Degree in Chemistry
Students who graduate with a degree in chemistry possess the skills necessary to begin a career in a diverse number of fields, while earning considerably more than students who graduate with a liberal arts degree. Chemistry plays a crucial role in most every scientific field, which is why most chemists refer to chemistry as the “central science.” Because chemistry plays such an important role in so many branches of science, a degree in chemistry can open the doors in the following fields:
- Industrial Chemistry
- Academic Careers
- Government Careers
- Forensic Chemistry
- Medical Industry
- Chemical Information and Intellectual Property
Fields in Industry that use Degrees in Chemistry
Industrial research and development for a major chemical company such as Dow or Monsanto requires skilled chemists to create, design, and test new products before they hit the market. As a research chemist, a graduate with a degree in chemistry could work to develop new or improve existing technologies for the company in which they work. While PhD scientists will conduct most of the research, a role does exist for employees with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in chemistry that can work as technicians under direct supervision from the lead scientist. Large chemical companies also tend to fill sales and marketing positions with individuals with an educational background that allows them to sell their product from a position of knowledge.
Academic Careers that use a Degree in Chemistry
While some students may disagree, teachers at the high school, community college and university level don’t get randomly assigned which subjects they teach. Teachers at the collegiate level need to possess at least a master’s degree to teach in their chosen subject, and more high schools are demanding at least a bachelor’s degree in a related field to teach science. A teaching position is a perfect way for graduates who are passionate about chemistry to encourage and excite a whole new generation of students about the elegant beauty of science.
Government Careers that use a Degree in Chemistry
U.S. regulatory agencies such as the EPA, FDA, ATF and FBI all have need for the use of skilled technicians who can perform research and analytical services. The U.S. government also operates several national research labs that employ individuals who possess B.S., M.S. and PhD degrees in chemistry to conduct research in multiple fields. Forensic science, a stable of most crimes labs, needs individuals who possess a background in biochemistry and analytical chemistry to help run the labs.
Greater Earning Potential for Individuals with a Degree in Chemistry
In a research studied conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers concluded that physical science graduates leave school equipped with the skills needed to find employment in a wide variety of high paying jobs. Studies show that an individual with a degree in chemistry or physics will earn an average of 30 percent more in their lifetime than someone without a degree, and at least 12 percent more than graduates in such liberal arts fields as psychology, English and history.