A chemist is a type of scientist who specializes in chemistry, the interaction between different substances and the elementary construction of materials. Chemists are normally employed by private companies, working on a variety of different projects – chemists are needed in processing plants, plastic factories, the pharmaceutical industry, and even the food industry. A chemist is usually involved in research and development work, performing tests and experiments in order to improve a specific quality of the product developed by the company, or find new solutions altogether.
Becoming a chemist requires a degree in chemistry, and while a Master’s degree is not strictly required, it can benefit a candidate greatly. In most cases beginner chemists aren’t allowed to participate in experiments directly, instead being tasked with observing and studying from the more experienced ones, while also helping them with some of the more general tasks such as preparing the experiment. Being allowed to work on research projects requires a Doctorate and there are no exceptions from this rule. A Doctorate also opens up the doors to other chemistry-related jobs, such as teaching in universities.
Despite the strict requirements for becoming a chemist, the job doesn’t tend to be so well-compensated as other research-related jobs. Chemists earn between $37,000 – $55,000 a year, and the only viable possibility for increasing income is to earn a Doctorate and get accepted to work on research projects, which tend to be well-funded and appropriately compensated as well. A chemist may also earn a stable income if they’re self-employed in some cases.