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What Can I do With a Degree in Chemistry?

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List of Employers who Posted Jobs in Handshake for Chemistry Majors

Chemistry majors may find employment in a variety of areas depending on their skills and experience. Places of employment for chemists include private industry (pharmaceutical, chemical, food manufacturing); environmental testing and research laboratories; biotechnology firms; federal, state, and local government agencies; and educational institutions. Career-related internships or career-related part-time jobs may be a prerequisite to finding professional-level employment after graduation.

The following list of employers and job titles was derived from Advising & Career Services' jobs database where the employer specifically requested chemistry majors. This list does not reflect all potential places of employment or kinds of jobs for chemistry majors. This list does not reflect current openings.

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Careers Reported by Chemistry Majors on the American Community Survey

The following list of job titles was generated from American Community Survey data. Every year, the federal government surveys 3,000,000 people. This list shows some of the most-often reported careers for people who majored in chemistry. 

Please be aware that additional education, internships, or career-related experience may be a prerequisite to some of the careers on this list. Advising & Career Services provides this list as a tool for generating ideas for exploration. To find a brief description of the following occupations, go the the Standard Occupational Classification system.

  • Physicians and Surgeons
  • Postsecondary Teachers
  • Chemists and Materials Scientists
  • Managers
  • Physical Scientists
  • Elementary and Middle School Teachers
  • Medical and Life Scientists
  • Dentists
  • Secondary School Teachers
  • Pharmacists
  • Management Analysts
  • Chief Executives and Legislators
  • Lawyers and Judges
  • Software Developers, Applications and Systems Software
  • Clinical Laboratory Technologists and Technicians
  • Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Manufacturing
  • Chemical Technicians
  • Accountants and Auditors
  • Medical and Health Services Managers
  • Education Administrators
  • Marketing and Sales Managers
  • Industrial Production Managers
  • Registered Nurses
  • Computer Systems Analysts
  • Market Research Analysts and Marketing Specialists
  • Computer Programmers

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Government Classification Specifications

Classification Specifications are generic descriptions of jobs in government agencies. Generally, they provide an overview of the job and describe essential duties and responsibilities as well as requisite knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) and educational requirements. Classification specifications can be useful in identifying organizations that hire people with an academic background in chemistry.

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Vocational Biographies

Vocational Biographies describes the career success stories of 1001 real people. Search by career title, keyword, topic, and career cluster. Username: portland su and pass code: 3w9n

  • Chemical Engineer
  • Pharmacist
  • Cell Research Chemist

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Professional Associations

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Sites with Career-Related Information for Chemistry Majors

  • Chemists and Materials Scientists — From the Occupational Outlook Handbook.
  • Chemists — Occupation Profiles Report from the State of Oregon Labor Department. Includes a brief description of what chemists do, current job openings, salary information, and employment outlook in Oregon.
  • What is Cereal Grain Science — From the American Association of Cereal Chemists.
  • What is Forensic Chemistry? — Brief description of forensic chemistry from the Forensic Chemistry Network.

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Department of Chemistry - Portland State University

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