Career and Education Opportunities for Chemists in Chesapeake, Virginia
There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for chemists in the Chesapeake, Virginia area. The national trend for chemists sees this job pool growing by about 2.5% over the next eight years. Chemists generally conduct qualitative and quantitative chemical analyses or chemical experiments in laboratories for quality or process control or to develop new products or knowledge.
A person working as a chemist can expect to earn about $34 hourly or $71,630 per year on average in Virginia and about $31 hourly or $66,230 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Compared with people working in the overall category of Physical Sciences, people working as chemists in Virginia earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Physical Sciences nationally. Jobs in this field include: chemical laboratory chief, cement chemist, and research and development chemist.
There are thirty-six schools of higher education in the Chesapeake area, including six within twenty-five miles of Chesapeake where you can get a degree to start your career as a chemist. Given that the most common education level for chemists is a Bachelor's degree, you can expect to spend about four years training to become a chemist if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Chemist
In general, chemists conduct qualitative and quantitative chemical analyses or chemical experiments in laboratories for quality or process control or to develop new products or knowledge.
Chemists analyze organic and inorganic compounds to establish their chemical and physical properties, composition and reactions, utilizing chromatography and spectrophotometry techniques. They also write technical papers and reports and ready standards and requirements for processes or tests. Equally important, chemists have to design and customize products, equipment and analytical methods. They are often called upon to maintain laboratory instruments to insure proper working order and troubleshoot malfunctions when needed. They are expected to compile and analyze test data. Finally, chemists talk with scientists and engineers to conduct analyses of research projects, interpret test results, or design nonstandard tests.
Every day, chemists are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to read and understand documents and reports. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.
It is important for chemists to direct and advise personnel in test processes for analyzing components and physical properties of materials. They are often called upon to induce changes in composition of substances by introducing heat and chemical catalysts for quantitative and qualitative analysis. Somewhat less frequently, chemists are also expected to ready test solutions and reagents for laboratory personnel to conduct test.
Chemists sometimes are asked to conduct quality control tests. And finally, they sometimes have to study effects of various methods of processing and packaging on composition and properties of foods.
Like many other jobs, chemists must be thorough and dependable and have exceptional integrity.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chesapeake include:
- Astronomer. Observe, research, and interpret celestial and astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge and apply such information to practical problems.
- Atmospheric Scientist. Investigate atmospheric phenomena and interpret meteorological data gathered by surface and air stations, satellites, and radar to prepare reports and forecasts for public and other uses.
- Environmental Health and Safety Specialist. Conduct research or perform investigation for the purpose of identifying, abating, or eliminating sources of pollutants or hazards that affect either the environment or the health of the population. Utilizing knowledge of various scientific disciplines may collect, synthesize, and take action based on data derived from measurements or observations of air, food, and other sources.
- Environmental Technician. Perform laboratory and field tests to monitor the environment and investigate sources of pollution, including those that affect health. Under direction of an environmental scientist or specialist, may collect samples of gases, soil, and other materials for testing and take corrective actions as assigned.
- Geological Specialist. Study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the earth. May use geological, physics, and mathematics knowledge in exploration for oil, gas, or underground water; or in waste disposal, land reclamation, or other environmental problems. May study the earth's internal composition, atmospheres, and its magnetic, electrical, and gravitational forces. Includes mineralogists, crystallographers, and seismologists.
- Hydrologist. Research the distribution, circulation, and physical properties of underground and surface waters; study the form and intensity of precipitation, its rate of infiltration into the soil, movement through the earth, and its return to the ocean and atmosphere.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Chemist Training
Christopher Newport University - Newport News, VA
Christopher Newport University, 1 University Place, Newport News, VA 23606. Christopher Newport University is a small university located in Newport News, Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,904 students and an admission rate of 56%. Christopher Newport University has a bachelor's degree program in Chemistry.
Hampton University - Hampton, VA
Hampton University, , Hampton, VA 23668-0099. Hampton University is a medium sized university located in Hampton, Virginia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has an admission rate of 45%. Hampton University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Chemistry which graduated eight and zero students respectively in 2008.
Elizabeth City State University - Elizabeth City, NC
Elizabeth City State University, 1704 Weeksville Rd, Elizabeth City, NC 27909. Elizabeth City State University is a small university located in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,105 students and an admission rate of 80%. Elizabeth City State University has a bachelor's degree program in Chemistry which graduated two students in 2008.
Old Dominion University - Norfolk, VA
Old Dominion University, 5115 Hampton Blvd, Norfolk, VA 23529. Old Dominion University is a large university located in Norfolk, Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 22,973 students and an admission rate of 72%. Old Dominion University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Chemistry which graduated eight and four students respectively in 2008.
Norfolk State University - Norfolk, VA
Norfolk State University, 700 Park Ave, Norfolk, VA 23504-8000. Norfolk State University is a medium sized university located in Norfolk, Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,330 students and an admission rate of 68%. Norfolk State University has a bachelor's degree program in Chemistry which graduated eight students in 2008.
Virginia Wesleyan College - Norfolk, VA
Virginia Wesleyan College, 1584 Wesleyan Dr, Norfolk, VA 23502-5599. Virginia Wesleyan College is a small college located in Norfolk, Virginia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,381 students and an admission rate of 77%. Virginia Wesleyan College has a bachelor's degree program in Chemistry which graduated three students in 2008.
Certified Water Technologist: The Certified Water Technologist (CWT) program represents the highest professional credential in the industrial and commercial water treatment field.
For more information, see the Association of Water Technologies website.
Protective Coatings Specialist: This certification is geared toward individuals who are experienced, knowledgeable and capable of performing work at an advanced level in both the theory and practice of corrosion prevention and control, and who are capable of performing work at an advanced level in the protective coatings field.
For more information, see the NACE International website.
Registered Environmental Laboratory Technologist: RELT -- Registered Environmental Laboratory Technologist is a special registration/certification for persons engaged in the laboratory management and/or analysis of environmental samples.
For more information, see the National Registry of Environmental Professionals website.
Certified Metalworking Fluids Specialist: Certified Metalworking Fluids Specialists are those individuals who have met minimum standards of experience, knowledge and written examination requirements as established by the STLE Metalworking Fluids Certification Committee to provide technical consultation in the field of metalworking fluids management.
For more information, see the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Chesapeake, Virginia
Chesapeake is located in Chesapeake City County, Virginia. It has a population of over 220,111, which has grown by 10.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chesapeake, 87, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Chesapeake are priced at $160,000 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, five hundred eighty-nine new homes were constructed in Chesapeake, down from seven hundred fifty-eight the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Chesapeake are educational services, health care, and public administration. For men, it is construction, public administration, and transportation equipment. The average travel time to work is about 25 minutes. More than 24.7% of Chesapeake residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.8%, is lower than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Chesapeake is 6.1%, which is less than Virginia's average of 6.4%.
Pleasant Grove Church, Refuge Mission Church and Saint Andrews Church are among the churches located in Chesapeake.
Chesapeake is home to the Jacks Camp and the Portlock Yard as well as Cascade Park and Ford Park. Shopping malls in the area include Great Bridge Shopping Center, Greenbrier Mall Shopping Center and Poplar Hill Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chesapeake can choose from Courtyard By Marriott, Chesapeake Travelodge Motel and Comfort Inn Bowers Hill for temporary stays in the area.