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What can I do with a major in Chemistry?


The information below describes typical occupations and employers associated with this major. Understand that some of the options listed below may require additional training. Moreover, you are not limited to these options alone when choosing a possible career path.

Description of Chemistry

Chemistry majors develop skills that may lead to a wide variety of occupational tracks. Trained to think both analytically and creatively, chemists solve practical as well as research problems – skills that are readily transferable to many careers. Many chemistry majors go on to law, medical, business, or graduate schools, but they are prepared for careers in such diverse settings as research, education and government, and industry. Nearly 70 percent of chemists have jobs in the industrial sector. Others work in academia, for nonprofit organizations, and for government agencies. Almost half of the chemists work with research. Often chemists combine teaching and research, administrative and production work. Chemists find job opportunities in pharmaceutical and industrial sales, inspection and marketing analysis. Chemistry students with a bachelor′s degree can find employment with the federal government in quality control and analytical positions, research, and the development of fuels and medicines. (Rhodes’ Chemistry Department Website)

Possible Job Titles of Chemistry Graduates

(*Jobs secured as reported by Rhodes Career Services post-graduate survey)
Agricultural Scientist
Cereal Chemist
Associate Research Scientist
Chemical Manufacturer
College Professor
Editorial Assistant*
Environmental Consultant
Food Chemist
Environmental Chemist
FDA Inspector
Forensic Scientist
Industrial Chemist
Lab Assistant*
Lab Technician*
Inorganic Chemist
Research Analyst*
Medical Doctor*
Pharmaceutical Sales Rep.
PD Technician*
Pfizer Central Researcher
Pharmacy Technician
Quality Control Chemist*
Organic Chemist
Sales Associate
Polymer Chemist
Technical Sales Person
Technical Writer
Research Technologist*
Research Engineer
Textile Chemist
Water Chemist

Possible Employers and Employment Settings for Chemistry Graduates

(*Jobs secured as reported by Rhodes Career Services post-graduate survey)

A & L Analytical Lab*
Andersen Consulting
Buckeye Technologies*
Chemical Industry
Chemical Manufacturers
Buckman Laboratories
Consulting Firms
Cosmetics Industry
Defense Industry
Drug Industry
Commercial Appeal*
Drug Stores
Educational Institutions
Electronics Industry
Engineering Firms
Environmental Protection Agency
Federal, State and Local Government
Food Processors 
Glass Industry
Health Care Facilities/Hospitals*
Hickson Corporation
Industrial Production & Inspection
Industry Glass
Manufacturing Firms
Medical Supply Companies
Partnership for Prevention*
Packaging Industry
Paint Industry
Tyson Foods
Pfizer Central Research
Pharmaceutical Companies
Petroleum Industry
Phillip Morris Corporation
Production Facilities
Peace Corps*
Non-Profit Organizations
Pyrol Industries*
Sandia National Laboratory
Savannah Laboratories
Scientific Journals
Springborn Testing & Research
Shire Laboratories*
Swiss Center for Science & Research
Technical Consulting Firms
Teach for America*
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital*
Testing Labs
Textiles Industries

Skill Sets and Interests Associated with Chemistry Majors

  • Maintain accuracy while applying knowledge creatively
  • Perceiving patterns/structures
  • Reviewing relevant data      
  • Attitude conducive to precision and accuracy
  • Organizing and reporting data

Rhodes Campus Contacts Associated with Chemistry

Career Services           

Chemistry Dept.

Top Rhodes Career Library Resources for Chemistry Majors

  • Great Jobs for Chemistry Majors by Mark Rowh
  • Careers with the Pharmaceutical Industry edited by Peter D. Stonier
  • Opportunities in Forensic Science Careers by Blythe Camenson
  • Peterson’s Job Opportunities: Health and Science
  • The Yale Guide to Careers in Medicine & the Health Professions

Additional Resources for Chemistry Majors

ACS Publications
American Association for the Advancement of Science
Journal of Chemical Education
American Chemical Society Job Bank