When it comes to health science jobs, diversity is one area which separates it from other industries. The possibilities for career paths is seemingly limitless in health sciences, with a range of professions available from patient care, to manufacturing, to various health products and technologies. In the health science industry, you don’t have to be an MD to find meaningful work. Here are five professions in health science which typically require a bachelor’s degree or less.
- Registered Nurse – According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the nursing field is expected to grow 20-25% through the next decade, depending on location. In addition, registered nurses earned an average salary of $66,000 in 2014.
While earning an associate’s degree in nursing might be a faster track for nurses (generally 2-3 years of coursework), many healthcare employers now prefer nurses to have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). Professionals do not absolutely need a BSN to become a registered nurse, but it is typically recommended.
According to a 2012 national employer survey by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 43.7% of hospitals and healthcare providers require new nurses to hold a BSN, and 78.6% of employers express a strong preference for new nurses to hold a BSN.
- Cytogenetic Technologist – This position can also be identified as a Biochemistry Technologist or a Chief Medical Technologist. Professionals working as cytogenetic technologists analyze many different aspects of the human body, such as chromosomes, amniotic fluids, bone marrow and blood. Their findings help determine patient diagnosis and treatment of genetic disorders. Some of their daily activities can include transcribing and working with information in multiple forms (mainly written or electronic).
- Cardiovascular Perfusionist – These professionals are responsible for maintaining vital heart and lung operations during surgery procedures. Most professionals in this field work in operating rooms, but some can also work in the ICU with patients whose heart and lung functions might be in jeopardy. A bachelor’s degree is typically required for this position, but certification is also generally recommended. According to the American Society of Extracorporeal Technology, the Perfusion Basic Science Examination and the Perioperative Blood Management Technologist Examination are generally the most common certifications in the field.
- Biomedical Engineer – It’s not often to find an engineering role that doesn’t require an advanced degree. Biomedicine is a relatively new exception to the rule, blending research and development when it comes to improving medical devices like prostheses. Interested professionals typically need a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering, as well as hands-on job experience. Common work locations can include anywhere from hospitals to universities.
- Marketing Manager (Healthcare) – Healthcare venues generally have marketing and advertising needs just like every other operation. Healthcare marketing managers act as marketing ‘Swiss army knives’ as they can deal with issues ranging from promoting physician services to hospital specialties and focal points. Marketing managers also plan and oversee different marketing plans with print, video and Internet mediums.
Healthcare is a rapidly growing industry in the United States. According to the American Hospital Association, in the U.S. alone, there are currently more than 5,600 registered hospitals. In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that more than 18 million people currently work in healthcare.
Employers and employees alike can greatly benefit from job variety in the field. Supervisors are now delving into an ever-growing job pool, looking for a wider variety of skilled workers than ever before in an expanding health science industry.