Why Major In Biomedical Engineering?

"I have am a senior in high school, and my biology teacher has been telling me offhandedly that I should major in biomedical engineering when I enroll next year in college. I haven’t really had a chance to ask her to explain this, so I was hoping that you could shed some light on the suggestion. Why would I want to major in biomedical engineering? I don’t even have a clue what that is. It sounds complicated."

asked by Lois from Joliet, IL

Biomedical engineering is a career that brings together biology and engineering in the pursuit of healthcare solutions. There are actually numerous different occupations within this field. Some biomedical engineers develop new equipment for hospitals and clinics, while others may work to maintain equipment. Still others may evaluate it for safety in a government role. Some biomedical engineers even go into sales, because a sales agent with technical know-how is needed to market this kind of equipment to potential buyers and explain how it works.

Here are some reasons to strongly consider biomedical engineering:

Excellent pay

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), biomedical engineers in 2010 were making an average of $81,540 each year, or $39.20 per hour. That is excellent pay, and you can make even more at the higher end.

Startling rate of growth

In a world where a lot of career fields are shrinking, it isn’t too often you find a field with new openings appearing at a rate of 62%! The average for all occupations nationwide is 25%, so as you can see, there is a tremendous amount of opportunity here.

Steady work in the future

Biomedical engineering is a swiftly growing field because we have an increasingly large population of aged people in need of care. That trend is only going to continue, which means you should have plenty of work in the future.

A fascinating field

When you become a biomedical engineer, you are on the cutting edge of advanced medicine. That means you will be able to make discoveries of your own and innovate some of the most exciting technology on the planet.

A chance to use your creativity to help others

Biomedical engineers can help to improve quality of life for patients and treat and even cure diseases. You have a real chance to make a difference in the loves of patients around the globe.

If these incentives sound exciting to you and you can see yourself working in this role, I suggest you look into biomedical engineering programs offered in your area. You generally can get started in this field with nothing more than a bachelor’s degree, but you will need to make sure that you are getting an accredited degree in biomedical engineering. If you cannot find a program that offers that at the undergrad level, start out with a bachelor’s degree in engineering and then go on to get a master’s degree in biomedical engineering.

Career Spotlight: Biomedical Engineer

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