Chemistry - General, B.S.

Chemistry - General, B.S.

What is a chemistry degree?

Chemistry BSCareer options in chemistry are very diverse. While there are chemistry degree choices that allow you to specialize your knowledge and career path such as biochemistry or premedical chemistry, a chemistry degree also offers you a wide range of career options and earnings potential.

If you want to explore the mysteries of Alzheimer's disease, aid in the development of life-sustaining pharmaceuticals or discover new applications of nanotechnology, a chemistry degree will provide the knowledge and experience you need. Your career choices include such jobs as materials science, research and development, forensics, consumer products, government policy or food chemistry. Because chemistry is such a versatile science, it is easy to find interesting career opportunities in any industrial, educational, scientific or government field.

Science is Hands-On at Florida Tech

Our program is dynamic and comprehensive. Accredited by the American Chemical Society, Florida Tech's course of study includes organic, inorganic, physical and analytical chemistry, as well as mathematics and physics. Courses like General Chemistry and Calculus-Based Physics are part of your freshman program. As you continue the program, your chemistry degree program involves hands-on experience including conducting nanotechnology experiments in the lab. All while working beside highly qualified faculty who care and will guide you to success.

Build Professional Relationships

Beyond the classroom, chemistry majors build leadership and professional experience through internships and participation in academic organizations like the Chemistry Club (Florida Tech's chapter of the American Chemical Society student affiliate), Student Government and over 100 other student organizations.

Gain Practical Experience

This course of study is very hands-on, with small classes and intensive faculty-student interaction. Your program provides for building practical skills in technical electives and specialized labs. Other opportunities include independent or collaborative (with a peer or professor) research in a topic of your choosing. As a result, you build practical experience, an enhanced job search portfolio and a stronger sense of yourself as a scholar–the perfect preparation for graduate and professional school and employment.

Florida Tech Graduates are In Demand

Graduate from Florida Tech and you're ready for recruitment! Employers that have recruited Florida Tech students for internships and careers include Bristol Meyers Squibb, Florida Solar Energy Center, Merck and Company, Motorola, NASA, and Pfizer Pharmaceuticals and Sherwin Williams.

Earn an Advanced Chemistry Degree

After receiving their chemistry degree, many of our students go on to graduate programs at Florida Tech and other prestigious universities, such as Emory, Columbia, Penn State, Princeton, and the University of Florida.

Envision yourself at Florida Tech–a university already operating in the future–and imagine how far a world-class chemistry degree will take you.

Why pursue a chemistry degree at Florida Tech?

Because chemistry is so fundamental to our world, it is often referred to as the central science that joins together physics and mathematics, biology and medicine, and the Earth and environment. Students with a bachelor's level education in chemistry are well prepared to be part of a career field that never seems to lack job opportunity.

Florida Tech Is One of the Country's Top Chemistry Schools

Florida Tech is an ideal location for students seeking a career in chemistry. In fact, the American Chemical Society accredits the Florida Tech chemistry program. The department has strong professional ties to Kennedy Space Center and Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, which means more opportunities for students.

Another reason Florida Tech is one of the top chemistry schools is because at Florida Tech, chemistry is not just something you study, it's something you go into the lab and do. All undergraduate students conduct research and find a home in a research group as early as their first year, conducting hands-on, high-caliber research that may be published in a scientific journal or research exchange with other top chemistry schools. In fact, a high percentage of chemistry graduates have published a paper in a scientific journal by the time they graduate.

Individualized Attention and Collaborative Learning

Florida Tech is one of the top chemistry schools because of its approach to individualized learning. Attentive and active faculty members work closely with students, who benefit by the program's small class size. All students participate in research in a faculty member's lab using high-tech, state-of-the-art instruments. Chemistry majors also enjoy lectures by world-renowned instructors. Our high standards, quality faculty, and reputation for hands-on research make Florida Tech one of the top chemistry schools for any student aiming to earn a degree in chemistry.

High-Tech Laboratories Filled with Modern Instrumentation

In terms of facilities, Florida Tech is considered among the top chemistry schools because students have access to the F.W. Olin Physical Sciences Center (and Instrumentation Center). This 70,000-square-foot facility houses the chemistry department, teaching and research laboratories, state-of-the-art instrumentation, and rooms for photochemistry, glassblowing and computational chemistry.

An Excellent Location with an Even Better Climate

Other top chemistry schools find it hard to compete with Florida Tech's location. Our beautiful 130-acre campus is located in Melbourne, Florida in the heart of the Space Coast. Not only is the area near 72 miles of Atlantic Ocean beaches, it is minutes away from the Indian River Lagoon, the most diverse estuary in North America.

