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The Northeast, where the University of New Haven is located, boasts of one of the highest densities for biomedical engineering jobs in the nation. And, with the number of these jobs projected to grow by about 27% from 2012 and 2022 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics), it is highly likely that our biomedical engineers, as they interact with local hospitals and industry, will find themselves on the cutting edge of new technology, possibly developing:

  • Sensors that identify cancer biomarkers in blood
  • A device that mimics the blood-brain barrier for use in drug testing
  • Neural probes to treat Parkinson’s with deep-brain stimulation
  • Computer models that suggest how complex proteins are assembled
  • Waveforms to image the body with MRI
  • Ultrasound therapies to treat tumors non-invasively
  • Injectable stem-cell cultures to regenerate damaged tissue 

There are various biomedical engineering careers and professional opportunities available for a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering degree holder.  The graduates may find themselves in various specialties, which organize around various diseases, such as lung diseases, or organ systems such as the cardiovascular system, or technology such as biomaterials or imaging. Among the job opportunities are:

Industry based engineer: Biomedical engineers may work to develop and maintain medical equipment/devices for diagnosing and treating diseases.  Examples include pacemakers, prostheses, dialysis machines, and medical imaging equipment.  They may also apply their knowledge to bioinstrumentation (electronics and measurement techniques to create devices used in diagnosis and treatment of disease).  They may work with biomaterials, involving living tissue and artificial materials that are implanted in individuals. 

Hospital-based practice as clinical engineering: Biomedical engineers may work as clinical engineers to develop and maintain computer databases of medical instrumentation and equipment records.  Clinical engineers often work with physicians to develop instrumentation that applies the latest technology to a specific healthcare system.  They may also work on medical imaging to generate, for example, X-ray and PET images for physicians for disease diagnosis or patient treatment.  They may also work on rehabilitation engineering projects to enhance the capabilities and improve the quality of life for people with physical and cognitive impairments.  These projects may include prosthetics, the development of home, workplace and transportation modifications, and the design of technology to enhance communication.

Technical sales engineer: Technical sales biomedical engineers combine technical knowledge with sales skills to provide support on a range of medical instrumentations.  They assist end users from non-retail organizations, such as hospitals, national research laboratories, factories, institutions, and local authorities.  The emphasis of the work varies depending on the level of technical knowledge needed to sell a particular product or service.

Staff engineer (medical research laboratory): A biomedical engineering graduate may also work on a team of engineers at a medical research laboratory. He/She may work on cellular, tissue and genetic engineering projects, using the anatomy, biochemistry and mechanics of cellular and sub-cellular structures to attack biomedical problems at the microscopic level.  In this area choosing the appropriate material to place in the human body is one of the most difficult tasks faced by the biomedical engineer.  With a biomaterials background, one would gain a comprehensive understanding of the properties and behavior of living materials, which is vital in the design of artificial implant devices.  Graduates may find themselves working on orthopedic bioengineering, examining the friction, lubrication and wear characteristics of natural and artificial joints.  They may also perform stress analysis of the musculoskeletal system, and develop artificial biomaterials for replacement.  They may also engage in classical mechanics, such as statics, dynamics, fluids, solids, thermodynamics, and continuum mechanics to solve medical problems through biomechanics.  This area is largely responsible for the development of the artificial heart and valves, hip joint replacements, bone cartilage, and tendons of the musculoskeletal system. 

Consulting: This career choice is particularly inviting for someone who prefers variety in work assignments.  Besides solid credentials in the field, consulting also requires some business and entrepreneurial expertise and substantial communication skills.