Careers in Chemistry & Biochemistry
The department offers several degree programs, all of which can be used to pursue different career options. A degree in chemistry or biochemistry is very versatile and can be used to pursue a variety of professional choices.
The American Chemical Society (ACS) maintains an outstanding College-to-Career webpage that describes the areas of chemistry, chemistry careers, salaries in chemistry, and career preparation tips.
A degree in chemistry is a gateway to many traditional careers as well as to careers in nontraditional and interdisciplinary fields.
The employment outlook for graduates with degrees in chemical sciences is markedly better than it is in other fields. According to figures published by the American Chemical Society, salaries for entry-level chemistry positions are approximately $72,000. The latest statistics show that of chemists in the domestic workforce, only 3 percent were unemployed.
Biochemistry and chemistry degrees are both highly desirable for those interested in becoming physicians or dentists. The acceptance rate to professional schools for individuals with these degrees is quite high. Our students continue to be accepted in medical, dental and pharmacy schools all over the country.
Careers in research have always been a primary career option for chemists and biochemists. Positions in the research industry need people with bachelor’s, master’s and Ph.D. degrees. People in research seek to solve new problems or improve product design. Our bachelor of science degrees prepare students extremely well for post-baccalaureate education in chemistry, biochemistry and molecular biology. All Chemistry and Biochemistry majors get independent research experience as part of their degree program!
Chemists are involved in testing, remediation, emission control, chemical safety, waste management, and work in governmental regulatory agencies. Students interested in this option should also consider the Environmental Studies minor and/or coordinate major.
A degree in chemistry can be used to pursue careers working with law enforcement agencies. Chemists are used in the analysis of crime scene data. Scientific data is increasingly important to the outcome of trials. Chemists play a major role in this work. Students interested in this career path may also consider minoring in Forensics and/or Criminal Justice.
Chemists can pursue careers in law, and a degree in chemistry is well-suited for legal studies. Chemists that go on to law school are especially well-suited for specialization in patent or environmental law and chemical liability. The increasing importance of scientific evidence in legal cases is increasing the demand for lawyers with technical knowledge.
Computational Drug Design
The use of computers in the rational design of new drugs is at the forefront of modern drug discovery. Chemists combine traditional synthetic approaches with sophisticated graphic molecular modeling and computer-driven techniques to develop new lead compounds. All chemical and pharmaceutical companies have needs for individuals trained in this field.
A chemistry degree is very useful and well-suited for management in scientific industry. Our graduates have pursued M.B.A.s to lead to careers in industries as diverse as environmental waste management and the auto industry. With appropriate selection of electives, the bachelor of arts program would permit a student to complete an MBA with an additional year of study at Niagara University.
All pharmaceutical companies require individuals who are trained in science to be able to sell their products to pharmacists and physicians. Chemists and biochemists are especially well-suited to these highly desirable positions.