Geneticists can work in research and patient facing roles in areas such as bioinformatics,’ nursing, genomic counselling, genetic medicine, cancer genetics amongst others.
While a good number of students commit to scientific careers, some inevitably choose to work in sectors and professions unrelated to genetics such as marketing, public relations, finance, law and so on. In order to pursue some careers you may have to undertake further study and develop specialist skills and knowledge.
What skills will I gain during my degree?
As well as the skills developed on your course, participation in extracurricular and work experience, organisations large and small are also looking for students to have developed a range of attributes such as the following while at university. What employers seek from candidates is evolving all the time and it is important that you keep up to date with recruitment trends in the career areas that interest you.
- Relationship building
- Influencing online and in person
- Business appropriate communication
- Career management
What are my career options?
Scientists and other professionals are using discoveries in genetics to revolutionise the world. This means careers in genetics and genomics are booming.
According to the Genetics Society, demand for graduates in genetics and related fields is strong. A good qualification is much sought after by many employers. Universities require researchers and technicians and lecturers in a wide range of genetic-related fields.
Hospitals require genetics clinicians, researchers, technicians, counsellors, and nurses.
Agricultural, pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries require researchers and technicians in addition to people with knowledge of genetics to work in management, writing and reporting, marketing, sales and public relations.
Government bodies and agencies require administrators, managers, and officers with knowledge of genetics for decisions in science policy, regulation, advice, legislation and awarding research grants.
In addition, genetic training in combination with another field such as law, computing, engineering can open up further avenues. Finally, a genetics degree, can be beneficial to careers not directly linked to genetics or even non-science related careers.
Public health is closely related to your course of study and if this area interests you then do look at the areas of health protection, and health improvement and you could find yourself working for the NHS, the Government, local government, the Armed Forces or the charity sector.
NHS Public Health Careers
Do you like communicating? Enjoy writing?
Then have you thought of science communication and science writing?
Science writers research, write and edit scientific news, articles and features in a range of different formats, including:
- business, trade and professional publications
- specialist scientific and technical journals
- general media
- promotional brochures, press releases, websites, podcasts and blogs
More about science communication - including advice from a communications professional
Association of British Science Writers
Science communicators do much of the above but they may also organise exhibitions, produce film and digital content and present science education to the public.
You may want to consider a specialist masters course in science communication such as those offered at the following universities Imperial College, Sheffield, West of England, Manchester Metropolitan, and Edinburgh.
Medical sales representatives or ‘reps’ are a key link between medical and pharmaceutical companies and healthcare professionals. They typically sell medicines, prescription drugs and medical equipment to GPs, hospital doctors, pharmacists and nurses, working to raise awareness and use of their company’s products.
Prospects - medical sales rep
The European Medical Writers Association (EMWA) describes medical writing as ‘communicating clinical and scientific data and information to a range of audiences in a wide variety of different formats.
Medical writers combine their knowledge of science and their research skills with an understanding of how to present information and pitch it at the right level for the intended audience.
European Medical Writers Association
The pharmaceutical sector
We tend to think of pharmaceutical companies as huge global corporate, and they do account for the majority of UK Pharma employment.
But a growing number of small to medium sized enterprises are becoming involved in drug development too.
The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has developed a comprehensive list of pharmaceutical companies, their contact details and some of the areas they regularly recruit into. It is searchable by location, category, employment area and type of role, for example internship, graduate training programme.
Find out about the jobs in the sector
The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry
What are my further study options?
From the destination returns of our students we find that most undergraduates progress onto specialised masters’ degrees and secure employment in a health or research related roles in organisations such as the NHS, companies such as Fusion Antibodies, 2 Sisters Food Group, The Royal Navy, GovNet Communications, PRA Health Sciences or progress onto a PhD.
Find out more on out Further study page