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Career Switch

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Career Switch

Postby Zen » Thu Jan 20, 2005 8:48 pm

Ever since I finished my first postdoc in the field of medical microbiology, I've been planning to switch into the field of cancer biology. It has been a year and half now and yet I still can't find a job, be it academics or industry, in this new field. It seems that no one is willing to take me in just because I don't have much experience in human medical research even though I consider myself as a pretty competent researcher in biochemistry and molecular biology. I wonder if anyone have a similar experience and how they have managed to overcome the dilemma?
Zen
 

Career Switch

Postby Teresa » Fri Jan 21, 2005 11:41 am

Zen,

I switched from plant research to cancer research in acedemia. In my experience it was preparation (and good references) that made this possible. For each lab I contacted I made sure that I was familiar with the PI's papers! I also had a ready explanation for my enthusiasm to change fields as well as how my previous skills/ experience would be immediately useful to their lab. It is not that unusual to change fields in science but the PI does need to see your value as you will likely need more support. If you demonstrate your motivation then your different background may be perceived as an asset (a fresh point of view) and they will worry less about having to train you.

I have no idea if this strategy will work for industry positions...

Good luck and keep trying!
Teresa
 
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