Getting a CRA position right out of college

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Lauren in Durham, North Carolina

80 months ago

Is it realistic to obtain a CRA position with only a B.S in Biology? I just graduated, and one of my contacts is pushing me to submit my resume for this position. Is clinical experience really essential?

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Ashley in Fayetteville, North Carolina

80 months ago

I was wondering the same thing....

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David in Los Angeles, California

80 months ago

I asked this question here at Indeed a while ago. Didn't get an answer. I also only have a B.S. in Biology and I really don't plan on getting any higher degrees unless it's necessary. However, every CRA I job listing I've looked at said that a Bachelor's degree is required, but none of them say anything about a Master's or PhD requirement or recommendation. The higher-level CRA II and CRA III/Senior CRA positions might recommend or require higher-level degrees, but I haven't paid any attention to those. The Kriger online training program I am taking states that a Bachelor's degree in a life science is the educational requirement (Biology, Pharmacology, Physiology, Immunology, Genetics, etc.). The experience requirement is really what will weed out everybody though.

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Nina in Hayward, California

80 months ago

I think so, if you have some clinical experience.

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Jess in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

80 months ago

I did get a CRA position right out of college and I am in my first year of monitoring now. I really enjoy it, but for the exchange of a job for little clinical experience, I did have to take some cuts. I am working for a smaller CRO that offers a much smaller salary than other CRA positions. I had to move out of state for this job, as they do not allow new CRA's to be home-based. For me, it is worth the sacrifice of a year or two at this company to later land a better paying job with another company in the future. The larger companies really won't look at your resume without some experience. My best recommendation is to gain knowledge about IRB's and ICH guidelines. In school, I was able to work with a doctor of philosophy that was on an IRB. Demonstrating knowledge about the industry and FDA guidelines is key for landing that first position.

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EW in Denton, Texas

73 months ago

"Only a BS in Biology degree"? What do you mean by only? It is VERY rare to get a CRA position right out of college; I mean let's be real, people with a great amount of clinical reserach experience struggle. Congrats to you though, Jess.

I would say get your foot in the door at a CRO-data management, safety, regulatory, etc. If you work with monitors (like I did) build a relationship with them and ASK questions--all were very informative! From there, that is where you can "sell" yourself (or at least be in a better position) to apply for a CRA postion.

I know people with a BS in non-scientific areas who are CRAs I-III, etc; so its doable. All I can tell you is be persistent, never give up and don't indulge in negativity. Many people told me I would not be where I am today (just landed a CRA postion w/ "only" a BS in Biology). Education is good for getting in as many require at least a BS, but experience and knowledge will take you to your heights. Keep your heads up and I hope this helps, some.

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AS in Groton, Connecticut

73 months ago

Hi, I have a degree in Biology. I was recruited to do data management, but now I'm looking to get into CRA position. I've found that Data Mgt. positions are much easier to start out with in the pharmaceutical field with just a degree. Most CRA positions want experience, not to train from the ground up. I suggest maybe looking into data management with a company that also hires CRA's, and then doing a lateral move. Ex: Kendle is a company that does this. Look for thier clinical data associate position, which is entry-level.

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Jackie in New Brunswick, New Jersey

73 months ago

Hey guys i am currently an intern at American Scitech i have my bs in biology also and couldn't find anything in clinical no even data management without experience. The program trains you from the ground up. Its not easy but what is. If you are looking to break into being a CRA its the only way to go to get training and experience. After my internship I think I am going to stay on at American Scitech International. well anywayz good luck

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sam in Mississauga, Ontario

73 months ago

Jackie in New Brunswick, New Jersey said: Hey guys i am currently an intern at American Scitech i have my bs in biology also and couldn't find anything in clinical no even data management without experience. The program trains you from the ground up. Its not easy but what is. If you are looking to break into being a CRA its the only way to go to get training and experience. After my internship I think I am going to stay on at American Scitech International. well anywayz good luck

hai jackie
I am interested in taking the cra course at American Scitech. But I am hearing so many things in this forum saying American Scitech is a fraud. plz let me how far it is correct. plz let me know to make a decission.
thanks
sam

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hessen_2000 in Fort Worth, Texas

72 months ago

I know people who don't have a degree and are CRAs, I know PHDs, MDs, RNs and people with a degree in Math that are CRAs. It doesn't really matter, if you want it bad enough, you can get in. Everyone, even the MDs, PHDs will start out as a CRA I. You will need to get experience if you want to be a III or SR. Try to have a CRA submit your resume, that's your best chance.

