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Dec 05th, 2023
Dec 05th, 2023
What is the process of embarking on a career in Bioprocessing and why should you even want to?
And we can confirm – to any young people interested in a life of science – the bioprocess sector is growing like mould in a petri dish!
Bioprocess businesses were at the forefront of developing the COVID19 vaccine – which is the most persuasive argument yet for the importance of the work done in this sector.
It’s a competitive field that demands excellence – but rewards it generously. So, you can have a career that challenges and rewards you professionally and personally – as well as financially. And, you will be helping to create products that make the world a healthier, safer and more sustainable place.
What’s not to love?
Back in 2011, the UK government launched ‘The STEM Strategy’ designed to help “empower future generations through science, technology, engineering and mathematics to grow a dynamic, innovative economy.”
This has led to a greater emphasis being placed in schools on producing people who are better at and more interested in the sciences.
It’s been a well-qualified success, especially in opening up the bioprocessing world to young people who maybe wouldn’t have traditionally found there way down this particular career path! As the Department of Education reported in 2021: Over the last decade, the uptick in young people from disadvantaged backgrounds being accepted into full time STEM degree courses has risen by almost 80% while, over the same period, the number of women being accepted onto full-time STEM undergraduate courses has increased by almost 50%.
This is the foundation of a great graduate programme which, in turn, leads to better, more skilled and more qualified people arriving in the labs of the Bioprocess industry.
Bioprocessing takes raw material (whole living cells or their components – such as bacteria and enzymes) and puts them through various biological processes to isolate, and then reproduce elements for biofuels and therapeutics.
As such, a career in bioprocessing is a synthesis of Mathematics, Biology and Chemistry with the cutting edge of IT. It ticks all the (bioprocess) boxes!
Just as the technology used is constantly improving and evolving, Bioprocessing is, itself, a field which is changing, to include disciplines like Biophysics, Biotechnology, and Biomaterials.
There are four main fields which rely on Bioprocessing:
In the future, Biotechnology will play an increasingly important role in the diagnosis and treatment of illness, as well as in the manufacture of ‘green’ energy.
All of which means there is a considerable area for growth within the sector. So, how do you get in?
Well, a glance at any employment website offering BioScience opportunities will show that a BCs or BEng degree in a Scientific, Engineering or Biotech subject is pretty much the bare minimum. If you can spend the extra time getting yourself an MSc, that’ll open a lot more doors. Inevitably, a PhD in a relevant subject is the gold standard.
Of course, a PhD can take a long time to achieve and, often, can’t be completed unless you can tie it into your lab work. So, being on a PhD programme which an employer can help you with, is a good position to be in, if you aren’t already a Doctor! Responsible employers do love to help uplift their staff!
It’s a fascinating and ever-changing world in Bioprocessing, we wish you luck if, this autumn, you’ll be arriving at university, to embark on this journey.
And, when you arrive in your first cleanroom – don’t forget to check to make sure they’re using our all-plastic Cleanroom Totes!