For all the students who want to choose Chemists as their career path, Chemistry is fundamental to them. We all are essentially chemists as everything around us has a chemical context. When we breathe, we light a match or boil milk we perform a chemical reaction. Our body is home to a number of chemical processes taking place inside it.
What is Chemistry?
Chemistry along with Physics, Biology, and Maths is known as Central Science.It is the study of the nature of chemical processes and chemicals within the realm of biological and physical phenomenon. Chemistry helps us understand the universe we live in and its composition.
Here are a few branches of chemistry that can specialize:
- Organic Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry
- Analytical Chemistry
- Forensic Chemistry
- Applied Chemistry
Who are the Chemists?
Why do our chocolate, Jam or Butter taste so delicious? The chemist makes them like that. The food preservatives that help these foods to last for more than a year are created by chemists. The deodorants and scents that we are using are created by chemists.
The medicines we eat have chemistry in it created by chemists.
Thus the Chemists transform ordinary stuff into extraordinary.
What does a chemist do?
A Chemist is a person who works in applied research as well as basic research. A chemist is a scientist researching chemical substances, performing experiments on chemical substances, measuring their effect on different situations. They study inter-chemical reactions.
A chemist mostly works in a laboratory. He maintains and troubleshoots various equipment, instruments, and software tools utilized for chemical analysis and processing.
The chemists are responsible for interpreting and analyzing data and equipment logs from other laboratory members. I required the chemist must show an aptitude for experimental design. The chemists also collect and document quality assurance test data.
The chemists must also be able to follow directions exactly as well as suggest improvements to improve on experiments or processes.
Skills required to become Chemist
To become a chemist you require certain basic skills. These skills can be developed by you when you complete your degree course in chemistry. Here are a few of the skills that are required by chemists.
- Scientific and Numerical skills
- Attention to detail
- Research and presentation skills
- Analytical skills
- Written and oral communication
- Information Technology
- Ability to maintain and monitor data/records
- Organizational skills
How can you become Chemists?
To pursue a career in chemistry you must first take science in your 10+2.
After completing your higher secondary in science, you must take a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. The duration is of three years. In case you want to get a bachelor’s degree in engineering, you will have to study for four years. A bachelor’s degree provides you with solid background and information about chemistry and related fields.
In case you want to study further, you can take a Master’s degree in chemistry. The eligibility criteria to get a Master’s degree is that you have passed your bachelor’s in chemistry with s minimum percentage. The duration of the master’s program is for two years. A master’s degree can lead to excellent career prospects like analytical chemists, engineers, healthcare scientists, and toxicologists which are highly paid. Also, you will be prepared for leadership and management in the industry.
Here are a few of the options for those who have cleared their bachelor’s in chemistry and want to pursue their post-graduation in chemistry.
- Masters in Chemical Engineering
- Masters of Science in Chemistry
- Masters of Science in Analytical Chemistry
- Masters of Science in Drug Chemistry
- Masters of Science in Organic Pharmaceutical Chemistry
- Masters of Science in Physical & Materials Chemistry
- Doctorate/Ph.D. in Chemistry
Here are a few of the Top Colleges in India which are offering Bachelors’s and Master’s degrees in chemistry.
- Xavier’s College
- Stephan’s College
- Presidency College
- Jamia Hamdard University, Delhi
- Loyola College, Chennai
- Fergusson College, Pune
- Hans Raj College, Delhi
- Institute of Chemical Technology
- Sri Venkateswara College, New Delhi
Here are a few of the top chemical engineering universities in India
- Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT Bombay)
- Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT Delhi)
- Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IIT Kanpur)
- Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT KGP)
- Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras)
- Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee (IIT Roorkee)
- Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS-Pilani)
- Indian Institute of Technology – Banaras Hindu University (IIT-BHU
- National Institute of Technology, Tiruchirappalli
- Indian Institute of Technology (IIT Guwahati)
A 3 year BSc degree from any of the above institutes in India will cost you between Rs60,000 to Rs500,000. A 4-year Engineering degree with a specialization in chemistry will cost Rs2,00,000 to Rs5,00,000.
In case you want to study abroad or go for your master’s degree, it will cost you around Rs15,00,000 to Rs 40,00,000 from any of the top universities.
Why become a Chemist?
Every graduate in chemistry, especially those with professional degrees would like to have a decent job in their hand after completing their graduation. There is a perception among the chemistry professionals that the top jobs are reserved for those with advanced degrees.