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hemapatel in Piscataway, New Jersey

66 months ago

Jackie in New Brunswick, New Jersey said: Hey guys i am currently an intern at American Scitech i have my bs in biology also and couldn't find anything in clinical no even data management without experience. The program trains you from the ground up. Its not easy but what is. If you are looking to break into being a CRA its the only way to go to get training and experience. After my internship I think I am going to stay on at American Scitech International. well anywayz good luck

Hey Jackie,

Yea, I also am considering American Scitech, but keep hearing that is a scam all over these boards. Can you let me know how it is going there, I can be reached at hpatel1211@gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from you.

Thanks

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Darshan in New York, New York

65 months ago

hemapatel in Piscataway, New Jersey said: Hey Jackie,

Yea, I also am considering American Scitech, but keep hearing that is a scam all over these boards. Can you let me know how it is going there, I can be reached at hpatel1211@gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from you.

Thanks

actually it is not a bad place. I'm a pharmacy student from Surat and i am going to that school right now. I am liking it dosen't mean you will , but i have also been at the same place you are now. I was looking for job directly and was sitting for 4 months at home. atleast they will let me utilize my OPT.

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Darshan in New York, New York

65 months ago

They are doing training and i have been there and spoken to people who are doing the work, in internship term. I'm working in store and you cannot meet demand for all of the customers. It's good school and they have all certification because i check that 1st.

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kunal_shah2411@yahoo.com in Bronx, New York

65 months ago

Darshan in New York, New York said: They are doing training and i have been there and spoken to people who are doing the work, in internship term. I'm working in store and you cannot meet demand for all of the customers. It's good school and they have all certification because i check that 1st.

hey darshan,

Can we communicate via email regarding american sci tech.my email is kunal_shah2411@yahoo.com

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hitchens2003@aol.com in Germantown, Maryland

64 months ago

I've been reading this board for about 5 minutes and I decided to post my "two cents". First of all, I am currently working for a Biotech in Maryland. My current duty title is Clinical Trials Associate. This position is basically an unofficial CRA training program within the company. The purpose of this position is to provide administrative support for what ever team you are assigned to. In the case, I am assigned to the Oncology team. Within the first 30 days of being in this position I learned the following CRA must knows: IRB, FDA 1572, Protocols, Case Report Form, Protocol Violations, Financial Disclosures, GCP, and much more. The key thing with the position is that I work extremely close with the CRAs, Trial Manager, Project Manager, and in some cases the CRO. Now that I have proven myself as a reliable go getter and team player... I am scheduled to do my first monitoring visit on May 21st to U of Penn. This is key for me in becoming a CRA. Most companies require 2 years of monitoring experience and 1 year of clinical operation experience. According to my "goal sheet", I will be a CRA by December 2009. Not bad for a guy that doesn't have a college degree ( I will graduate in December with a degree in Health Care Management).
I am taking the same path that several of our CRAs have taken within the company. You MUST get your foot in the door and network, network, network. Once the directors and managers place trust in you... the sky is the limit in this industry. Oh yeah, one last tid-bit. July 7th will make one year for me working as a CTA and the position pays a little over $51K.

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hitchens2003@aol.com in Germantown, Maryland

64 months ago

I've been reading this board for about 5 minutes and I decided to post my "two cents". First of all, I am currently working for a Biotech in Maryland. My current duty title is Clinical Trials Associate. I took this position after serving 9 years in the army as a medical specialist. This position is basically an unofficial CRA training program within the company. The purpose of this position is to provide administrative support for what ever team you are assigned to. In the case, I am assigned to the Oncology team. Within the first 30 days of being in this position I learned the following CRA must knows: IRB, FDA 1572, Protocols, Case Report Form, Protocol Violations, Financial Disclosures, GCP, and much more. The key thing with the position is that I work extremely close with the CRAs, Trial Manager, Project Manager, and in some cases the CRO. Now that I have proven myself as a reliable go getter and team player... I am scheduled to do my first monitoring visit on May 21st to U of Penn. This is key for me in becoming a CRA. Most companies require 2 years of monitoring experience and 1 year of clinical operation experience. According to my "goal sheet", I will be a CRA by December 2009. Not bad for a guy that doesn't have a college degree ( I will graduate in December with a degree in Health Care Management).
I am taking the same path that several of our CRAs have taken within the company. You MUST get your foot in the door and network, network, network. Once the directors and managers place trust in you... the sky is the limit in this industry. Oh yeah, one last tid-bit. July 7th will make one year for me working as a CTA and the position pays a little over $51K.

