Post # 1
I am currently working toward the finishing stages of a masters degree in cell/molecular biology. I’ve had several internships in the same field of my degree, basically cell/molecular technique lab based experience, as well as my masters degree requiring 2 years of research experience under a mentor at the university I attend, culminating in a thesis dissertation.
I’m interested in pursuing a career in clinical research, however every job requires experience (like everything), and I don’t have the direct experience as a CRA. So I guess my question is, how did some of you get your job in this field, what qualification/degree/experience? What exactly do you do day to day? Do you like your job? Any other information you think might help me in my search or to make myself a better applicant for a position like this.
Post # 2
FutureMrsphD: I’m in a different field, but also a master’s program in an area where clinical research experience is necessary. Mine has come through research internships and through experience with my mentor. Is it possible that you could ask your mentor for suggestions or advice as to how to get the experience you need? If not, is there a professor in your program with whom you have a good relationship that you help guide you?
Post # 3
dulcevida: I think I may have not been completely clear, I don’t need the experience to graduate from my program. I was hoping to get a job in this field following graduation in a couple months.
Post # 4
FutureMrsphD: Yes, I understood that lol. The intent of my post was to ask if you have a professor that can guide you as to how to gain the experience you need to enter the field. In my department professors typically have the experience that students want and need to advance professionally. Thus, I have found their advisement for how to meet industry standards especially helpful in comparison to advice recieved from other students or recent graduates.
I don’t want to take for granted that the opportunity I inquired about is available to you. I made the suggestion because it has been helpful to me and I offered it as an option in hopes that it would also be helpful to you. In my personal experience my mentor has been immeasurably beneficial in helping me to become as professionally attractive as possible for applying to PhD programs or for entering the workforce. Last year, I also set up a meeting with a professor in my department who I respect a great deal. She is renowned in my field and has achieved many of my professional aspirations. I told her my goals and she gave be invaluable information as to the steps I need to take and experience I need to garner while a student and upon graduation in order to achieve my goals. Her advice has guided me as I have gained experience that is necessary to exceed industry expectations for both professional positions and PhD applicants. As a result of these discussions, when I am ready to move forward I have what is necessary to do so.
Post # 5
Oh man, you’re not gonna like this.
I got an entry level job at a corporate chain type medical office at 21 or so, it was the first place that called me when I was job searching. When I decided that environment wasn’t for me, I got a job at another “chain” company in the same field. After many years there, I was offered a reception position at a private office. In my 5 years here, I have moved up through most all positions, and our Research department asked for my help now and then. My work with them and my quality of work impressed them and I frequently began filling in until I was offered a position in the Research department.
once in the department, the office payed for my trainings and certifications. While I’m not an MD who oversees the patients, i play a huge role in facilitating our clinical trials.
Maybe not what you’re looking for, I thought I’d share my experience.