materials scientists find ways to make chemicals useful to us.
They also try to improve things that people use daily, such as
paint, medicine, and cosmetics, as well as cars and airplanes.
Chemists also search for new chemicals in nature. They search
for ways to save energy and reduce pollution. Their research on
living things helps doctors, farmers, and food preparers do their
are a part of all physical world around us. Some chemists watch
what happens when they mix two or more chemicals together. They
explain what they might see, smell, or feel. From their research,
they can create new products. Chemists can also improve products
we already have and show us new ways to use them.
and materials scientists work in factories. They tell plant workers
which ingredients to use to make a chemical. They also tell the
workers how long to mix chemicals, and how hot or cold the mixture
should be. They watch the whole process to make sure that they
get the right product at the end. They test samples to make sure
they meet industry and government rules, and record and report
on test results.
materials scientists usually work regular hours in offices and
laboratories. Labs have all sorts of equipment to do experiments.
Research chemists spend most of their time in labs. Sometimes
they work in offices when they have to write reports on their
lab work. Some of the large labs have factories or places where
workers make examples of the real products. For example, materials
scientists may work closely with engineers and other workers in
manufacturing facilities. Chemists may also do some of their research
in a factory or outdoors. For example, when they go outside, they
can get samples of the air to test for pollution. Some chemists
work around dangerous chemicals. They have to wear protective
clothing and follow rules to keep them safe on their jobs.
|How do you get ready to be a chemist?
a chemist, a person needs to have a bachelor's degree in chemistry
or a related subject. Materials scientists need a college degree
in materials science, or chemistry, physics, or electrical engineering.
However, chemists and materials scientists usually need a Ph.D.
for research jobs.
want to become chemists or materials scientists tend to enjoy
science and math in school. They also like to build things with
their hands and experiment with different objects. Students must
be willing to work hard and independently, ask a lot of questions,
and focus on details. They must be willing to work by themselves.
Students should learn how to work on the computer.
need chemists and materials scientists who know about other subjects
in the business field. They also need persons who can be leaders.
Reading, writing, and speaking skills are also important.
|How much does a chemist get paid?
chemists depend in part on the amount of schooling a person has.
According to a survey by the American Chemical Society, chemists
who graduated with a bachelor's degree earned $32,800 a year in
2002. Chemists who graduated with a master's degree earned $50,000,
and those with a Ph.D. earned $68,000.
materials scientists held about 91,000 jobs in 2002. Nearly half
of the jobs were in manufacturing firms. A lot of the firms were
in the chemical manufacturing industry. This industry produces
plastics and synthetic materials, drugs, soaps and cleaners, paints,
industrial organic chemicals, and other chemical products. Others
work for scientific research and development firms. Some find
jobs in Federal, State, and local governments. In addition, thousands
of chemists teach in high schools and colleges and universities.
materials scientists are employed in all parts of the United States.
Most of them work in cities that have a lot of different industries.
of chemists and materials scientists is expected to grow about
as fast as the average for all occupations through 2012. There
will be job openings in industries that sell things that a lot
of people want to buy.
are especially looking for chemists and materials scientists who
have a master's or Ph.D. degree.
|Are there other jobs like this?
and food scientists
technicians (chemical technicians)
Outlook Handbook -- U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics
about chemists and materials scientists can be found in the Careers Database.
|Where can you find more information?