A BS in biomedical engineering allows the graduate to enter a professional career without further graduate study. NJIT's BME program prepares its students to function as engineers who can be highly successful in their first job.
Graduates of the NJIT's Department of Biomedical Engineering have found employment as design engineers, development engineers, process and manufacturing engineers, and as product managers. NJIT's location in New Jersey provides proximity to the nation's largest concentration of medical device and pharmaceutical companies. Over 500 large and small biomedical businesses are located within 50 miles of the campus. Biomedicine is now New Jersey's largest industry.
If a student has an interest in engineering, then BME is a wonderful path to medical school. Contrary to public opinion, one does not need to major in biology to be admitted to medical or dental school.
The undergraduate BME curriculum provides a strong preparation for both medicine and dentistry. Courses required for admission to medical and dental schools fit naturally into a BME student's program of study. The same problem solving skills that are at the core of an engineering education are essential in diagnosing and treating patients. As both medicine and dentistry become increasingly dependent on technology, engineering skills will even more valuable in medical and dental practice.
BME is an excellent preparation for a career in engineering in large, medium and start-up companies. It also prepares one very well for careers in management, medical administration, sales, and regulatory practices. Biomedical engineering graduates from NJIT have gone on to graduate study in medicine, dentistry, physical therapy, management and law, as well as biomedical engineering.
No one can know if the rapid growth of BME will continue at its current pace. All fields are susceptible to fluctuations in the economy. However, if we consider the explosion in scientific and medical knowledge of recent years, we can see that there are enormous opportunities to use that knowledge in the development of new medical devices and healthcare systems. The importance of healthcare in the U.S. appears to be increasing yearly and bodes very well for the future of biomedical engineering.
Like most new fields, BME developed because of the need to address complex problems that require interdisciplinary knowledge. A strong BME program will provide students with the skills necessary to work as engineers as well as provide physiological and biological foundations that are not included in more traditional engineering programs. According to the National Science Foundation, BME is the fastest growing branch of engineering in terms of student enrollment.
A given quantity of finished goods requires a given quantity of raw materials and components to make them. Materials requirement planning systems are computerized tools that manage when materials must be ordered to supply production at a later date. MRP is effective when output quantities are known. Small business owners are often their own MRP systems, storing the information needed to supply production in their knowledge and experience. Activities such as computer tracking inventory and forecasting demand are MRP activities.
Flow control, also called optimized production technology, focuses on the efficient flow of material through the production process. The philosophy of flow control focuses on bottlenecks. For example, an owner using flow control will not buy a machine capable of 1,000 units an hour if supply is only 500 units. Examine systems and determine where lowest flow is experienced, then address that point and make sure it operates at full capacity. Flow control applies well where maximum productivity is required.
Biomedical engineers held about 16,000 jobs in 2008. Manufacturing industries employed 36 percent of all biomedical engineers, primarily in the pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing and medical instruments and supplies industries. Many others worked for hospitals. Some also worked for government agencies or as independent consultants.
Biomedical Engineering is extremely attractive to women as a degree program and career. Women earn a greater percentage of college degrees in Biomedical Engineering than any other engineering discipline, according to the American Society for Engineering education. Among those earning B.S. degrees in biomedical engineering, 39% were awarded to women in 2000; at the master's level, 34% of biomedical degrees awarded went to women; and at the doctoral level, 32% of biomedical engineering degrees awarded went to women.
The attractions for many women are: the flexibility and inherent creativity of the discipline relative to other engineering areas; the ability to work in a profession that strives to improve the quality of people's lives; the existing critical mass of women in medical professions; and the integration of biological sciences.