Work in Progress: Using Resume Reviews to Explore Skill Sets Valued in Biomedical Engineers by Recruiters in Industry, Healthcare, and Academia

Annie Wang, Cassandra Jamison, Jan Stegemann, Aileen Huang-Saad

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


From its foundation, the field of biomedical engineering (BME) has strived to solve interdisciplinary problems involving engineering, biology, and healthcare, which has resulted in a field that is diverse in both subject matter and career opportunities. However, the wide range of subjects under the umbrella of BME has led to criticism of BME curricula for being too broad without providing enough depth in content to prepare students to be competitive against other engineering students in the job market. Furthermore, BME graduates receive lower starting salaries and have fewer discipline-specific job opportunities than other engineering discipline degree holders [1]. Thus, there have been many efforts to identify and understand skills and experiences that are of value to BME recruiters. This work in progress study seeks to explore what recruiters in industry, healthcare, and academia are looking for in BME graduates. The work is guided by the following research questions: What qualities, skills, and experiences are recruiters looking for in potential BME hires? How can they be represented on resumes of BME undergraduates? We will explore these questions by analyzing resumes designed to reflect the specific qualities desired by BME recruiters in different fields (i.e., healthcare, academia, industry). The creation of these designed resumes (DRs) was based on content in resumes collected from fourth year BME students at a large R1, public university. Thus, the DRs reflected the experiences and skills of typical undergraduate BME graduates. DRs were also based on previously published rubrics used to evaluate the strength of resumes based on three distinct career pathways in BME: academia, industry, healthcare [2]. Using these rubrics as a guide, the DRs vary in strength and alignment with the three different career pathways. DRs are currently being distributed to recruiters along with a survey, which asks respondents to rank four DRs according to strength and identify the applicants that they would offer an interview to. This survey also seeks to capture qualitative data about what is important to recruiters, including the skills and experiences that the evaluators deem most impactful and the reasoning for their resume rankings and interview offer decisions. The work presented in this paper will discuss the process of creating the DRs based on the rubrics, and the current response rates of the survey at the time of paper submission. In our future work, we plan to perform a comparison of our expected rankings of the resumes from the recruiters based on the rubrics from [2] to the collected survey responses. By comparing recruiters' evaluation of the student resumes, both quantitatively and qualitatively, to the scores and strength of the resumes according to the previously established rubrics [2], we seek to understand whether our current understandings of BME skillsets align with the qualities that recruiters deem to be valuable in student resumes. The results from this study can help undergraduate BME programs and students understand what BME recruiters value for employment in healthcare, industry, and academia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - Aug 23 2022
Externally publishedYes
Event129th ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: Excellence Through Diversity, ASEE 2022 - Minneapolis, United States
Duration: Jun 26 2022Jun 29 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Work in Progress: Using Resume Reviews to Explore Skill Sets Valued in Biomedical Engineers by Recruiters in Industry, Healthcare, and Academia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this