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Moving from Biotech to Forensic Science - Crime Scene Investigations?

PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2005 4:20 pm
by Bill Estes
Hi,

I've planned on a biotechnology career, but after a couple of years of watching CSI I am starting to think that I'd enjoy working in a crime lab.

Does anyone know what the first step should be? I'm going to have a graduate degree in biology soon, and I can get a PhD in whatever subject matter I can to optimize my chances in Forensic Science. Or, is the PhD not even necessary in this field?


Moving from Biotech to Forensic Science - Crime Scene Investigations?

PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2005 6:39 pm
by Kelly Ann
Please note that you could be disappointed in forensics if your expectations are solely based on CSI or any other TV show ...

However, there are several ways to get into forensics if you are truly interested ...

1) Many schools have classes or even forensic programs (but with varying specialties).

2) Many states have crime labs to which you can apply to work as a research technician. However, I learned that the positions arn't always as interesting as you think. For example, in California, they are establishing a database with inmates DNA but after 1000 sequencing reactions, you may discover the position will get boring.

3) The FBI, CIA, and other government agencies (including the military branches) have forensic divisions. The hiring process can be long (as they look at other characteristics besides science experience). However, a friend who is applying to be a special agent in the FBI, was fast-tracked because of her advanced degree in biochemistry and the current interest in bioterrism.

While I don't know much about forensics, I would suggest a google search of academic programs as well as government agencies. If you have an idea of what you want to do, you could try to find a job desciption which would give you an idea of what you need to do to be qualified.

Moving from Biotech to Forensic Science - Crime Scene Investigations?

PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2005 6:49 pm
by Kim
Check out University of New Haven. It has one of the best forensic programs in the US. Dr Henry Lee is a faculty there.

But you should know that forensic is not as glamourous as shown on TV. In reality, it is a very smelly and dirty business.

http://www.gradprofiles.com/u-new-haven-forensics.html
http://www.newhaven.edu/psps/forensicscience.html