Microbiologists are scientists who study the world of microorganisms which are organisms that are too small for the unaided eye to see, hence, the need for the use of microscopes to see and study them.
Some of these microorganisms are harmful to humans, animals, or plants. On the other hand, many microorganisms are useful because they perform functions that are essential for life on earth and can be employed in industry and for medical purpose .
Microbiologists study the interaction of microorganisms with people and how they affect our lives and the roles these minute organisms play in the environment.
Microbiologists work in hospitals, universities, medical schools, government laboratories, and almost every industry. They specialize in various areas ranging from agriculture to space industry.
Typical Employers Of Microbiologists
Since Microbiology as a course is interwoven with other areas of Biology such as Genetics, Molecular Biology and Immunology, it follows that there are opportunities for Microbiology-related careers in a wide range of sections. Typical employers of microbiologists include:
a. Healthcare organizations and private hospitals;
b. Public health organizations;
c. Environmental organizations;
d. Industries such as Petroleum, Pharmaceuticals, Food and Drink, Toiletries, Water and Biotechnology companies;
e. Forensic science laboratories;
f. Public funded research organizations; and
g. Public education institutions.
However, the career opportunities you can choose from as a microbiologist will depend on the level of education and training you receive.
For instance, a baccalaureate degree in Microbiology will help in qualifying you for many technical, research, and clinical positions, some of which include:
1. Clinical and Veterinary Microbiologists, Medical Technologists
These experts generally work in veterinary clinics or hospitals to identify disease causing microorganisms (microbes) in humans and animals.
2. Food, Industrial or Environmental Microbiologists, and Quality Assurance Technologists
Working in Industries, hospitals, or government agencies (e.g. NAFDAC, SON,etc.),these experts check for the quality and safety of vitamins, vaccines, antibiotics, and antiseptics. They also identify harmful microorganisms in water, food, dairy, pharmaceutical and environmental products.
3. Research Assistant
Such microbiologists provide technical support to conduct research working in a team with other scientists and a research director. They may work in an industrial, university, government, or medical school laboratory.
4. Sales or Technical Representatives
Microbiologists can provide information about pharmaceuticals and other medical or scientific products to prospective customers.
Note: Apart from these laboratory and technical jobs, there are several other career paths a holder of Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology can take.
Combining Microbiology with other disciplines such as Education, Business, or journalism, presents an even wider range of career options which include teaching in high school, scientific sales, science writing for the general public, regulatory affairs, or public relations.
A Microbiology graduate is also exposed to the necessary foundation to advance their education in the medical, veterinary, dental or legal fields.
To further broaden your career choices, an advanced degree in Microbiology is necessary. While a Masters degree will qualify you for a career as a laboratory supervisor or an instructor at a community or junior college, a doctoral degree, PhD (or its equivalent) is almost always required for higher level positions in Microbiology and other sciences.
With a PhD in Microbiology, a Microbiologist could be qualified to perform independent research, teach undergraduate and graduate students, or assume executive level responsibilities in government and industry.
5. Another set of lucrative job opportunities for Microbiologists abound in the petroleum industry
Petroleum Microbiology falls under Environmental Microbiology. As a Petroleum Microbiologist, you can be employed for monitoring and studying oilfield microorganisms that can cause corrosion of oil/gas pipelines and production installations; microbes that make sweet oil and gas reservoir become sour; perhaps you may also be involved in using microorganisms to recover additional oil from spent oil reservoirs or employing microorganisms to convert non-recoverable crude oil to natural gas (methane).
Bio-remediation is another area of exploits for a Microbiologist in Nigeria due to widespread oil pollution and it involves employing microorganisms to clean-up oil polluted areas such as Ogoni land or oily wastes.
Note: Some top restaurants are also employing microbiologists to verify the quality of the products they are using.
Also search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships for a better chance of landing a good job.
It is also noteworthy to state that employers value the scientific, analytical and problem-solving skills developed by Microbiology graduates.
