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Career and Education Opportunities for Biologists in Chicago, Illinois

Biologists can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Chicago, Illinois area. The national trend for biologists sees this job pool growing by about 21.0% over the next eight years. Biologists generally research or study basic principles of plant and animal life, such as origin, relationship, and functions.

The average wage in the general category of Life Sciences jobs is $32 per hour or $65,585 per year in Illinois, and an average of $30 per hour or $62,473 per year nationwide. People working as biologists can fill a number of jobs, such as: mycologist, bioinformatics specialist, and genetic engineer.

There are thirty-one schools within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can study to be a biologist, among 180 schools of higher education total in the Chicago area. Biologists usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years studying to be a biologist if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Biologist

Biologist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, biologists research or study basic principles of plant and animal life, such as origin, relationship, and functions.

Biologists represent employers in technical capacities at conferences. They also design pest management and control measures, and conduct risk assessments pertaining to pest exclusion using scientific methods. Equally important, biologists have to communicate test results to state and federal representatives and to the general public. Finally, biologists program and use computers to store, process and analyze data.

Every day, biologists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to piece together evidence to, in some sense, diagnose what is going on in a situation. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for biologists to teach, supervise students and perform research at universities and colleges. They are often called upon to collect and analyze biological data about relationships among and between organisms and their environment. They also design and maintain liaisons and effective working relations with groups and individuals and the public to foster cooperative management strategies or to evolve data and interpret findings. They are sometimes expected to study aquatic plants and animals and environmental conditions affecting them such as radioactivity or pollution. Somewhat less frequently, biologists are also expected to communicate test results to state and federal representatives and to the general public.

Biologists sometimes are asked to measure salinity and other physical conditions of water to establish their relationship to aquatic life. They also have to be able to design methods and apparatus for securing representative plant or soil samples And finally, they sometimes have to study reactions of plants and marine species to parasites.

Like many other jobs, biologists must be thorough and dependable and be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Environmental Health and Safety Specialist. Conduct research or perform investigation for the purpose of identifying, abating, or eliminating sources of pollutants or hazards that affect either the environment or the health of the population. Utilizing knowledge of various scientific disciplines may collect, synthesize, and take action based on data derived from measurements or observations of air, food, and other sources.
  • Epidemiologist. Investigate and describe the determinants and distribution of disease, disability, and other health outcomes and develop the means for prevention and control.
  • Food Technologist. Use chemistry, microbiology, and other sciences to study the principles underlying the processing and deterioration of foods; analyze food content to determine levels of vitamins, fat, and protein; discover new food sources; research ways to make processed foods safe, palatable, and healthful; and apply food science knowledge to determine best ways to process, package, and distribute food.
  • Forester. Manage forested lands for economic, recreational, and conservation purposes. May inventory the type, amount, and location of standing timber, appraise the timber's worth, negotiate the purchase, and draw up contracts for procurement. May determine how to conserve wildlife habitats, creek beds, and soil stability, and how best to comply with environmental regulations. May devise plans for planting and growing new trees, monitor trees for healthy growth, and determine the best time for harvesting. Develop forest management plans for public and privately-owned forested lands.
  • Medical Scientist. Conduct research dealing with the understanding of human diseases and the improvement of human health. Engage in clinical investigation or other research, production, or related activities.
  • Microbiologist. Investigate the growth, structure, and other characteristics of microscopic organisms, such as bacteria, algae, or fungi. Includes medical microbiologists who study the relationship between organisms and disease or the effects of antibiotics on microorganisms.
  • Natural Resource Manager. Research or study range land management practices to provide sustained production of forage, livestock, and wildlife.
  • Scientist. Study the chemical composition and physical principles of living cells and organisms, their electrical and mechanical energy, and related phenomena. May conduct research to further understanding of the complex chemical combinations and reactions involved in metabolism, reproduction, and heredity. May determine the effects of foods, drugs, and other substances on tissues and vital processes of living organisms.
  • Soil Conservation Technician. Plan and develop coordinated practices for soil erosion control, soil and water conservation, and sound land use.
  • Zoologist. Study the origins, behavior, and life processes of animals and wildlife. May specialize in wildlife research and management, including the collection and analysis of biological data to determine the environmental effects of present and potential use of land and water areas.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Biologist Training

Indiana University-Northwest - Gary, IN

Indiana University-Northwest, 3400 Broadway, Gary, IN 46408-1197. Indiana University-Northwest is a small university located in Gary, Indiana. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,794 students and an admission rate of 80%. Indiana University-Northwest has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated six students in 2008.

Northeastern Illinois University - Chicago, IL

Northeastern Illinois University, 5500 N Saint Louis Ave, Chicago, IL 60625-4699. Northeastern Illinois University is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 11,193 students and an admission rate of 71%. Northeastern Illinois University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences.

Chicago State University - Chicago, IL

Chicago State University, 9501 S. King Drive, Chicago, IL 60628-1598. Chicago State University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,820 students and an admission rate of 61%. Chicago State University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated sixteen and seven students respectively in 2008.

National University of Health Sciences - Lombard, IL

National University of Health Sciences, 200 E Roosevelt Rd, Lombard, IL 60148-4583. National University of Health Sciences is a small university located in Lombard, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 733 students. National University of Health Sciences has a bachelor's degree program in Biomedical Sciences which graduated forty-nine students in 2008.

Roosevelt University - Chicago, IL

Roosevelt University, 430 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60605-1394. Roosevelt University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,708 students and an admission rate of 43%. Roosevelt University has 2 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree.
  • Biotechnology, less than one year and master's degree which graduated four and zero students respectively in 2008.

Trinity International University - Deerfield, IL

Trinity International University, 2065 Half Day Rd, Deerfield, IL 60015-1283. Trinity International University is a small university located in Deerfield, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,654 students and an admission rate of 63%. Trinity International University has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences.

Dominican University - River Forest, IL

Dominican University, 7900 W Division St, River Forest, IL 60305. Dominican University is a small university located in River Forest, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,413 students and an admission rate of 85%. Dominican University has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated two students in 2008.

Saint Xavier University - Chicago, IL

Saint Xavier University, 3700 W 103rd St, Chicago, IL 60655. Saint Xavier University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,307 students and an admission rate of 71%. Saint Xavier University has 2 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree.
  • Botany/Plant Biology, bachelor's degree.

Wheaton College - Wheaton, IL

Wheaton College, 501 College Ave, Wheaton, IL 60187-5593. Wheaton College is a small college located in Wheaton, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,915 students and an admission rate of 62%. Wheaton College has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences.

Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science - North Chicago, IL

Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, 3333 Green Bay Rd, North Chicago, IL 60064. Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science is a small university located in North Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 1,741 students. Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science has 9 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree.
  • Biophysics, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Biochemistry/Biophysics and Molecular Biology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Cell Biology and Anatomy, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Microbiology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Physiology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Pathology/Experimental Pathology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Molecular Pharmacology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other Specialties, master's degree.

Loyola University Chicago - Chicago, IL

Loyola University Chicago, 820 N. Michigan, Chicago, IL 60611-9810. Loyola University Chicago is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 15,670 students and an admission rate of 74%. Loyola University Chicago has 12 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated three and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Biomedical Sciences, master's degree.
  • Biochemistry, master's degree.
  • Molecular Biology, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated seventeen, zero, and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Molecular Biochemistry, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Cell Biology and Anatomy, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Microbiology, master's degree.
  • Immunology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Microbiological Sciences and Immunology, Other Specialties, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Physiology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Pharmacology, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Bioinformatics, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.

Trinity Christian College - Palos Heights, IL

Trinity Christian College, 6601 W College Dr, Palos Heights, IL 60463-0929. Trinity Christian College is a small college located in Palos Heights, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,404 students and an admission rate of 94%. Trinity Christian College has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences.

North Park University - Chicago, IL

North Park University, 3225 W Foster Ave, Chicago, IL 60625-4895. North Park University is a small university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,255 students and an admission rate of 30%. North Park University has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences.

Lake Forest College - Lake Forest, IL

Lake Forest College, 555 N Sheridan Road, Lake Forest, IL 60045-2399. Lake Forest College is a small college located in Lake Forest, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,387 students and an admission rate of 59%. Lake Forest College has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated six students in 2008.

University of Chicago - Chicago, IL

University of Chicago, 5801 S Ellis Ave, Chicago, IL 60637. University of Chicago is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 14,620 students and an admission rate of 28%. University of Chicago has 15 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree which graduated 21 students in 2008.
  • Biophysics, doctor's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.
  • Molecular Biochemistry, doctor's degree which graduated 8 students in 2008.
  • Developmental Biology and Embryology, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated two and six students respectively in 2008.
  • Microbiology, doctor's degree which graduated 5 students in 2008.
  • Immunology, doctor's degree which graduated 3 students in 2008.
  • Genetics, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated one and seven students respectively in 2008.
  • Molecular Genetics, doctor's degree which graduated 5 students in 2008.
  • Human/Medical Genetics, doctor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.
  • Molecular Physiology, doctor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Neurobiology and Neurophysiology, doctor's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.
  • Pathology/Experimental Pathology, master's degree which graduated 3 students in 2008.
  • Oncology and Cancer Biology, doctor's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.
  • Ecology, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated one and six students respectively in 2008.
  • Evolutionary Biology, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated two and three students respectively in 2008.

Lewis University - Romeoville, IL

Lewis University, One University Parkway, Romeoville, IL 60446-2200. Lewis University is a medium sized university located in Romeoville, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,536 students and an admission rate of 71%. Lewis University has 2 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree which graduated 3 students in 2008.
  • Biochemistry, bachelor's degree.

Northwestern University - Evanston, IL

Northwestern University, 633 Clark St, Evanston, IL 60208. Northwestern University is a large university located in Evanston, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 20,128 students and an admission rate of 27%. Northwestern University has 8 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated twelve, zero, and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Biochemistry/Biophysics and Molecular Biology, doctor's degree.
  • Botany/Plant Biology, Other Specialties, master's degree.
  • Cell/Cellular Biology and Anatomical Sciences, Other Specialties, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Neurobiology and Neurophysiology, master's degree.
  • Bioinformatics, master's degree.
  • Biotechnology, master's degree.
  • Ecology, bachelor's degree.

Governors State University - University Park, IL

Governors State University, 1 University Pky, University Park, IL 60466-0975. Governors State University is a medium sized university located in University Park, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 5,457 students. Governors State University has 2 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree.
  • Ecology, master's degree.

Rush University - Chicago, IL

Rush University, 600 S. Paulina St. STE 440, Chicago, IL 60612. Rush University is a small university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 1,764 students. Rush University has 7 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biochemistry, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated zero and three students respectively in 2008.
  • Biophysics, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Anatomy, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated one and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Immunology, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated zero and five students respectively in 2008.
  • Physiology, doctor's degree.
  • Pharmacology, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated one and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Biotechnology, master's degree which graduated 18 students in 2008.

Illinois Institute of Technology - Chicago, IL

Illinois Institute of Technology, 3300 S Federal St, Chicago, IL 60616. Illinois Institute of Technology is a medium sized school located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,404 students and an admission rate of 57%. Illinois Institute of Technology has 3 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated seven, thirty, and two students respectively in 2008.
  • Biochemistry, bachelor's degree which graduated 9 students in 2008.
  • Biochemistry/Biophysics and Molecular Biology, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated fourteen, zero, and three students respectively in 2008.

University of Illinois at Chicago - Chicago, IL

University of Illinois at Chicago, 601 S Morgan, Chicago, IL 60607. University of Illinois at Chicago is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 25,709 students and an admission rate of 60%. University of Illinois at Chicago has 8 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated two, six, and fourteen students respectively in 2008.
  • Biochemistry, bachelor's degree which graduated 37 students in 2008.
  • Biochemistry/Biophysics and Molecular Biology, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated one and three students respectively in 2008.
  • Microbiological Sciences and Immunology, Other Specialties, doctor's degree which graduated 5 students in 2008.
  • Physiology, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated one and six students respectively in 2008.
  • Pharmacology, doctor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.
  • Bioinformatics, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated two and six students respectively in 2008.
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other Specialties, doctor's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.

Elmhurst College - Elmhurst, IL

Elmhurst College, 190 Prospect Ave, Elmhurst, IL 60126-3096. Elmhurst College is a small college located in Elmhurst, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,315 students and an admission rate of 69%. Elmhurst College has 2 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree.
  • Biochemistry, bachelor's degree.

North Central College - Naperville, IL

North Central College, 30 N Brainard St, Naperville, IL 60540. North Central College is a small college located in Naperville, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,726 students and an admission rate of 69%. North Central College has 2 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree.
  • Biochemistry, bachelor's degree.

National-Louis University - Chicago, IL

National-Louis University, 122 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603. National-Louis University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,874 students and an admission rate of 56%. National-Louis University has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated one student in 2008.

Purdue University-Calumet Campus - Hammond, IN

Purdue University-Calumet Campus, 2200 169th St, Hammond, IN 46323-2094. Purdue University-Calumet Campus is a medium sized university located in Hammond, Indiana. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 9,325 students and an admission rate of 74%. Purdue University-Calumet Campus has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated one and ten students respectively in 2008.

Benedictine University - Lisle, IL

Benedictine University, 5700 College Rd, Lisle, IL 60532-0900. Benedictine University is a medium sized university located in Lisle, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,053 students and an admission rate of 80%. Benedictine University has 3 areas of study related to Biologist. They are:

  • Biology/Biological Sciences, bachelor's degree.
  • Biochemistry, bachelor's degree.
  • Molecular Biology, bachelor's degree.

Concordia University - River Forest, IL

Concordia University, 7400 Augusta, River Forest, IL 60305-1499. Concordia University is a small university located in River Forest, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,185 students and an admission rate of 58%. Concordia University has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences.

DePaul University - Chicago, IL

DePaul University, 55 E Jackson, Chicago, IL 60604. DePaul University is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 22,554 students. DePaul University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated sixty-four and four students respectively in 2008.

University of St Francis - Joliet, IL

University of St Francis, 500 N Wilcox St, Joliet, IL 60435-6188. University of St Francis is a small university located in Joliet, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,334 students and an admission rate of 60%. University of St Francis has a bachelor's degree program in Biology/Biological Sciences which graduated one student in 2008.

Midwestern University - Downers Grove, IL

Midwestern University, 555 31st Street, Downers Grove, IL 60515-5514. Midwestern University is a small university located in Downers Grove, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 2,013 students. Midwestern University has a master's degree program in Biomedical Sciences which graduated twenty-one students in 2008.

DeVry University-Illinois - Chicago, IL

DeVry University-Illinois, 3300 N Campbell Ave, Chicago, IL 60618. DeVry University-Illinois is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 19,417 students and an admission rate of 92%. DeVry University-Illinois has a bachelor's degree program in Bioinformatics which graduated one student in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.