What is Chemical Engineering

We Can STEAM
2 min readAug 13, 2022

By: Kylie Cameron

What do Chemical Engineers do? What kind of education do they need? What kind of jobs can they have? What does the Job Outlook look like? Well, we’re here to answer these burning questions!

Chemical Engineering Overview

Chemical Engineers work to develop and design chemical manufacturing processes and to plan and test production methods. They also set safety and health standards for chemical usage. Some of the things that chemical engineers produce and make include: plastics, paper, dyes, medicines, polymers, fertilizers, petrochemicals, and sometimes even foods! A Chemical Engineer can most often be found in an office space or a laboratory, but sometimes they can also be found plants or refineries. In 2021, the median annual pay for a Chemical Engineer was $105,550!

Chemical Engineering Education

Chemical Engineers need at least a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering to become a Chemical Engineer but for some more advanced positions or higher up positions, a masters in Chemical Engineering is valuable.

According to USNews, some of the best schools to study for your undergraduate in Chemical Engineering are:

  1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  2. Georgia Institute of Technology
  3. University of California, Berkeley
  4. California Institute of Technology
  5. Stanford University
  6. University of Texas at Austin
  7. University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
  8. University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
  9. University of Delaware
  10. University of Wisconsin — Madison

Jobs in Mechanical Engineering

Though Chemical Engineering sounds like one would be refined to a laboratory job, Chemical Engineers can fulfill a multitude of different jobs such as:

  1. Process Design Engineer
  2. Environmental Engineer
  3. Plant Process Engineer
  4. Process Safety Engineer
  5. Technical Sales Person
  6. Environmental waste management
  7. Chemical Plant Technical Director
  8. Petroleum Engineer
  9. Project Engineer
  10. Product Engineer
  11. Process Safety Engineer
  12. Operations/production
  13. Material Engineer
  14. Mining engineer
  15. Water engineer
  16. Nuclear engineer
  17. Petroleum engineer
  18. Biotechnologist

Mechanical Engineering Outlook

In 2021, the job outlook for a Chemical Engineer from 2020–2030 is 9%, which is exciting for any prospective Chemical Engineers or any current Chemical Engineers!

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