FAQ

figuring out berkeley, bioengineering, and bmes might be tough.
don’t worry! here are some frequently asked questions we get and our answers to them.

membership

We don’t require any major for membership; we welcome everyone to BMES. Similarly, we don’t require any experience or specific skills for membership. Many of our members joined with little exposure to bioengineering directly. However, some expertise is certainly helpful in some cases, and most of our members are traditionally Bioengineering majors. Generally, all that we ask that you come with a passion or interest in bioengineering, a good attitude, and a willingness to learn!

The committee application to join our student organization as a committee member will be opening soon for the 2020-21 school year! General members attend general meetings (GMs), come out to our events, and engage with other members and officers to support the club. The general member application is live now – see our Get Involved page for more details.

However, joining a committee is by far the best way to get involved! Even if you’re not interested in becoming a member, many of our events throughout the year are open to the general student population.

Our Get Involved page has additional resources, and our calendar website has information for upcoming events, like general meetings. If you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Yes! The committees that allow doubling up with committees are Outreach & BioE Banquet.

Applications are only open in the fall. While exceptions can be made at times, we cannot guarantee that you’ll be able to join a committee in the spring. Therefore, we strongly recommend and encourage you to submit a committee application in the fall if you’re interested!

general

We host professional development events, workshops, formal dinners, panels, and everything in between! Many of these events are open to the general public. We also spend time hanging out as a club playing games, traveling, volunteering, or just eating food together. Our goal is to ensure our club members’ success in the world of bioengineering and/or biotechnology; this could manifest in a research position, an internship, an eventual job offer, or even a new best friend! Our five distinct committees help members to find their own idea of success, whatever that might look like to them.

BMES is not centered around hands-on projects related to bioengineering or biotechnology. Rather, we focus on building a bioengineering community, networking, and educating our members to ready them for success in bioengineering or biotechnology. That being said, our club’s committees, such as Design Committee, can certainly provide guidance and connections to mentors for your personal projects or research interests.

BMES members are either committee members or general members. Committee members work to organize, facilitate, and attend events we host together. They gain valuable experience in event planning, and develop professional, academic, and social skills. Committee members also collaborate intimately with a smaller group of BMES members, building close friendships. General members are normally not directly involved in event planning, but they are free to attend, learn, and benefit from any of our events. Additionally, general members are free to support the club in any other way they see fit.

Like a lot of things in life, the more you put in, the more you also get out. In the context of BMES, we find that the members who dedicate time and effort above the minimum often benefit the most from the club. That being said, committee members are generally expected to commit 3 hours per week (this includes committee meeting time and work outside of committee meetings).

Usually, the committee(s) you are accepted into will be your committee(s) for the academic year. Please talk to the officers if you wish to switch your committee due to unforeseeable circumstances.

life as a bioengineer

Classes in the Bioengineering department are not necessarily easy or incredibly hard. As a member of BMES you’ll have access to an extensive network of fellow members who have previously taken the class – it always helps to have a friend or study group!.Additionally, our club provides a variety of workshops, training, and other resources to help you with your academics.

Be whatever concentration you’d like to be! Many bioengineers don’t decide on a concentration until the end of sophomore year, and it’s possible to change concentrations. As a Bioengineering major, you aren’t required to take classes specifically inside your concentration. In fact, we encourage you to explore any of your interests in our fascinating field that we share. Concentrations exist to ensure that you have appropriate depth of knowledge in a specific area of bioengineering, but they are certainly helpful! If you want to learn more about what each concentration does, please visit the Berkeley Bioengineering website for a more detailed overview.