Chemistry graduates are high in demand and are successful from the early start in their careers. They have ample opportunities. The average growth rate of the Chemical Industry is about 6% in 2020 and is expected to continue at the same pace till 2030.
However, in India, there is not much awareness about a career in chemistry. Almost one-third of chemistry graduates work in a traditional lab. You can find a number of opportunities in petroleum companies working in their research laboratories. As a biochemist, you can widen your scope by availing conservation, environmental and medical opportunities.
Here are a few of the career paths that a chemistry professional can pursue.
Research & Development
- Research and Product Development
- Engineering and Technology
- Pigments, Inks, and Dyes
- Laboratory, Project and Industrial Management
- Project Management
- Safety and Health
- Toxic or Hazardous Waste Management
- Quality Assurance or control
- Information Management Specialist
- Human Resources
- Public Information
- Support and Communication
- Technical Communication
- Technical Sales and Marketing
- Process and Formulation Chemistry
Law and Policy
- Public Information
- Regulation of Affairs
- Social Impact
Military & Law Enforcement
- Military Science & Technology
- Forensic Science
- Professional Staff
- Basic Research
- Information Management
Chemists Job Profiles
Here are a few of the job profiles for you after you pass out as a chemistry professional:
An Analytical chemist analyses the chemical composition of different substances such as food. Medicines and other products.
The job of a Forensic expert is to collect, preserve and examine materials found at the crime scenes.
Chemical informatics Data Scientists
Chemical Informatics makes use of computer and information science techniques to store, index, and retrieve details about chemical compounds.
The job of the crystallographer is to study the molecular and atomic structure of crystals using different techniques like X-ray and microscopic imaging.
The job of the chemical engineer is to design the process of new products from other raw materials like the production of plastics, cosmetics, and raw materials.
The role of the Industrial manager is to handle projects and oversee production activities.
Chemical health and safety professional
These professionals advise companies on the best practices to ensure the safety of employees, property, and surroundings.
Quality Assurance Officer
These chemists ensure that the product manufacturing and maintenance standards are of the company’s standards and free of errors.
Regulatory Affairs Pharmacists
The role of regulatory affairs pharmacists is to regulate the guidelines on clinical trials and research.
Toxicologists are the chemists responsible for studying the effect of chemicals, drugs, and other agents on living organisms.
Quality Controller evaluates the finished products and ensures that they meet the company’s standards.
The formulation chemists know the art of mixing non-reactive materials to produce the desired product.
13 Hazardous Waste Management chemists
These chemists are responsible for coming up with ways to reduce the pollutants and their harmful effects.
The Textile chemist makes use of his knowledge of chemistry to manufacture textiles like the clothes we wear.
Pharmacologists study the effects of drugs on your body. They help in developing those drugs that are more efficient and safe for us.
Teaching chemistry in colleges is a popular profession. A bachelor’s degree in chemistry or more can help you become a professor in chemistry.
Technical Support Professional
A Technical support professional provides technical support and servicing of the lab instruments.
. Process Chemistry
The process chemists identify the problems in scaling up the production of chemical products to a commercial level and also fix issues.
Laboratory Technician supports the team in inventory, servicing lab equipment, and ensuring all standards and protocols are maintained in the laboratory.
The average salary of a chemist
At an entry-level i.e. with one year of experience, a chemist can earn about Rs 221,764 per annum in India. At his mid-career level with around 5-9 years of experience, a chemist can earn about Rs 350 000 lacs per annum. As an experienced chemist with 10-19 years of experience, you can be expected to earn Rs 5.5 lacs per annum and with above 20 years of experience, you can earn about Rs1,200,000 per annum. Lab Chemist salary in India ranges between ₹ 0.5 Lakhs to ₹ 6.0 Lakhs with an average annual salary of ₹ 2.5 Lakhs.
The average annual salary of a chemist in the USA is $83,850.
Your Employers as a chemist
The main employers of chemists are in the chemical and related industries such as
- Plastics and Polymers
You can get employment in other sectors also notably in Food and Drink Industries, utility and research, Health and Medical organizations, the government, and scientific research organizations and agencies.
Despite the fact that the career in chemistry in India is little known there is an increasing demand for chemists due to the high industrial growth in the chemical and related industries. Chemical engineers and graduates are now highly in demand, especially in international companies.
If you are really interested in taking a career in chemistry and overlook the expenses in becoming one, you have the whole world at your door knocking for every opportunity you can get.