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What can I do with a degree in Chemistry?
You will find opportunities with employers in many different sectors, including food, manufacturing, energy, health and medical, the government, scientific research organisation, transport, oil and gas, renewables & nuclear.
Industries that rely on a degree in chemistry could include:
- Perfumes and Cosmetics
- Textiles and dyes
- Bio Materials
A degree in chemistry could lead you to a graduate career in some of the following areas:
- Analytical chemistry: analyse chemicals and investigate their properties to develop new products and treatments. (This could be in the Food utilities and Cosmetics industry)
- Chemoinformatics: combine chemical expertise with informatics techniques to assess large quantities of information and address chemical issues.
- Forensic science: investigate crime scenes and analyse samples.
- Materials research: conduct technical investigations into the characteristics of various materials.
- Pharmaceuticals: manufacture, develop and research new pharmaceutical products.
- Scientific research- Science graduates will usually specialise in a specific area; they may be undertaking fundamental health research, developing IT technologies, refining manufacturing processes, or innovating solutions. There is a broad range of possibilities.
- Agricultural Chemist - Agricultural chemists, also called agrochemists, collect and analyse samples for nutrient levels as well as levels of pesticides, heavy metals, and toxins
- Chemical Engineer
- Chemistry Teacher
Thank you to Prospects for the content on these pages.
You will also find opportunities with employers in many different sectors, including the food and drink industry, utilities and research, health and medical organisations, the government and scientific research organisations and agencies, Patent Law, Scientific publishing and health and safety
Careers related to the numeracy, analytical, and problem solving skills of chemistry graduates
- Investment Banking
- Civil Service
- Management Consultancy
Please use our career guides to identify some of these opportunities.
As well as developing strong lab skills a degree in Chemistry gives you ability to demonstrate the following skills that are highly valued by employers:
- Numerical ability,
- Analytical skills
- Written and oral communication
- Lab skills
- Excellent teamwork
- Time-management skills from planning and carrying out experiments
- Expertise in IT, including processing data and using computer software models.
Work Experience and internship opportunities
Chemistry related jobs are particularly competitive, so it is valuable, and sometimes crucial, to gain practical experience in the field.
Work experience demonstrates your commitment to the career and knowledge of what is involved.
During your course, you could also use the summer holidays or evenings and weekends to get some experience through paid opportunities or voluntary work.
A number of organisations offer work experience including:
- The Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC)- https://stfc.ukri.org/skills/students-and-graduates/
- Wellcome Sanger Institute- https://jobs.sanger.ac.uk/vacancies.html
- Medical research Council - Has an excellent resource to support students in finding opportunities for funding, job, studentships as well as lots of careers advice as well. https://mrc.ukri.org/skills-careers/
- The Nuffield Foundation offer research placements
- The Year in Industry is the UK's leading student placement experts who offer one-year placements before starting university.
- https://www.brightgreenbusiness.org.uk/-offers opportunities to students and graduates to work with organisations across Scotland
You could also try contacting science museums, research and clinical laboratories, conservation facilities or pharmaceutical companies and life science companies directly. The following links are useful links of companies:
- Chemagility - worldwide directly of chemical distribution companies
Find a job
Employers of chemistry graduates
A range of employers recruit graduates for chemistry related jobs including:
- Universities and clinical research organisations;
- Pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies;
- Private hospitals and NHS trusts;
- National and global health and environmental charities;
- Scientific and technical consultancies;
- Schools and colleges;
- Museums, science centres and broadcast companies.
- Research institutions
- Forensic Labs
A Sample of employers that fall into the above categories
- GE UK
- Morgan Advanced Materials
- James Fisher & sons
- Mott Macdonald
- National Nuclear Lab
- Defence Equipment & Support
- Severn Trent Water
- Econic Technologies
- Smiths Medical
Additional resources to help you find a job