Navigating careers and higher education amidst Covid-19

The pandemic has had rippling effects on jobs in most sectors from pay cuts, job losses to an increased demand for professionals engaged in Research & Development to tackle Covid-19, qualified laboratory staff for PCR testing as well as medical staff.Covid-19 has also shaken the education sector with lectures and in some cases laboratory sessions shifting to online platforms. If you have any questions as to how the pandemic might impact you or if you have any general questions in pursuing higher education or a career in a scientific field e-mail us at editor@scienceabode.com

I am currently pursuing a degree in microbiology and due to graduate next year, how will the current pandemic effect my job opportunities?

Dear Nadia

With reference to top Science Careers job sites, this year academic job openings at U.S. institutions are down 70% compared with last year, In US, 173 jobs were posted between July and September this year, compared with 571 during the same period last year, percentage dropped 69%. Globally, there will be severe drop in new recruitment across the academia and industry in 2021.

Employees who are currently working at Faculties may try to secure their positions. As new recruitments have already dropped, current postdocs are trying to stay longer in their positions. This will affect starting new jobs for PhD gradates. This may lead to finding jobs in nonacademic areas. As graduates will pass out freshly from the intakes before 2019 they may have to find new positions with difficulties and low wages. Fresh graduates need to compete with experienced persons for new openings. However, this will be temporary as vaccines and new medications arrive possibly in mid 2021, which might change the trends and gradually become normalized in 2022. However, recovery might take at least three to four years.

The questions are answered by Dr. Thusitha Gajanayake who has years of experience in research and the education sector. Dr. Gajanayake received his Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine (BVSc) degree at the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka, and a Master of Science (MSc) degree in Biochemistry at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland followed by a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Biology from the University of Bern, Switzerland. He was also the recipient of the 2014 Swiss Transplant Research Award for Excellence in Transplantation and has many research publications.


Dr. Thusitha Gajanayake

  • BVSc, 2000
  • MSc (Fribourg), 2005
  • PhD (Bern), 2009
  • Teacher Reparation Program, 2002
  • Cert. Secondary Learning – Open University, Milton Keynes, UK in 2018C

Catch Dr. Thusitha Gajanayake   at the Little Scientist Program held on Sundays 9:00 AM  – 4:00 Pm for 11 to 16 year old’s.


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Disclaimer: The answers provided on this site are based on contemporary information and trends in the relevant industries, sciencabode.com or its experts cannot guarantee any future prospects in the education sector or for careers.