Microbiologist

Microbiologist

Microbiologists study microorganisms that are found in various environments. They examine bacteria, fungi viruses and other parasites to see how they grow and interact with the environment in which they are located. Their duties require they isolate and make cultures of bacteria and other microorganisms in order to look at the growth of samples.
What Responsibilities Will I Have?: 
  • Isolate bacteria in order to look at growth of samples
  • Conduct tests on food and water samples to detect harmful microorganisms
  • Provide laboratory services to determine illness and treatment options
  • Research trends in disease outbreaks to find methods to control spread
  • Prepare reports and recommendations
  • Observe microorganisms’ reaction to chemicals and other stimuli
  • Monitor and identify microorganisms
  • Develop new technologies and processes
  • Assist in planning to prevent the spread of disease
  • Plan and implement new clinical trials
  • Oversee the work of laboratory staff
  • Provide scientific advice and consultation
  • Review product release data
Recommended High School Courses: 
The following high school courses are recommended: agricultural education, a focus on sciences such as animal science, chemistry and biology, physics, and mathematics. Writing classes would also be helpful as microbiologists often have to write reports based on their research findings.
Education/Training Required: 
Typically, a doctorate degree is required to become a microbiologist. Laboratory experience and field work is helpful. Some laboratory positions are obtainable with a bachelor’s degree in microbiology.
Future Job Market Outlook: 
Typical Employers: 
Microbiologists may work at a university, research firms, government agencies, or pharmaceutical or animal health companies. They may work independently or as part of a team.
Suggested Professional Organizations and Associations: 
  • American Society for Microbiology
  • US Animal Agriculture Alliance
  • American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science
  • Laboratory Safety Institute
Average Annual Full-Time Salary: 
$53,000
?
Salary data is provided by the AgCareers.com Compensation Benchmark Review™. These salaries should be considered as examples and are provided for educational and exploratory purposes. The salary information provided should not be used as a benchmark. Actual salaries are influenced by numerous variables including but not limited to demographics, size and scope of the role, level of experience, qualifications, and education of the worker.