Students interested in the field of health and life sciences usually choose a specialization as they progress further into their degrees, which will then result in different career options. In order to understand what specializations they must make, students often explore possible career options beforehand and cater their degrees to them. Some popular examples of careers in the field of health and life sciences include pharmacist, nurse practitioner, audiologist, clinical biochemist, immunologist, and more. Careers in this field often entail working in laboratories, medical clinics, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, or research institutions, and students exploring these career options should be comfortable working in those environments.
There are some skills and levels of comfort which prove necessary to students exploring a career in the field of health and life sciences, and which skills a student has may help them to understand how they should specialize. For example, students who are more comfortable with the human body and its processes may be inclined to specialize in careers such as clinical biochemist, embryologist, or pathologist, which would not be suitable for students with an aversion to bodily fluids or certain topics, such as death. Those students who have a passion for working with patients and interacting with other people may enjoy more hands-on work, and could thrive in a career such as nurse practitioner or respiratory therapist. Some students also have a strong skill for analytical and lab related work, and often find success in career specializations which focus on study and theory, such as in laboratory and research positions.
Students are often concerned with salary when exploring career options, and this can become a significant factor in selecting their specialization. Some of the highest paying jobs in the field of health and life sciences include physician, surgeon, dentist, pharmacist, nurse practitioner, midwife, anesthesiologist, physical therapist, biotechnology, clinical research, and genomics, though there is an extensive variety of other high paying careers. Physicians and surgeons often have the highest salaries in the field, with salaries often reaching $200,000 per year or more. Nurse practitioners and midwives also earn a high paying salary, with the median salary reaching just over $100,000 per year. Those considering biotechnology or clinical research could expect to earn around $140, 000 per year of salary, as well.
Overall, the field of health and life sciences requires students to consider their career specializations ahead of time, and many students do this through self-reflection on their skills, comfort levels, and desired income.