Paths & Careers
Our majors often desire additional experiences and training to meet their personal educational goals. These include preparation for medical school and studying abroad. Some students choose a minor or collection of liberal studies courses that strategically complement their engineering training to broaden their post-graduate career choices. Our major has built-in flexibility to accommodate these paths as described below.
B.S. Major Course Schedule Sample: This schedule provides a straightforward eight-semester progression that requires no prior college/AP credit or summer courses, and balances engineering and humanities courses throughout. It is recommended that most BME students use this schedule as a starting point for planning their courses.
Pre-Med Path: Students interested in matriculating to medical school need to take additional chemistry courses. This schedule sample minimizes the number of additional credits that the students accrue while also satisfying the pre-medicine course requirements. This path sample also does not require prior college/AP credit, summer courses, or additional semesters to complete. It is recommended that pre-med students use this schedule as a starting point for planning their courses.
Study Abroad: The undergraduate Biomedical Engineering program was approved by New York State during the summer of 2015. Due to the ongoing development of the new curriculum, students planning to study Biomedical Engineering should not plan to study abroad during a fall/spring term. Summer study abroad opportunities may be considered with the assistance of Cornell's Office of Global Learning, or students may want to explore summer research opportunities abroad.
Liberal Studies Paths: Cornell places a high value on a well-rounded education, and the B.S in BME is no exception. While many students pursue varied intellectual interests with their liberal arts electives, some students wish to complement their engineering and life science curriculum with a strategic set of additional courses to prepare them for specific career options. Several examples of these are given below with links to the appropriate courses.
Career prospects for our graduates are plentiful and robust. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of biomedical engineers will grow much faster than the average (23%) for all occupations. Demand will continue to be strong because an aging population is likely to need more medical care and because of increased public awareness of biomedical engineering advances and their benefits. A BME major will prepare students for careers in industry and business and for graduate education in engineering, medicine, and science.
Our core discipline skill set empowers undergraduates for both further education and careers in the engineering and life science industries, providing students with a sound platform for employment in the medical devices and instrumentation industry as well as development and application of biologics, biomaterials, implants and processes. Graduate school in a specific biomedical engineering concentration is another option for students wishing to continue their research. The major is also excellent preparation for entry into graduate study in medicine. Graduates may continue their studies in Masters of Engineering (M.Eng.) programs or Doctoral (Ph.D) programs.
The following lists the kinds of positions secured by our graduates in recent years. You may also read our alumni profiles to see what some of our graduates have accomplished
General (any concentration):
- Consulting (Slalom Consulting, Accenture, IMS Health, Epic Software, Michael Allen
- Patent Law (Riverside Law LLC, Merlo Kanofsky Ltd)
- Medical/Research Technician (UCSF Med Center, Mt. Sinai, Boston Children's, Mass General, Broad Institute, Rockefeller)
- Military/Defense (Army Soldier, Systems Center)
- Bio-pharmaceutical Firms (Bristol-Myers Squibb, Talecris Biother., Genencor Int, Regeneron, Genentech, Merrimack)
- Medical School/Graduate School Paths
- BME Companies (Regeneron, Spectropath)
- Drug delivery companies (product development track) - Merck, Pfizer, Amgen, Genentech, Regeneron, J&J, Genzyme, Biogen, Idec, BMS, Novartis, "start-ups"
- Medical Device Firms: Biomaterial Design (Medtronic, Edwards)
- Optical microscopy firms (Leica, Zeiss, Spectra Services, Technicians, Sales)
- Imaging Technology Engineer (GE Healthcare, Phillips, Siemens)
- Imaging Specialists at other firms (Perkin-Elmer)
- Instrumentation software design (Epic)
- Sequencing technology firms (Agilent, BD, Illumina)
- Spectroscopy Firms, Technical/Sales
- Cardiovascular Medical Device Design Engineer (Medtronic, Atrium Medical, J&J, Boston Scientific)
- Computational Analyst/Modeling Engineer (Heart Flow, Agilent)
- Medical Device Quality Control (GE Healthcare, Phillips, Mettler-Toledo)
- Research Engineer (Hospital for Special Surgery)
For more information on careers in biomedical engineering, visit the sites below:
- U.S. Department of Labor: Bureau of Labor Statistics
- MyMajors.com: A comprehensive list of necessary skills and abilities for bioengineers
- Salary.com (for salary ranges for newly graduated biomedical engineers)
- USNews & Word Reports: Explore Biomedical Engineering, Other Hot Jobs for Future Engineers