|MadSci Network: Chemistry|
As a soon-to-graduate analytical chemist, I am acutely aware of both the employment situation and starting salaries for chemists. For all types of chemists (for example, analytical, physical, organic, inorganic, biological, etc), those with bachelors degrees (BA and BS degrees) have a median starting salary of about $29k/year (a median is used because it removes bias from the few very high starting salaries). Recent masters graduates (MS) have a median starting salary of about $38k/year, while doctoral graduates (PhD) had a median starting salary of about $55k/year. In all cases, these numbers are for those employed in permanent, full time jobs (thereby excluding post-doctoral research assistants, for example (they typically earn about $25k/year if they are employed in academics), which would lower the median PhD salary if included). This information was taken from Chemical and Engineering News, March 9, 1998. This publication is sent to all American Chemical Society members. Most high school chemistry teachers should be members of the ACS, and thereby receive it (it should be available from high school libraries as well). The hottest areas of chemistry today (in terms of areas of chemistry that employers are hiring the most) are probably biological, organic, and analytical. As such, the salaries for chemists in these areas might be slightly higher than those listed above. I personally know of analytical PhD graduates that have started at $70k+/yr, masters graduates in organic chemistry that have started at nearly $50k/yr, and bachelors graduates making mid $30k/yr (many bachelors degree jobs are analytical in nature as well). Mike Weibel
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