Rochester Institute of Technology

Academic Program Overviews

Student Skills & Capabilities, Salary Data, Career Information 

Biotechnology and Molecular Bioscience BS

Program Overview

The BS degree in biotechnology and molecular bioscience prepares students to immediately assume challenging positions in research, development, and management in biotechnology. Students are also well-prepared for positions in the fields of industrial biotechnology, cancer research, human genetics, gene therapy, food science, agriculture, plant biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and vaccine development, and environment and energy. The advanced nature of the third-and fourth-year courses that have a laboratory component , as well as the opportunity to participate in faculty-sponsored undergraduate research, provides a sound foundation to those students wishing to pursue a master’s or doctoral degree. It should be noted that the biotechnology and molecular bioscience program is rigorous and includes the education necessary for students interested in professional schools such as medicine and dentistry.

Degrees Awarded

  • Bachelor of Science

Enrollment

  • Approximately 150 students

Cooperative Education & Experiential Education Component

  • All students in the College of Science and the Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences are required to complete Experiential Learning (EL) that is minimally equivalent to one academic year, exclusive of first-year biology, before they graduate.
  • The experiential learning requirement can be fulfilled through a variety of methods including co-op, undergraduate research, summer research experiences, designated EL courses, etc.

Salary Information

                   Avg.                      Range
Co-op:        $17.20                                  $11.00 - $22.50 (2014 – 2016)
BS:              $44,670*                              $32,000 - $65,000*

*From self-reported salaries on Glassdoor.com using 8 different relevant job titles

Student Skills & Capabilities

Students’ skillsets will vary depending on the upper division elective courses each student takes. The following is a comprehensive list of skills and techniques currently learned by students in this program: Preparation of media, reagents, buffers; keeping a laboratory notebook and preparing research reports; establishing and maintaining primary tissue/organ cultures and cell lines; isolation and characterization of microorganisms; viral plaque assays; cloning in soft agar and by limiting dilution; mycoplasma assays; cryopreservation; plasmid isolation; DNA restriction digests and ligation; PAGE and agarose gel electrophoresis; thin-layer chromatography; HPLC; western and southern blots; Next-Generation Sequencing platform for whole genome sequencing; RT-PCR; cDNA synthesis; microsatellite analysis; electroporation and pulse-field electrophoresis; plant cell transformation; plant gene cloning; gene mapping; monoclonal antibody production; spectrophotometry; recombinant protein production and purification using a variety of methods; enzymatic characterization; genomics using current nucleotide and protein databases to facilitate bioinformatics analyses of databases; and computer-controlled fermentations.

Equipment & Facilities

·          9 teaching laboratories
·          13 student/faculty research laboratories
·          NYS-DOH certified animal facility
·          Greenhouse and plant tissue culture facility
·          Confocal Microscopy Laboratory (https://www.rit.edu/science/confocal)
·          Next Generation Sequencing platform

Training / Qualifications

A bachelor’s degree is adequate for many entry-level technical research positions in academic and industry settings. For example, some graduates with a bachelor’s degree start as laboratory technicians in wet labs working on a particular project under the supervision of a lead scientist, or obtain positions related to biological science such as technical sales or service representatives. In some cases, graduates with a bachelor’s degree are able to work on their own projects in a laboratory environment, but this is unusual. Many with a bachelor’s degree in biotechnology also choose to enter medical, dental, veterinary, or other health profession schools in addition to a wide range of graduate programs (PhD or MS) at a multitude of prestigious research universities. A Ph.D. degree usually is necessary for teaching or independent research in academic and industrial research, and college teaching, and for advancement to administrative positions. A master’s degree is sufficient for some jobs in basic research, applied research or product development, management, or inspection; it may also qualify one to work as a research technician.

Job Outlook

Employment of biological technicians is projected to grow 5 percent from thru 2024, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Continued growth in biotechnology, molecular therapeutics, and pharmaceutical research is expected to increase demand for these workers. (Source:  O.O.H.)

Job Titles

Research assistant, laboratory technician, clinical lab technologist, research associate, biologist, sales representative, technical writer, process developer, genetic counselor, forensic analyst, molecular biologist, medical and clinical laboratory technicians, microbiologists, agricultural and food science technicians, among others.

Employment

Biological technicians held about 79,300 in 2014. Federal biological technicians worked mainly for the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Interior, and Defense, and for the National Institutes of Health. Most of the rest worked in scientific research and testing laboratories, the pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing industry, or hospitals. (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics O.O.H.)

Selected Employer Hiring Partners

Sanofi Pasteur, Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics, Glaxo Smithkline, University of Rochester, iCardiac Technologies, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, VWR International, Life Science Inc, Bristol-Meyers Squibb, The Jackson Lab, Vaccinex, Johns Hopkins University, Yale University, Sigma Aldrich, Life Technologies, Merck; National Institutes of Health (NIH), US Environmental Protection Agency, MIT, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Seattle Genetics, Denali Therapeutics, Biocogent, Novozymes, Vaccinex, Sweetwater Energy, BioWorks, Bausch & Lomb

Contact Us

We appreciate your interest in your career. We will make every effort to help you succeed. Call our office and ask to speak with Mindy Blake, the career services coordinator who works with the Biotechnology and Molecular Bioscience program. For your convenience, you can access information and services through our web site at https://www.rit.edu/careerservices.

Mindy Blake, Career Services Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 585.475.5467
Rochester Institute of Technology . Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education
Bausch & Lomb Center
57 Lomb Memorial Drive . Rochester NY  14623-5603
585.475.2301

Unless otherwise noted, information is based upon data collected by RIT Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education.