Future career - Molecular Life Sciences

The labour market for Molecular Life Sciences graduates is still looking good: the large majority finds a job within a few months. About 80% starts a PhD research. In the Netherlands you get a salary for doing a PhD; in Dutch this job is called AIO = "assistant in opleiding". After finishing your PhD you get the Dutch Doctor title; you are allowed to put Dr. in front of your name.
After graduation about one third of the Molecular life Science graduates stays at a university or research institute; one third goes to the industry like in the column to the right ; and one third finds a job in consultancy, service industries or governmental organisations. More than 90% of the Dutch graduates stays in the Netherlands.


There are probably no two individuals with the same career. There just are too many possibilities. Here you find some general sketches of possible careers. This gives you also some idea on possible subsequent jobs.

Usually a career in industry starts after your PhD. At least, as far as the Research and Development (R&D) departments are concerned. If you want to enroll directly in management positions you may well do without a PhD. In a R&D department you do high quality research to develop new products and to improve existing ones. After a few years the decision is made on your career profile. After quite some years of research many people tend to be in for something else. Many welcome the possibilities in industry to enter management positions, while others continue their research as senior scientists.

You can find graduates from our program in many places, not restricted to the academia or industry. There are people working for the government, writing articles for (scientific) papers, making policies in all sorts of fields, working for consultancy bureaus, etcetera.

A professional academic career usually starts with a PhD followed by a post-doc. If you are a domestic student, most often you do your PhD in The Netherlands and your post-doc somewhere else, typically in Europe, North America or Oceania. After that you acquire a position at a university or research institute, often in the form of a tenure or habilitation track (depending on the country). The highest rank that you can reach is that of (full) professor. There are professors in microbiology, physical chemistry, cell biology, organic chemistry, biotechnology, etcetera, who did our MSc program in Molecular Life Sciences.

Chemistry Teacher at secondary school

After following some courses in education and an education internship it is possible to become a full registered teacher in Chemistry ('eerstegraadsbevoegdheid Scheikunde'). After this you follow the education master  of the university of Utrecht or Radboud University Nijmegen. Usuallly half year of education courses followed during the MSc Molecular Life Sciences count as a part this eduction master.The other year will be extra after your graduation in Wageningen. The Dutch government provides some extra financial support for students following the education master for chemistry

For orientation on education please visit the site of the education minor and the site of Education and Competence studies of Wageningen University.  

Alumni testimonials

Back to MSc Molecular Life Sciences