According to College Factual, the chemistry major is ranked 32nd most popular out of the 384 college majors. About 25,000 degrees in the physical sciences (chemistry and physics) were given in the 2010-11 academic year of the 1.72 million total. About 25% of chemistry graduates go on to work in a directly related field, and most fall under the private, for-profit industry. Today I will be breaking down the top 5 careers in the chemical industry.
#5 – Chemistry Teacher
The most evident career in the chemical industry, and the educator of all other careers on this list. As you may already know, a chemistry teacher is tasked with creating lesson plans, preparing and delivering lectures, evaluating student performance, maintaining classroom records, but most importantly providing students with knowledge on the subject at hand. Unfortunately, chemistry teachers are the lowest-paid science teachers profiting a mean of $80,450 annually. To become a chemistry teacher, a bachelor’s degree in chemistry is required as well as completion of a teacher’s education program.
#4 – Forensic Scientist
Forensic Science Technicians are a fundamental part of criminal investigations. Forensic scientists analyze the physical evidence found at a crime scene. They are known to examine evidence from various angles to aid law enforcement officials in solving crimes, and frequently exonerating innocent suspects. Some forensic scientists may be involved in forgery detection while others may be examining bodily fluids through a microscope. This job is on the lower end of the pay grade, making $55,360 annually.
#3 – Toxicologist
A toxicologist is very similar to a forensic scientist. Toxicologists use scientific and analytical techniques to identify toxins such as chemicals, biological substances, and radiation. They then asses the dangers and potential risks posed by them. A fundamental aspect to a toxicologist’s job is to research the potential harm caused by chemicals to help establish regulations and protect the general public. Toxicologists with masters degrees averages just over $50,000 however those with doctorates earned closer to $100,000 a year.
#2 – Chemical Engineer
A chemical engineer is tasked with design and developing a chemical manufacturing process. They apply the principles of chemistry, biology, physics, and math to fix problems that involve the production and use of fuel, drugs, food, and chemicals. They work in manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, design and construction, and more. An important factor to consider about this job is that it can be potentially dangerous. One could be exposed to new chemicals and not yet specified toxicity. The chemical engineers salary begins at $97,360 per year.
#1 – Pharmacologist
Pharmacology is the specific science pertaining to the effects of drugs on the body. They aim to understand how medicines and other drugs work so they can be implemented effectively and safely. Pharmacologists work as part of a research team that is responsible for screening compounds, developing drugs and undertaking controlled experiments. The average annual salary for pharmacologists is $114,430.