A career in biosecurity gives a person the ability to make a difference while simultaneously enjoying a career with high salary potentials, exciting experiences, and opportunities for growth. A biosecurity specialist working in the public health field will also have the benefit of many jobs being available, as public health careers continue to flourish when they economy may not.
Biosecurity specialists perform important tasks when it comes to keeping the public safe from a variety of different public health hazards and emergencies, and for anyone looking for a career in public health that provides many different personal and professional rewards, this is one career path worth reading more about.
What Is A Biosecurity Specialist?
A biosecurity specialist in the field of public health is a type of professional who is tasked with developing and implementing different safety measures related to biosecurity. Biosecurity specialists will create plans and develop new procedures to ensure that a population within a region, including any public health professionals present, has a safety protocol to follow should a biological emergency or risk occur.
Nature of Work
On a typical day, a biosecurity specialist may be found performing any of the following jobs:
- Developing baseline assessment reports related to biosecurity
- Training other biosecurity or emergency preparedness specialists in all biosecurity emergency procedures, methods, and protocols.
- Working with laboratory specialists to assess the biosecurity and safety of any lab facilities
- Developing various biosecurity analysis reports outlining procedures and safety measures to other public health professionals
- Assessing any bio risks that may be present within a public health facility, and creating solutions to fix any biosecurity hazards
- Researching and keeping up to date on any biosecurity risks that may be present within a public health setting
Biosecurity specialists provide a much needed service around any type of public health setting, as these professionals are responsible for assessing and preparing for any biohazards or risks that may arise during the course of a public health study or project. Keeping populations and workers safe in any type of emergency is important to keeping a satisfactory level of overall public health, and this is one of the many important tasks that biosecurity specialists are given to perform.
Education And Training
A professional biosecurity specialist should hold a master’s degree in the field of biosecurity as well a biotechnology and disaster preparedness. While a higher degree may be desired, it is often found to not be necessary to work as a professional biosecurity specialist in public health. The first step in acquiring this degree is to complete an undergraduate bachelor’s degree program which will typically last around 4 years. Majoring in a public health or biology related field is often recommended, while taking courses that involve biosecurity related subjects such as science and mathematics classes.
Once a bachelor’s degree in biosecurity is earned, a person will then go on to work to achieve their master’s degree in biosecurity, and this will include a 2 year master’s degree program at the university of an individual person’s choosing. It is always best to research different universities to find an accredited program before committing to any master’s degree track.
Post graduate certificates in biosecurity are available through exams and programs for those who wish to become certified biosecurity specialists. Certification can help a person to gain a strong foothold in the professional biosecurity field, and it is often recommended that students achieve these post graduate certifications. A post graduate certification will need to be renewed once every few years through continuing education to ensure a professional remains certified in their field.
The need for new biosecurity specialists is projected to grow by around 12% by the year 2022, and this means that a great variety of job openings are expected in the field for waiting qualified professionals. As in many public health related jobs, the market for biosecurity specialists shows no signs of stopping. The average yearly salary for a biosecurity specialist is a handsome one at around $55,000 per year, however different working environments and levels of experience may cause this figure to vary. Those working for government public health agencies, or those with many years of experience, have the opportunity to grow their yearly salary potential to numbers much higher than the average.