Careers in Biotechnology

Adapted from 

Biotechnology is an interdisciplinary field with applications in many industries. Professionals work for a variety of organizations like government agencies, private companies, regulatory bodies, or clinical laboratories. Employers in the field range in size and type from small start-ups to global pharmaceutical leaders to federal organizations such as the Department of Agriculture and National Institutes of Health. Check out some of the most in-demand biotechnology careers that are shaping our future in the list below. 

Biomedical Engineer 

2021 Median Pay: $97,410 

Projected Growth by 2030: 6% 

Biomedical engineers combine engineering and biological expertise to solve problems in biology and medicine. They design biomedical equipment, devices, and medical software, such as artificial organs, prostheses, and diagnostic machines to improve the quality of patient healthcare. Students with a undergraduate degree in the physical or biological sciences often meet the admissions criteria for a master’s degree in biomedical engineering (for example, check out the University of Minnesota Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program prerequisites here). 


2021 Median Pay: $102,270 

Projected Growth by 2030: 5% 

Biochemists study chemical properties of living things and biological processes, like cell development, cell growth, heredity, and disease. They conduct research projects and often isolate, analyze, and synthesize proteins, lipids (fats), DNA and other molecules. They also research the effects of drugs, hormones, and nutrients on tissues and biological processes to develop products and processes that may improve human health. 

Medical Scientist 

2021 Median Pay: $95,310 

Projected Growth by 2030: 17% 

Medical scientists conduct clinical research to improve patient health by investigating diseases and prevention methods. They develop and test medical devices. They prepare and analyze medical samples to investigate the causes and treatments of toxicity, pathogens, and chronic diseases. They may also help standardize drug potency, doses, and methods for the mass manufacturing and distribution of drugs and medicinal compounds. 

Biological/Clinical Technician or Medical Laboratory Scientists 

2021 Median Pay: $48,140 

Projected Growth by 2030: 7% 

Biological technicians collect samples, perform tests, and analyze results of body fluids, tissue, bacteria cultures, and other substances. These technicians use lab instruments, advanced robotics, specialized computer software, and automated equipment to collect, analyze, and model experimental data. 


2021 Median Pay: $79,260 

Projected Growth by 2030: 5% 

Microbiologists study viruses, bacteria and the immune system to produce biomedical and industrial products. These professionals conduct complex research projects and lab experiments to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of infectious illnesses. 

Process Development Scientist 

2021 Median Pay: $94,739 

Process development scientists oversee the manufacturing process in an organization’s lab, looking for ways to increase quality and efficiency. Once a new product has been developed and approved for manufacturing, these scientists develop methods to scale production while adhering to standardized protocols. 

Biomanufacturing Specialists 

Median Pay: $80,629 

Biomanufacturing specialists use tools and methods to guarantee products meet requirements of purity, safety, potency and quality throughout the manufacturing process. It often involves the large-scale production of proteins used to treat or cure human diseases, which requires that these specialists possess a thorough knowledge of federal, state, and industry regulatory standards. 

Business Development Manager 

Median Pay: $123,065 

Business development managers give detailed market analysis to help companies formulate and execute growth and investment strategies. They help with assessing and pursuing expansion, acquisition, and collaborative research and partnering opportunities with other biotechnology institutions to achieve business growth in line with corporate goals. 

Director of Product Strategy/Commercialization 

Median Pay: $129,939 

Biotechnology professionals in these business roles handle the development and execution of the commercialization strategy for new products including launch, market development, marketing and sales, driving growth and profitability while ensuring compliance with regulatory and quality requirements.