The country – India – is among the fastest-growing genetic engineering centres in the world, with an estimated 15,000 graduates annually, according to government statistics. The majority are employed by leading pharmaceutical companies and research institutions.
The desire to understand our health and build better treatments for diseases are undoubtedly driving both the rapidly growing field of genetic engineering and the rapidly changing job market for it. However, being a genetic engineer will not be easy, and you will need to prepare yourself for a long learning curve.
In this article, I will provide a list of 12 steps that I have followed, which helped me to become a genetic engineer in India. A genetic engineer is an individual who works with biology and genetics in a specialized field. To become a genetic engineer, you must have a decent engineering background and at least some knowledge of biology. The first step is to choose a career that you can pursue with some intensity. It would be useful to have a degree in some scientific discipline, and to have some exposure to computers, because it will help you to get an idea of what is needed to pursue a career in genetics. Next, you would need to get a job. In India, many people with a decent engineering background are struggling to find a job,
What does a genetic engineer do?
As the name suggests, a genetic engineer is the person responsible for modifying the DNA of an organism. The technique of changing DNA is called genetic engineering. You’ve probably heard of terms like biotechnology or biomedicine. These terms are related, and the family of professions deals with the modification of DNA to design a living organism to meet specific human needs. A common example is genetically modified wheat, which can grow in low-water conditions and has greater resistance to disease. This field has become very popular in India and some researchers are hired by India-based multinationals. They are looking for new variants that can become a marketable product. Genetic engineers often work in a controlled environment, in laboratories equipped with modern technology. They have the means to analyze and alter DNA. The application of genetic engineering is not limited to agriculture, but is also widely used in the treatment of diseases.
Criteria for becoming a genetic engineer
If you are considering selecting a field, it is best to check the selection criteria first. This will prevent you from being disappointed later. The following are qualifications for the profession of genetic engineer.
- The preparation starts with 10+2, because you have to study medicine for two years during this period. Mathematics, chemistry, physics and biology are compulsory subjects.
- To be admitted to the entrance examination, candidates must have completed grades 10 and 12. The class achieves at least 60%. You can’t do anything without them.
- Minimum undergraduate grades are required for admission to doctoral and graduate programs.
- There are some necessary skills that can help you in your career. We have listed some of them below.
- They must have a scientific approach.
- You must have good problem-solving and logical reasoning skills.
- Knowledge of graphical tools such as CAD and the ability to work with photographic images will help you understand the structure of DNA.
- Knowledge of Python is optional and can also be acquired during the study.
- You must have excellent communication skills.
- It is also important to be numerically literate and to be able to use all scientific tools easily.
Training for the profession of genetic engineering
In this section, we have listed the different courses you can take to become a genetic engineer. We have these courses at different levels, check them out now.
- Undergraduate level – At the undergraduate level, you have the opportunity to enroll in an undergraduate degree in genetic engineering or biotechnology engineering. The two courses are very similar and you will learn almost the same topics. It is a 4-year course and many universities in India offer it. The study programme consists of 8 semesters. To become a genetic engineer, you must choose one of the following two paths.
- Master’s degree – After completing a bachelor’s degree, you have the opportunity to work in industry for a period of time before moving on to a master’s degree. You have to opt for a master’s degree in the same field and the IITs are among the best institutes for this. The programme at Master’s level takes 2 years and consists of 4 semesters. You can also get a scholarship during your final year of study.
- PhD level – If you want to become a genetic researcher, a master’s degree may not be enough. Many organizations require graduate level courses, in which case you should opt for a doctorate. You can choose a research topic and write a summary about it.
Admission to the course in genetic engineering
You have studied the courses you need to take to become a genetic engineer. In this section, we discuss the application process for admission to colleges and universities in the country.
- Bachelor’s Level – Entry to this level is only possible through competitive examinations. To get admitted to a university, you need to pass exams like JEE or university specific entrance exams. This is usually followed by a personal interview, and you will be admitted once all these formalities are completed.
- Graduate level – If you want to apply for a master’s degree in genetic engineering, you will need to take GATE exams. Admission to this PG course is possible only after a qualifying examination. The procedure is similar to that for admission to an academic programme.
- Doctoral level – Things are a little different at this level. To get a PhD, you have to apply to several universities and have personal interviews. Admission is based on research topics and your knowledge of the subject. You will also receive a good salary during your PhD.
- Universities abroad – There is no denying that studies at universities abroad are much better. The chances of getting a good job also increase, but this can be financially detrimental. To apply for a genetic engineering course at a foreign university, familiarize yourself with the university’s application process by visiting their website. There is a lot of variation here, so we can’t give a general approach.
Nuclear engineering professions
At this point, you already have an idea of what topics to study and how to do it. In this section, we discuss the various professional tasks available to genetic engineers. So, to get started, you’re going to do a lot of research. You can work as a principal investigator or even assist a researcher early in your career. Many graduates work as technicians, managers or researchers. It also largely depends on your level of education and experience. If you do not wish to work in research, there are also academic options. You can work with universities that teach genetic engineering or biomedicine. This will help you stay in the academic field. Another option is to become a medical or science writer. In this role you will publish research papers following clinical trials. Thus, you will be offered many professions after your education and you can choose one according to your preference.
Genetic Engineers Office of Personnel
Finding a good job is more important than finding a good college. Your career depends on it, and your salary depends on the recruiter. Genetic engineers are hired by medical companies, research centers, hospitals, agricultural companies, pharmaceutical companies, forensic research organizations and even government agencies. Below are some of the top recruiters for genetic engineers.
- Apollo Hospital
- Dr. Reddy.
- International Centre for Gene Technology and Biotechnology
- Sun Pharma
- Tata Institute for Genetics and Society
- Tata Memorial
Salary scales for genetic engineers
The study of genetic engineering is the most involved part of the work. Now let’s see what kind of return you will get on your investment. The salary depends on many factors, and both your experience and school play an important role. If you work as an intern or apprentice, you can expect an income of about Rs 3 lakhs per year. However, this is not the case for researchers and laboratory technicians. You can expect a salary of Rs 3.5 lakh to Rs 6 lakh per annum. For supervisors and research assistants, the salary usually does not exceed If you are a senior scientist, you can earn about 18 lakhs per year. It should be noted that these are the first areas and there are no limits to growth. It all depends on your career and your portfolio. Benefits of a genetic engineer It is always interesting to learn about the pros and cons of a particular position. Knowing the benefits will make it easier for you to choose a domain. In this section you will find some of the benefits of being a GM. Check them out below.
- Helping the community – The first benefit of being a GM is that you are helping the community by working on a project. They have the ability to create a new culture or a modified species that can better serve society. Most genetic engineers work in the field of agriculture, which requires taking into account the pressure on resources.
- Research and Innovation – If you love research and development, this is the job for you. They learn new things and are innovative. They discover a fundamental way of life and get the chance to create something new.
- Well-paid jobs – genetic engineers are well paid. The only thing to keep in mind here is that you need to be clear about your fundamentals and have a good organization. For each patent obtained, you also earn royalties and good commissions on the patents.
- Difference with MBBS – When we talk about medicine in India, most people think of becoming a doctor. Genetic engineering is something different from the usual medical line, and you will no doubt be glad you chose this particular field.
Disadvantages of being a genetic engineer As for the other side of the coin, every profession you choose has its drawbacks. In this section, we have listed some of the disadvantages of GM status. Check them out below.
- Risky work – When you’re modifying DNA or working with something at the molecular level, there’s always a chance that something could go wrong. You create a pathogen that can be very contagious. They can also produce various growths that can harm others. There are certainly ethical issues associated with genetic engineering, and they cannot be ignored.
- It takes time – you will never get quick results if you work. This work requires a lot of patience on your part, and there is no way to speed up the process. You have to give yourself time, and that will be the real scenario.
- An Emerging Field – Gene technology has come a long way recently, but there is still a lot to do in this field. There are few companies left in this field, and they often hire people with master’s or doctoral degrees. Sometimes it’s hard to find work, especially if you’re not one of the cream of the crop.
Final assessment In this article, we have discussed the details of genetic engineering. The field has its advantages and disadvantages. There is no doubt that genetic engineering is the way to go and people will need it to meet the supply and demand curve. The career opportunities are great, but at the same time very demanding. If you are interested in biology and want to choose something unique, you can become a genetic engineer. It’s a very respectable job and you can learn a lot from it. If you have any questions about the domain, don’t hesitate to send us an email. We will do our best to help you and answer your questions.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I become a genetic engineer?
Every day, thousands of people are currently searching for how to become a genetic engineer in India. If you are one of those people, you can use this article to learn how to start your career in this field. If you have a knack for the process of assembling things, you could be a genetic engineer in the future. DNA engineering is a process of altering genetic material in a way that improves or alters the DNA. Given the right conditions, it can give rise to a wide range of organisms, such as bacteria, plants, and insects. The procedure is regulated by the Genetic Engineering Approval Committee of India (GEAC).
How can I become a genetic engineer after 12th?
Genetic engineering is a relatively new field of science, but it is already showing great potential to solve some of our most pressing problems. This is because it has the ability to modify living organisms in a way that is beneficial to humankind. Genetic engineering offers the possibility of increasing food production, modifying crops for better taste and increased health benefits, and even creating new medicines to cure diseases. Becoming a genetic engineer never gets old. The field of engineering is one of the most popular among university students in India and a keen interest in it has led to a burgeoning industry of genetic engineering. As a genetic engineer, you will be designing,
Is Neet required for genetic engineering?
(TL;DR) Neet is not required for genetic engineering. We get a lot of comments on this one every day and so wanted to post a follow up to the previous post on the topic. If you are interested in genetic engineering careers and would like to know more about the alternatives available to you, please read on. Genetic engineering and cloning are among the most controversial topics in the field of science today. While most of us can agree that they are morally unacceptable in any form, these two concepts remain controversial because of the potential risks they pose to human health and the environment.
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