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Darshan in New York, New York

64 months ago

kunal_shah2411@yahoo.com in Bronx, New York said: hey darshan,

Can we communicate via email regarding american sci tech.my email is kunal_shah2411@yahoo.com

i have sent you the email

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Darshan in New York, New York

64 months ago

Darshan in New York, New York said: i have sent you the email

best thing to do in your case is to just go there and find out.

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blueblack in Crosswicks, New Jersey

64 months ago

Darshan in New York, New York said: best thing to do in your case is to just go there and find out.

Hi Darshan did you find out about american scitech? Do they offer paid internships to all who train there or only to some ?

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darshan in New York, New York

64 months ago

blueblack in Crosswicks, New Jersey said: Hi Darshan did you find out about american scitech? Do they offer paid internships to all who train there or only to some ?

they are only offering the paid internship to people who can score 85% minimum. they are giving the internship and it is paid. i had that doubt also, so i went on weekday and asked to speak to intern.

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blueblack in Crosswicks, New Jersey

64 months ago

So if the student did not score 85% then they will not get the internship, if so what is the use of the course, the student does not get the experience needed to land a job in the CRA field, for which he/she is attendig the course in the first place.

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Cra_Zy in New york, New York

64 months ago

Don't waste your money and time trusting these fake training institutes which promise to offer paid internship. If you want to be a trainee CRA then directly approach some good companies through Medzilla.com site.

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Darshan in New York, New York

64 months ago

blueblack in Crosswicks, New Jersey said: So if the student did not score 85% then they will not get the internship, if so what is the use of the course, the student does not get the experience needed to land a job in the CRA field, for which he/she is attendig the course in the first place.

from what i see, it's okay. They cant hire the dumb ones wanting to be CRA. if they take 4,500 and give you 30,000 job it dosent' make sense. all the students are doing very hard job to get in. and so far it's working out. and it's better you talk to someone over there i can give you number i dont want to say anything more.

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begitu_indah@hotmail.com in Richmond, Virginia

64 months ago

Darshan in New York, New York said: They are doing training and i have been there and spoken to people who are doing the work, in internship term. I'm working in store and you cannot meet demand for all of the customers. It's good school and they have all certification because i check that 1st.

Hey Darshan, can you tell me more on how they will let you use your OPT? You cn respond to me using my email (username)..... Thanks

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doctorxg

62 months ago

Hi hitchens2003,
I just read your post and very encouraging. I had CRA with just 6 month training experience and my 4 yrs undergraduate studies. Do you think I have a chance with the company you work for now. I don`t ming starting with them as CTA. Can talk via email if you don`t mind!
Take care.

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Lookintob CRA in Denver, Colorado

59 months ago

Does anyone know the best way to get a CRA job or companies that are hiring. I have a BS degree and 10 years in research, 3 in clinical setting but want to move into a CRA position, however getting my foot in the door seems impossible.

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Parul in Hillsborough, New Jersey

43 months ago

I have Masters in Biomedical Science with a 5 years preclinical research experience in pharmaceutical background. Really interested into moving into CRA. Please suggest as unable to find the correct route. Should I get a CRA certificate and then apply...It is hard to get even a entry level position..Please suggest...

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Massa in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

43 months ago

Parul in Hillsborough, New Jersey said: I have Masters in Biomedical Science with a 5 years preclinical research experience in pharmaceutical background. Really interested into moving into CRA. Please suggest as unable to find the correct route. Should I get a CRA certificate and then apply...It is hard to get even a entry level position..Please suggest...

A CRA certificate is not the way to get the experience CROs want.

An entry-level CRA position is not entry-level to the industry. In order to be considered for CRA jobs, you need at least 2-3 years as a CRC or CTA. However, since you have all the preclinical experience, you may be able to get in another way (of course expecting to jump right up to CRA without any clinical experience is unrealistic, but you have other transferrable skills).

I would suggest applying for positions in regulatory affairs, protocol writing, clinical science. Getting a CRA job without being a CRC , CTA or project assistant first is not realistic- CRA is not entry-level.

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Shijun Yang in Metuchen, New Jersey

30 months ago

Hi,
My name is shijun yang.
You have very good experience about this intership.
Would like to tell me how to contact American Scitech. Or would you like to pass my resume for them.

Thank you very much!

Jackie in New Brunswick, New Jersey said: Hey guys i am currently an intern at American Scitech i have my bs in biology also and couldn't find anything in clinical no even data management without experience. The program trains you from the ground up. Its not easy but what is. If you are looking to break into being a CRA its the only way to go to get training and experience. After my internship I think I am going to stay on at American Scitech International. well anywayz good luck

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