Recommendations for a Student?

Bob xyzbbruner at uclink4.berkeley.edu
Tue Jan 14 21:48:17 EST 2003


On 13 Jan 2003 23:26:36 GMT, crystalviolent at aol.com (Crystalviolent)
wrote:

>In article <lpHU9.1457$Pw.1307 at news1.central.cox.net>, "Pnakotus"
><utoshi at hotmail.com> writes:
>
>>career as a microbiologist
>

I don't really agree wirth most of what Crystalviolent wrote. But
there is much room for opinion here, especially since the original
question was so broad.


>industrial/commercial/academic - look at a school with 'tech' in its name (like
>VPI)

The name of the school is irrelevant. Most colleges were named long
ago; if such words in their name once had some relevance, it has long
since been lost, and anyway probably did not apply to microbiology.


>medical/academic - find a school with a medical center attached (like UCLA)

possibly, if you really want to emphasize the medical aspects. But be
careful about excluding a school based on this point.

>
>go on line and look for the course catalog in the department of bacteriology or
>microbiology 
>
>no bacti department? look for another school; biology is too broad and wont
>give you
>specialized courses in microbes

That is an interesting point, but the conclusion is overly broad.
There are many reasons why a college is organized one way or another,
or a department is named one thing or another. Sometimes depts just
change name, to keep up with some perceived trend. Microbiology is a
broad subject, and parts of it may reasonably be found in depts with a
variety of names. In some cases, you may find a large bio dept, with a
formalized microbiol program within in. Further, one important issue
is school size. A large school is more likely to have a separate
microbiol dept than is a small school, yet there are advantages to
small schools (smaller classes, more opportunity to do undergrad
research, generally less impersonal); note this depends on the school
and cannot be assumed simply from size.

What should you do? If in US, check the web site for the American
Society for Microbiology, www.asmusa.org. They maintain a list of
programs, which i assume is there. Look for schools that otherwise
interest you. If you can define your interests more narrowly than just
microbiology, that may help you choose. (But narrowing your intersets
is not necesarily good, so don't force it.) Maybe read some in your
field of interest, and see where interesting work is going on.

bob



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