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How do I Become a Biotechnology Technician?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 12 November 2016
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A biotechnology technician works to assist with finding and employing processes that use living organisms to improve health, the environment, products, and drugs. He helps scientists to collect information and samples, perform experiments, and keep records of their findings. If you want to become a biotechnology technician, you'll likely have to start by completing high school or earning a general educational development (GED) diploma. You may then go on to enroll in a school that offers a laboratory technology or biology technician program. In most cases, these programs can be found at colleges, community colleges, or technical schools, and you can usually become a biotechnology technician in about two years.

If you decide to become a biotechnology technician, you'll work in the life sciences field. Your job typically will involve helping scientists with studying living organisms and finding ways to use their processes to improve life for human beings. For example, you may assist scientists with developing therapies for genetic conditions or creating new vaccines. You may also assist scientists in looking for ways to help the environment restore itself or improve the nutritional makeup of produce and livestock. To do well in this job, you'll usually have to know how to use lab equipment, collect samples, perform tests, keep accurate records, and maintain laboratory equipment.

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To become a biotechnology technician, you'll first have to graduate from high school or earn an equivalent diploma. Taking advanced science and math courses, including biology, chemistry, and algebra, in high school may help you to build a good foundation of knowledge you can use in your biotechnology program. After graduating from high school or earning a GED, you may enroll in a two-year biotechnology or laboratory technology program that ends with a diploma, certificate, or associate's degree. It's important to note that some employers prefer to hire individuals who have bachelor's degrees in biology or a related science instead of those with less education. As such, you may do well to check job listings in your area before you choose an educational path.

Once you have earned a degree, certificate, or diploma, you can start to look for a job as a biotechnology technician. You may get help through the job placement office at your school or enlist the assistance of an employment agency. You may also look for help wanted ads in newspapers and via online job-listing services. Additionally, you may find unadvertised opportunities by contacting science, agricultural, and pharmaceutical companies; colleges and universities; and even government organizations to learn about possible job openings.

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