What Types of Jobs are Available with a Master’s in Chemistry?

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Updated August 4, 2020

If you're considering continuing your education with a Master's in Chemistry, your first priority is probably to learn about the types of jobs you may find with such credentials. Chemistry is a broad field in which a number of concentrations or areas of specialization can be pursued. Some professionals may look at the in-depth structure and properties of different substances, then perform tests in order to determine how they interact. Some may opt to pursue a more research-oriented focus to add to the current knowledge base and theoretical framework of the field. Still others may go into the industrial side of chemistry, creating new products or materials. Here are some of the more common careers available to those who study chemistry at the Master's level.

Production Chemist

Places of employment for production chemists include industrial production facilities such as chemical plants and refineries. These chemistry experts use their knowledge to improve existing manufacturing processes or to create new ones. They may manage production, help to design plant equipment and refine processes or monitor quality control. They often work in conjunction with chemical engineers.

Medical Chemist

It is the job of a medical chemist to study various chemical compounds used in pharmaceutical drugs. It's not unusual for these chemists to collaborate with other types of scientists in the developmental and testing of new medicines. This process is often referred to as "drug discovery." Some medical chemists hold a Master's in Chemistry, but there are also many with a doctoral degree working in these jobs.

Research Chemist

Research chemists can tackle a wide spectrum of areas related to chemistry. They may use their expertise to create improvements to currently used processes or products. They are also in a position to utilize their research in the development of new technologies. Research chemists work in laboratories, studying chemical properties and structures, as well as performing work to yield chemical reactions. When they are not busy with hands-on work in the lab, these professionals may be utilizing computer software programs to analyze data and to create reports. Becoming a research chemist requires, at minimum, a Master's degree.

Community College Chemistry Instructor

While most four-year colleges or universities only hire professors at the doctorate level, it isn't uncommon for community and junior colleges to require only a Master's level education for their faculty members. Subjects such as organic chemistry and general chemistry are usually taught at this level. Another responsibility of chemistry professors is to oversee the activities of the chemistry labs, which includes supervising student safety, ordering supplies and maintaining cleanliness of the facilities. If you enjoy teaching concepts to groups, are patient, well-spoken and want to influence the minds of students, this may be the job for you.

The kinds of career options available in the field of chemistry are vast and depend upon your area of academic interest, preferred work environment and skill set, along with the degree you pursue. These are merely a representative segment of the jobs available with a Master's in Chemistry.

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