There are many attractions that are also easily accessible, such as the NASA Kennedy Space Center, Brevard Zoo, Port Canaveral, Sebastian Inlet and Orlando theme parks. Campus life provides a wide range of activities for students from intramural and intercollegiate sports, to student organizations and area events and activities. With warm weather nearly year-round, it's the perfect fun-in-the-sun location for any active college student. When looking at the top chemistry schools, Florida Tech is the perfect choice.

How will a chemistry degree prepare me for the future?

Chemistry internships are a valuable part of the Florida Tech experience. By working hands-on using the tools and techniques use of professional chemists, our students gather valuable knowledge that extends beyond the classroom. Some of the organizations that provide chemistry internships to our students include:

  • NASA

  • Oak Ridge National Lab

  • Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute

  • Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute

Through chemistry internships provided by these and many other companies, Florida Tech students forge connections that eventually lead to careers after college.

Take Part in Cutting-Edge Chemistry Research

All undergraduates participate in research, often in both the classroom and chemistry internships. Many students join cutting-edge faculty research teams, working side by side experienced professors to conduct original research. Students build valuable skills and a highly competitive resume that equips them for future chemistry jobs. Some of the research topics studied by our faculty include:

  • Alzheimer's research

  • Pharmaceutical development

  • Polyurethane foams for fireproofing and energy absorption

  • Hydrogen as an alternative energy source

  • Chronic inflammatory diseases

  • Nanotechnology

In addition to faculty-led research, all students present papers at American Chemical Society meetings. Many chemistry students publish their papers in scientific journals. These publications allow our students to build a portfolio to present to potential employers for chemistry internships and careers. A few research programs unique to Florida Tech exist in medical chemistry, bioorganic chemistry, polymer chemistry and space-related chemistry. Research is a great way for students to gain experience working with scientific instrumentation, learn valuable laboratory skills and find out how chemical research is really done.

Choose from Several Clubs and Organizations to Enhance Your Degree

The student chapter of the American Chemical Society is dedicated to making chemistry interesting and fun to people of all disciplines. ACS regularly holds several popular events around campus, including ice cream socials and silver bottling, an annual event many students and faculty look forward to.

Florida Tech's range of chemistry internships and study in the field of chemistry make the university an attractive option for anyone interested in a chemistry career.

What can you do with a chemistry degree?

Chemistry is a diverse field of study that ultimately provides career opportunities in environmental science, biotechnology, forensic science, medicine, agriculture, materials science, energy and more.

For those students who want to explore the mysteries of disease, aid in the development of life-sustaining pharmaceuticals, or discover chemical counter-measures for biological threat agents, chemistry is exactly the right field of study. A Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from Florida Tech prepares you for  chemistry careers so you can explore the multitude of questions about our world and the chemical processes that make life possible.

Career Outlook

The Occupational Outlook Handbook, published by the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), provides information about specific jobs including median annual pay, working conditions and job outlook, among other things. The handbook reports the following job diversity a chemistry career provides:

  • Chemist and Material Scientist

  • Chemistry Teacher Postsecondary

  • Biochemist and Biophysicist

  • Forensic Scientist

  • Chemical Engineer

  • Food Scientist or Flavorist (Flavor Chemist)

  • Chemical Technician

  • Pharmacist

  • Environmental Engineer

  • Environmental Scientists and Specialist

  • Medical Scientist

According to the handbook, employment for chemists is expected to continue to grow through 2020, especially for individuals who obtain their Ph.D., as large pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms continue to look for experienced chemists to fill senior research positions.

Whether you enter the workforce immediately after graduation to begin your chemistry career, or upon successful completion of a graduate or doctoral degree program, a chemistry degree from Florida Tech is the first step (even if medical school is in your plans.)

Entry-Level Salary Expectations

Entry-level salaries for students with degrees in chemistry are reported by PayScale.com to be $44,700 with further earning potential to grow to $87,500.

Other careers with a chemistry degree also provide good salary potential such as:

Agricultural and food scientists: $44,000 – $81,100
Environmental scientists: $47,900 – $89,700
Medical scientists: $54,900 – $90,640
Chemical engineers: $67,500 – $111,000

PayScale.com is an online salary information company that helps people obtain accurate real-time information on job market compensation.

Florida Tech Grads in High Demand for Graduate School

A large percentage of our students attend graduate school at outstanding institutions such as:

  • Columbia University

  • Emory University

  • Georgia Tech

  • Princeton University

  • University of Florida

  • Auburn University

  • Johns Hopkins

  • Ohio State University

  • University of Texas

Who's Hiring Florida Tech Graduates?

No matter when you begin your chemistry career, employers will be waiting. Florida Tech alums have been recruited by companies such as:

  • Florida Solar Energy Center

  • Merck & Co.

  • Motorola

  • NASA

  • Pfizer Pharmaceuticals

  • Proctor and Gamble

  • Sherwin Williams

The employment outlook and salaries for a chemistry career are excellent. No matter what chemistry career you choose, a degree from Florida Tech will prepare you to enter the workplace.

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