HHS Research Careers
People with bachelor’s degrees in chemistry or chemical engineering can find a range of relatively high paying employment opportunities with HHS.
Either working at the FDA, evaluating applications and label information on new drugs, or working as an interdisciplinary scientist at the National Institutes of Health, people bring together their experience and education in a team-based environment to help improve health in the US. Generally, these positions require at least a BA in Chemistry (or Biology, or another life science) and lots of relevant experience. Entry-level positions are in the $40,000 – 50,000 range, with the supervisory posts in the $100,000 – 130,000 range.
Clinical Research Nurse
At the NIH, there are plenty of nursing job opportunities. One career path is a clinical research nurse. These professionals work directly with patients who are participating in research studies. Requirements for this job include a degree from a professional nursing program, a current license as a professional nurse, and medical, surgical or neuroscience experience. These positions are located in the Washington, DC area, and the pay range is around $50,000 – 80,000 per year.
Unlike your local doctor, who looks at how diseases and injuries affect you, as an individual, epidemiologists look at diseases and conditions on the larger scale. They might investigate the causes of a large outbreak of food poisoning to determine where the outbreak originated and what factors caused it to happen. Since it would be impossible to interview or examine every single person affected by an epidemic like that, epidemiologists study information that others have collected and look for patterns. Epidemiologists also look at large-scale data to find links between causes and effects. For example, they are the people behind the data that proved the connection between smoking and lung cancer, or between certain drugs and birth defects. HHS employs epidemiologists at both the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and at the National Institutes for Health.
This job requires a very specific background and training, and it can be extremely rewarding, especially if you like science, want to work in the medical field, but don’t particularly want to work with patients on a daily basis. The position requires at least a four-year degree in a field like biochemistry, epidemiology, or pharmacology. It also requires prior experience in the field. This is a long-term career path with a large range of pay, from about $43,000 – 108,000 per year.
Other HHS Jobs
Medical Technologist (Indian Health Service)
A medical technologist usually works in a medical lab.
If you have ever been to the doctor and had blood drawn to test for high cholesterol, blood sugar levels, or anemia, then a medical technologist was probably the person who performed the actual tests on the samples. Some medical technologists actually take blood, but others work in the lab and run samples. This would be a great job for someone who enjoys science and scientific procedures. Though there are medical technologist jobs all over the country, in most hospitals and in independent labs, HHS’ main hiring need for this job is through the Indian Health Service (IHS).
Members of an Indian tribe receive preference in hiring for these positions, which are located across the country in areas where HIS has a presence. The typical salary range for this position is $48,000 – 69,000 per year.
Medical Lab Technician
This is the entry-level position in the medical lab. The medical lab technician works with medical technologists to run lab tests. They might prepare slides, analyze samples, and look for signs of trouble. This position usually requires a high school diploma. The majority of these positions with HHS are through the Indian Health Service, and are located throughout the country, wherever the IHS has an established presence. The pay range for this position is $30,000 – 47,000 per year.