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I am confused. Please help

I am planning to work in a company like Illumina, Moderna, Genentech, or something similar. My question is what should I major in. Also how long do I need to study? Do I need to have a Ph.D.? What is the entry-level salary?

Major in Bioinformatics

Major In computer science and minor in Biology.

#biology #bioinformatics #phd #in


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Nick’s Answer

It's important to be picturing yourself working in a field of your choice but sometimes it's hard to plan a detailed path. Fortunately, it's not necessary to predict your final outcome so early. The early years of college are typically general learning in a field and narrowing down to majors in the later years. You will naturally find your strengths a preferences during this process. Take every opportunity for high quality interning in the fields you are interested in. You will find out how much education you need to achieve your goals. It's important that you keep an open mind about your career because its better that you learn how to recognize the best opportunity when it emerges. That's not to say one should ease up on specific goals but expect a shift and refinement as you mature.

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Lyndsay’s Answer

The major and minor you mentioned would open up your job opportunities because you could work in both fields doing a wide variety of things. Bioinformatics degrees do offer numerous different specialties BUT jobs are pretty few and far between and most do require a phd, from what I'm seeing.

As far as pay, entry level pay in bioinformatics is about 60k....according to averages and including things like stock shares.
https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Bioinformatics_Scientist/Salary/27befd51/Bioinformatics

Looking at actual job listings it looks like it's more like $45,000 with a 2 or 4 year degree. To put it in perspective, that's similar to what a teacher makes...
https://www.simplyhired.com/search?q=entry+level+bioinformatics&job=iVWQySSVDqpj1wpouJlrQsBy8_pZJ9eszw7LSu--Ini1PkB6fTHKkg

Lyndsay recommends the following next steps:

https://www.datascienceblog.net/post/commentary/studying-bioinformatics-is-it-worth-it/
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Maxwell’s Answer

Hi Vidhi! First off, can you explain why you want to work for these companies? What satisfaction do you get from wanting to work at these companies. I would advise you to explore the companies you are interested in working at, and see what they have to offer in terms of careers. After looking and spying those careers, I would do informational interviews with these folks, who work in these departments, and ask what the requirements are. This will give you a better idea of what you want to do. I would do this first, before deciding to get a Ph.D., because these companies may not necessarily require to get an advanced degree. As always, utilize the career center at your university for extra support.

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Tiffany’s Answer

research salary for any job/company at glassdoor ect. You can get an idea of salary. Or go on linkedin and just start asking people who work at the specific company you are interested in. This is a good way to find mentors as well.

It depends on what you want to do at these types of companies. Every company needs admin roles and science roles. Once you know what you want to do as a career path, then you can decide what major to do.

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Gloria’s Answer

Hi Vidhi,

I think that you should begin with what you want to do for these companies that you have chosen. I once worked for a pharmaceutical company as a trainer of call center agents who answer phone calls from customers working through their prescription plans. Some of those companies are so large that there are a wide variety of roles that do not require medical degrees at all. The role that I really admired were the call center pharmacists. So they usually have a degree in Doctor of Pharmacy. I admired them because they know more about medicine and interactions than any doctor could. Ever since, I make sure to ask the advice of a pharmacist whenver I get a prescription from a doctor. I have had a pharmacist change my prescription by reaching out to the doctor, because of some conflict.

Gloria

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