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A Future in Chemistry
By Amber Gragert
In the 1600's a brilliant man by the name of Johann Joachim Becher said of his profession, "The chemists are a strange class of mortals, impelled by an almost insane impulse to seek their pleasures amid smoke and vapor, soot and flame, poisons and poverty; yet among all these evils I seem to live so sweetly that may I die if I were to change places with the Persian king.”
If you too have an affinity for the sciences and like to find answers to fundamental questions like, “How?” and “Why?” and just need to know bare bone basics of how substances are made, then chemistry is a major well suited for you.
According to the Miriam-Webster dictionary, chemistry is “a science that deals with the structure and properties of substances and with the changes they go through: the structure and properties of a substance: the way a substance changes and reacts with other substances.” As a chemistry major, you will study topics like the chemical make up for life and how chemicals affect and/or create problems in the environment. You will look at an object at an atomic level to find out what it is made of and how it behaves.
Chemistry is at the core of your studies so you will study compounds under a microscope, write lab reports and spend ample time in a laboratory creating chemical reactions. This will all be accomplished through courses like general chemistry and organic chemistry in addition to other courses like biology, mathematics and physics.
With a chemistry major, you could work towards a career in chemistry, of course, but a large number of students also use this major as they pursue the medical and dental fields. Lab time as a chemistry major sharpens and showcases your ability to work with your hands and your quick and creative problem-solving skills – all of which medical communities find of great value and importance.
Some key traits chemists tend to have in common are analytical thinking and abstract thought processes but also find logical conclusions and solutions. They are also task oriented, have a desire for knowledge, and have a curious and inquisitive mind.
• Analytical Chemist
• Applied Research
• Product Developer
• Chemical Engineer
• Healthcare Scientist
• Forensic Scientist
• Formulation Chemist
• Laboratory Technician
• Registered Nurse
• Social Impact Activist