How To Start a Medical Engineering Career

Medical engineering, also known as bioengineering or biomedical engineering, combines engineering and mathematical principles with medical knowledge. Medical engineers apply their engineering expertise to advance the well being of individuals. Examples of medical devices resulting from the research and development of medical engineers include life support systems, MRIs, pacemakers and artificial hips.

As people live longer and seek to have increasingly more productive lives, and with an ever-increasing emphasis in the world on health and well being, medical engineering careers enjoy strong popularity.

If you are interested in pursuing a medical engineering career, your first step should be to visit the websites of colleges and universities to see if they offer degrees in medical engineering. Secondly, understand the educational requirements necessary to pursue a medical engineering career. Physical science, clinical applications, biomedicine and various engineering principles are necessary course requirements for anyone wanting to begin a career in this field.

A Bachelor of Science is the minimum degree level required for entering the field of medical engineering. In addition to introductory-level courses in math, science and engineering, candidates for a BS study bioengineering principles such as medical imaging, systems analysis and nanotechnology. With a BS in medical engineering, you may be qualified to pursue a career as a quality assurance professional or a development engineer with a medical device or pharmaceutical company.

If you are serious about making the most of a career in this field, you may want to consider an advanced degree. A Master's or PhD in medical or biomedical engineering prepares students for a hands-on career in conducting research and/or developing new, life-enhancing or life-saving devices. Your advanced understanding of how engineering and medicine can effectively work together can also be used in the advancement of health management and medical information systems, as well as  the delivery of healthcare in general.

Many colleges and universities that offer degrees in medical or biomedical engineering provide internships with research facilities, medical device companies or pharmaceutical companies. An internship offers the hands-on experience necessary to apply studies to real-life situations. Also, a successful internship with a company could lead to a permanent position upon graduation.

In addition to help from colleges and universities that offer biomedical engineering degrees, there are several organizations that provide career information for those interested in working as a biomedical engineer. Many of these give advice on the level of education necessary for various types of jobs, along with the estimated salary range.


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