Chemistry Department

What Kind of Jobs Can a Chemist Do?

The truth is, it's a jungle out there. Times are currently tough for employment in any field, but indications are that opportunities are improving in chemistry.

Regardless of what the economic climate is, a good student with a thorough chemistry education is prepared for challenges because he or she can solve problems.

According to the American Chemical Society, 60% of chemists work in industry, 24% in academic institutions, 9% in government jobs, and the remainder are in non-traditional careers. Nearly 50% of all chemists do research, yet often they spend a considerable amount of their time outside of a laboratory; 10% are involved in chemical production.

Industrial chemists can work in research on or production of polymers, biotechnology, electronics, points, pharmaceuticals, foods, flavors, fragrances, detergents, and cosmetics, as well as bulk chemicals. Government employees either do research in national laboratories, or work in the forensic, environmental, analytical, patent, geochemical, agricultural, medicinal, materials, or scientific writing areas

In the last five years, chemistry graduates from our department have been employed in government laboratories (forensic, environmental, analytical,water treatment) or industry (research technician, sales), and several have gone on to graduate schools in medicine, chemistry, biochemistry and pharmacology.

See Careers in Chemistry for more information.