Dismiss Notice

Interview Feedback: Visit Interview Feedback to view and submit interview information.

Interviewing Masterclass: Free masterclass on interviewing from SDN and Medical College of Georgia

Biomedical engineering masters instead of med school

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by JPSmyth, Aug 16, 2015.

  1. JPSmyth

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Messages:
    758
    Likes Received:
    382
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I have been doing a lot of thinking, and I'm contemplating going into a different field after my senior year of college. I'm looking into biomedical engineering or something along those lines. I am a biology major with a 3.9+ GPA, and I've taken all of the med school pre-reqs but only calc 1 and stats, and no engineering classes whatsoever. I am looking into masters programs in biomedical / bioengineering.

    What I really want is to go into a field that has a decent starting salary, ~40hr weeks, is science related, lots of job opportunities in cities, and things of that nature. Does anybody have any insight into the field of biomedical engineering?

    Med school is definitely still on the table for me. I've completed the prereqs, shadowed, researched, volunteered, and pretty much dedicated my whole undergrad experience to medical school, and I haven't completely changed my mind but I just wanted to ask for some opinions from you guys.

    Thank you very much!
     
  2. Doudline

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Messages:
    2,248
    Likes Received:
    1,751
    You would be better served by thegradcafe.com

    It's the graduate school version of SDN. ;)
     
  3. Dro133

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    214
    Likes Received:
    194
    Status:
    Medical Student
    https://www.reddit.com/r/bioengineering/ is a good place to get an idea of what the job market in the field is like. You can also read stories of people like you who went into biomedical engineering from a strictly bio background.

    Also, have you looked into bioinformatics at all? It'll satisfy what you're looking for, and a lot of people with a strictly bio background enter bioinformatics masters programs. Future job prospects may be better than BME, too. https://www.reddit.com/r/bioinformatics/ is a good place to start.
     
  4. JPSmyth

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Messages:
    758
    Likes Received:
    382
    Status:
    Medical Student
    Thank you both!
     
  5. Strudel19

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2011
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    189
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    My basic science research at school is in bioinformatics. It's a relatively new field. I think the job prospects are there (65, 75, 85K salaries in industry) but with a masters you'll be a mid-level in industry without a lot of room for advancement. Because of that pretty good salary there's a higher opportunity cost as you get the PhD and maybe post-doc and you're not going to see much of a salary bump.
     
  6. JPSmyth

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Messages:
    758
    Likes Received:
    382
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I feel like now I shot myself in the foot as a biology major, because I don't really want to extend my undergraduate career any longer by taking a bunch of math and engineering courses so I can be admitted to a biomedical engineering grad program.

    Are there any masters programs that you guys know of for biology undergrads that are in the science field and can lead to a six figure salary after a few years in the field? Thanks again
     
    #6 JPSmyth, Aug 16, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2015
  7. teeayejay

    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    Messages:
    1,387
    Likes Received:
    1,914
    Status:
    Medical Student
    might as well...more spots for the rest of us...lol jk. go with your passion man
     
  8. cantankerous

    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2015
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    303
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    I hope you went to a school well known for engineering. Unlike medicine, where you go can affect whether or not you'll get a job (even with a Masters, Ph.D, Post Doc, etc.) in engineering fields.

    And how did you take physics without doing calc I?
     
  9. JustintheDoctor

    JustintheDoctor High functioning FeelsOpath
    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2013
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    133
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    There's algebra based physics too i think or he could have taken Calc in HS?
     
  10. cantankerous

    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2015
    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    303
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    AKA fake physics for people who need to fill a gen-ed requirement
     
  11. Faii

    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2014
    Messages:
    142
    Likes Received:
    187
    Status:
    Medical Student (Accepted)
    Hey there, I did BME undergrad as well as a BME masters. BME is a very very exciting field and there are a lot of good things about it. One thing is that it's incredibly diverse: you can be studying implantable electronics or tissue engineering and everything in between. The downside of BME a is this though: we are the jack of all trades and master of none.
    What I mean by this is that companies who want to hire someone to do electronics for a medical device have two options: an electrical engineer who's spent 4-5 years on JUST electronics or a BME who's spent less time on electronics but more on the bio-side, but that's not in the job description.
    There are a LOT of opportunities in BME, I only mean to point out that there are many ways to be a BME besides having a BME degree, and you'll be competing with people with more specialized knowledge than you. Think about what you'd like to do in the field, and look up your ideal jobs: who are they hiring? what experiences/skills do they want you to have?

    Easy answer: Petroleum Engineering or anything Gas/Oil related
    Hard answer: You'll need not only a masters but also relevant internships or a co-op to get your foot in the door. You'll likely start as a junior engineer i.e. not paid well, because your job is paying you in "experience".
    After a couple of years you can probably score a new job at another company willing to pay you, but it may take years to work up to that 6 figure salary depending on what you're doing. If you're working for a start-up or if your pay is funded by grants, you'll have a hard time getting the salary you want with just a master's. In my experience, the bio-side of BME relies a lot on grants because it's more university based or start-ups. Keep in mind that unless you become "The Guy/Gal" in your company who's irreplaceable (or go into Pet. Engineering), *most* engineering jobs have a pay cap of around 150k.
     
  12. JPSmyth

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Messages:
    758
    Likes Received:
    382
    Status:
    Medical Student
    Screw this I'm going to medical school. Too much trouble, by the time I get through the necessary courses and everything, with internships and all, I could have completed 4 years of med school and be starting a residency. I've come too far there is no turning back now.
     
    amatar92 and JustintheDoctor like this.
  13. MyNameWasUsed

    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2014
    Messages:
    198
    Likes Received:
    127
    Status:
    Other Health Professions Student
    OP have you considered a career in allied health professions? PT or PA? If you are considering a MS in BME then you might want to look into a MS in PA. It's 2 more years and make pretty decent money.
     
  14. JPSmyth

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Messages:
    758
    Likes Received:
    382
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I spoke with a doctor about this that I shadowed. He said that PA is a good gig, and you can switch specialties and make good money etc... However, the sign outside your door is going to say "assistant" for the rest of your career. He said that if you don't mind that then go for it, but he wouldn't want that. And I completely agreed with him. I was just curious to look into other fields, but now I know there are no readily available options for me so I will continue on my original path
     
  15. Lawper

    Lawper not actually a cube
    Rocket Scientist Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2014
    Messages:
    17,630
    Likes Received:
    49,622
    ;)

    I'm surprised people are recommending the MS in BME/bioinformatics route for a strictly biology major. I would figure such a route would require a strong math foundation (up to and including linear algebra and differential equations), as well as some courses on mechanics and physical chemistry/thermodynamics. For someone with a limited background in math, i wouldn't recommend going for that route.

    Unfortunately, a master's in a biology field is worthless in itself unless you're pursuing graduate school or for biology education opportunities. To understand and devise an effective alternative plan, you need to find out what subjects you like outside of biology and go from there.
     

Share This Page