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Understanding Chemistry prepares students for careers in medicine, patent law and many diverse fields.


What are recent graduates doing now?

Graduate study is an attractive option. Students with graduate degrees generally get higher salaries and have more decision-making authority in their jobs. The list below is a small sample of recent graduates who are pursuing graduate degrees in chemistry as well as those pursuing many other options.

Josh Speros '08 Ph.D., U of M '13. Works at BASF developing new material for solar panels.
Matthew Humbert '10 is attending Medical School at Washington University in St. Louis.
Megan Brown '11 is working at Dyne Technologies studying firefighting chemicals.
Jennifer Wind '11 is attending pharmacy school at the U of M.

Gabriella Perrel '12 is attending graduate school at the U of M studying protein-protein interactions in disease pathways.
Cole Johnson '13 is attending graduate school at the U of IL doing computational studies of molecular interactions.

Learning opportunities outside of the classroom:

Internships. There are ample opportunities for industrial internship opportunities; examples of current or recent experiences include 3M, Eli Lilly (pharmaceutical research) and DiaSorin (local biotech company).

Study abroad. There are many opportunities for chemistry majors who wish to study abroad. Austin Johnson ’06 studied in Beijing and Chongqing, China where he took graduate-level business and economics classes at the prestigious University of International Business and Economics. Maureen O’Connor ’07 spent a semester studying at the University of Ireland – Galway. Although she took the semester off of chemistry courses, she still graduated in four years with a B.S. in chemistry.

Faculty research, presentations, publications:

We have a very active collaborative research program in chemistry. Currently we have more than 30 students working on research projects in our department. Visit our website for a summary of current research opportunities and recent research presentations and publications.

What jobs are possible with a Chemistry major?

  • Pharmaceutical Chemist – molecular design and synthesis of new medicines
  • Nutritional Chemist – study molecules and processes related to nutrition
  • Biotech Materials Chemist – design of new materials for health care products
  • Energy Materials Chemist – design of new materials for green energy products
  • Electronic Materials Chemist – design of new materials for electronic devices such as cell phones and Tvs
  • Materials Chemist (other) - design of biodegradable products, paints, construction materials, etc.)
  • Environmental Chemist – Study molecular pathways of importance to the earth's environment
  • Quality Control Chemist – perform measurements to assure the purity or other quality of products
  • Food Chemist – study of food properties, design and study of preservatives and additives
  • Pharmacist – work with physicians and patients in administering drugs
  • Physician
  • Teacher
  • Patent Attorney – Work with clients to patent new technical products
  • Agricultural Chemist – design and study of fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides
  • Pulp and Paper Chemist – design and study of paper products
  • Instrumental Chemist – design and study of instruments for chemical and physiological measurements
  • Sales Representative – sales of any of the products in the areas described above.
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