Science Jobs Away From Research

McGill is a research-intensive university. To be able to attend a school that places importance on research and study in the field, is a privilege. It offers countless opportunities to students and can be a rewarding and career-changing experience. It’s a pivotal part of your education, especially if you plan on going into academia. But… what if that’s not something you’re interested in? If after your studies, the lab bench or research team is not for you, or maybe you just want a break, here are other job paths in science that you may want to take. Note that some require additional education.

Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology Sales & Marketing
Good if you have both a degree in science and an interest in marketing, and more for those who enjoy engaging and interacting with others. The main component here is being able to sell products efficiently and constantly stay on top of what is new in terms of medicine, technology, treatment, and scientific discoveries.

Pharmaceutical Quality Control
Important for ensuring the quality of drugs, especially when produced in large quantities. Knowledge on techniques and procedures in the respective field you’re interested in, as well as good problem-solving skills and focus on detail are important to have.

Medical Technology
Production and troubleshooting for technology used in medical practice and labs. This does require engineering experience due to the nature of the domain.

Medical and Technical Writing & Illustration
If you’ve always had an interest in either writing or the arts and science, this could be a good alternative for you. It would involve being able to very clearly communicate often complicated scientific concepts through writing or illustration in textbooks, manuals, and scientific journals, among others.

Scientific Journalism & Editing
If you enjoy writing, but with less technicality and precision, scientific journalism is another option. Competence in writing and being comfortable with scientific language is important, but knowing how to convey difficult scientific theories and discoveries in a way that is accessible to the general public is also essential.

Patent Law
This specific branch of law requires schooling in law, but having a degree in a science field is an advantage as well. Patent lawyers play significant roles in the filing of patents, but the job is also demanding and requires you to do well under pressure.

Education & Teaching
Includes science teachers, but also educating the public in other settings outside of schools through talks, presentations, and demonstrations. While becoming a teacher will likely require training in education, a bachelor will probably suffice in other roles. A “people person” will enjoy this domain the most.

Policy Making
Applying scientific knowledge to public policy making in areas such as: public health, drug regulation, environmental protection, technological development, etc. Positions are in available government branches and NGOs.

Information Analysis
Good if you like handling, manipulating, and analyzing data and if you have a strong background in statistics. A good choice if you enjoy computer science and informatics. Information analysts often provide support to policy makers.

Software Developing
This is another path that will require additional training, but could be interesting if you enjoy computer science, engineering, and math. Software developers design software and programs for lab, bioinformatics, and educational purposes.

If you’ve found your place in a scientific field, but still aren’t sure where you want to go next with your degree, make sure to take advantage of all the career resources online and on campus and remember that many doors are open to you if you look in the right places!

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