Graduating in May? Brainstorming Career Options? Consider This.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has radically changed the employment landscape in North Carolina, nationwide and around the world.  While the economic downturn resulting from the pandemic has created vast uncertainties, many PhDs in the biomedical sciences will find it is also a time of unprecedented opportunity. 

Currently, companies across the nation are restructuring their business models to fill shortages of medical equipment and PPE.  Jobs in health care, pharmaceuticals and biomedical research can be expected to grow significantly in the coming months.  Government leaders on both sides of the aisle are demanding a return of pharmaceutical and other health-related manufacturing to the United States.  And while some start-ups may find this a trying time, others are likely to spring up or adapt to fill unmet needs. 

PhD's seeking work in higher education may also see an increase in job postings as, historically, colleges and universities have seen an increase in applications during economic downturns.  As uncertainty in the job market increases, many make the decision to return to school for additional training or to pursue a degree.  The COVID-19 pandemic has also raised awareness of the vital roles played by scientists and researchers.  These factors may contribute to increased opportunities in teaching at all levels.  

If you are planning to graduate in May or soon after, I encourage you to reach out to OBGE Career & Professional Development ( or to my colleagues at the Duke Career Center.  Whether you are still struggling to identify a career path or you already have an offer in hand, we are available to help you through the career development and job search process.

For more on the employment landscape: