Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/1/2007
Publication Date: 12/4/2007
Citation: Frye, J.G. 2007. Research careers for microbiologists in the USDA Agricultural Research Service. University of Georgia Department of Microbioloby Career Panel. December 04, 2007. Athens, Georgia.
Technical Abstract: The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) employees microbiologists in a wide variety of diverse positions. This includes work involving animal health, infectious diseases and food safety. Various agencies within the USDA are responsible for monitoring and regulating food safety and animal health. These include the Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). Most research is performed by (ARS). Scientists at the ARS investigate a range of issues affecting agriculture, food production and food safety. Microbiologists investigate topics include bacteriological food safety, pathogen detection, infectious diseases of animals and food borne zoonotic infections. They also study emerging problems that endanger animal and human health such as the spread of antimicrobial resistance in bacteria. Many training and employment opportunities are available for graduates with degrees in microbiology. Training programs include the Student Career Experience Program (SCEP), Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP) and postdoctoral fellowships. Permanent positions within the agency include Biological Science Technicians, Support Scientists, Senior Scientists, Research Leaders, administrators and National Program Staff. As baby-boomers retire, opportunities with USDA, ARS will could increase.