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Chemistry Student

What Can I Do With This Major?

Chemistry is a practical field with a broad range of career possibilities. Salaries depend on degree earned and level and type of experience.

Within 2-4 years of graduating with a BS or BA degree, the median salary for chemists is $42,000, with the lowest and highest 10% earning $31,000 and $53,000 respectively. At the other extreme, within 25-30 years of obtaining a PhD, the median chemist's salary is $104,000, with the lowest and highest 10% earning $67,000 and $170,000 respectively.

While chemists with different degrees may work on the same projects together, a higher degree (PhD vs. MS vs. BA) allows greater autonomy & responsibility. Unemployment rates in chemistry are typically below 2%.

Core Disciplines

Analytical: emphasis is on determining chemical composition of samples.

Biochemistry: emphasis is on characterizing biomolecules (e.g. proteins, nucleic acids, carbohydrates) and determining their biological function.

Inorganic: emphasis is on synthesis, reactivity and analysis of materials in which elements other than carbon play the key roles.

Organic: emphasis is on structure, properties, and reactivity of carbon-based molecules.

Physical: emphasis is on the mathematical basis for chemical phenomena.

Careers Related to Chemistry

• Pharmacist Pharmacologist
• Physician Dentist
• Veterinarian Researcher
• Educator Criminologist
• Dietician Geneticist
• Chemical Engineer Industrial Hygienist
• Journal Editor Book Publisher
• Scientific Consultant Film Consultant
• Neuroscientist Aesthetician Visual
• Communications Ophthalmologist
• Pathologist Inventor
• Investment Banker Nutritionist
• Food and Drug Inspector Food and Drug Analyst
• Toxicologist Patent Examiner Ceramic
• Engineer Lawyer
• Museum Curator Art Conservationist
• Government Advisor Pyrotechnician
• Librarian Federal Agent

Fields Related to Chemistry

• Aerospace Food
• Pharmaceuticals Textile and Fashion
• Agricultural Forensics
• Cosmetic Environmental Concerns
• Energy Alternative Fuels
• Biotechnology Advertising
• Public Health Information Technology 

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What Can I Do With This Major