Jobs that are directly related to a degree in Microbiology include:
Biomedical Scientist, Biotechnologist, Clinical research associate, Food technologist, Healthcare scientist (Immunology), Microbiologist, Nanotechnologist, Pharmacologist, Research scientist (Life sciences), Technical brewer, Water quality scientist and so on.
Jobs where a degree in Microbiology will be useful include:
Ecologist, Forensic scientist, Marine biologist, Physician associate, and Science writer.
Please be advised not to restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here as many employers accept applications from graduates with degrees in any field.
The following establishments in Nigeria have put up job vacancies on their portals for the service of a Microbiologist at one time or the other thus, here are some of the places you can work as a Microbiologist in Nigeria. The positions advertised are in front of each establishment:
1. Fan Milk Plc.,Ibadan,Oyo.- Quality Control Officer.
2. Spark Light Hospital Limited- Laboratory Technician.
3. Nile University of Nigeria, Abuja- Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor, Professor.
4. Edge Africa, Rivers- Graduate Entrepreneurial Brand Influencer (GEBI).
5. Tasty Time Nigeria Limited, Lagos- Quality Control Manager.
6. Firm Medical Diagnostics, Lagos- Medical Laboratory Technician.
7. Society for Family Health, Abuja- Laboratory Scientist/Quality Specialist.
8. Ahmadu Bello University, Abuja- Field Epidemiologist and Laboratory Trainer.
9. Bradfield Consulting, Ondo- Laboratory Technician.
10. Nampak Nigeria Limited, Lagos- Quality Assurance Inspector/Microbiologist.
11. Vitachem Limited, Lagos- Laboratory scientist.
12. LS Scientific Limited, Lagos- Laboratory Analyst.
13. Osten Laboratory Limited, Port Harcourt- Graduate Laboratory Intern.
14. European Haematology Association (EHA), Kano- Laboratory Scientist.
15. ETAD Consultancy advertised for their client, a Newly established Hotel in Ajah, Lagos- Graduate Food Microbiologist.
16. Desert Snow Associates Limited, Abuja- Medical Laboratory Scientist.
17. Chrisland University, Owode- Reader (Microbiology).
18. Imo State University, Owerri- Lecturer (Microbiology).
Read Also: History of Nigerian Educational System
Below are establishments that simply stated “Microbiologist” as the position for job vacancy:
19. Promisidor Nigeria, Lagos.
20. Sweet-Aroma Foods Limited, Oyo.
21. Euro Global Foods and Distilleries Limited, Ogun.
22. Cadbury Nigeria Plc., Lagos.
23. Transcorp Plc.
24. Nigerian Bottling Company Limited (NBC).
25. CIO and Sons Enterprises, Plateau, Jos.
26. Flour Mills Nigeria Plc., Lagos.
27. Tropical Naturals Limited, Lagos.
28. Animal Care Services Konsult Nigeria Limited, Ogun.
29. Living Witness Limited, Lagos.
30. Denna Rossi (A beverage company).
31. Agro-Processing companies.
32. Nestle Nigeria Plc., Abuja.
33. Animal Care Services Konsult Nigeria Limited, Delta.
34. Food Processing Companies.
35. Morison Industries Plc.
36. Chemiron International Limited, Lagos.
37. Mayer & Baker Nigeria Plc., Ogun.
38. InterCEDD Health Products Limited (IHP), Imo.
39. EZ37 Solutions Limited, Oyo.
40. MagProtein Limited, Lagos.
41. S & S Hotels And Suites, Lagos.
42. Bizafin Consulting Services, Lagos.
43. Reactor Beverages Limited, Lagos.
44. Manufacturing Companies.
45. Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Companies.
46. Giant Beverages Limited, Lagos.
47. Nigerian Navy.
The list is quite long and surely will continue because any establishment, be it educational, medical or manufacturing whose business is similar to any of those listed above will certainly need the services of a Microbiologist.
Besides you can check relevant job vacancy sites to see any establishment advertising a job opportunity for a Microbiologist in Nigeria.
Michael Stevens Consultancy, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, is one of the consultancy groups that will link you to vacancies from top companies in Nigeria.
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