Chemical engineers design chemical plant equipment and devise processes for manufacturing chemicals and products, such as gasoline, synthetic rubber, plastics, detergents, cement, paper, and pulp, by applying principles and technology of chemistry, physics, and engineering.
If something is man-made, chances are, a chemical engineer had something to do with it. Because they can transform raw materials into useful products, chemical engineers are sometimes called "universal engineers".
Traditionally, chemical engineering job opportunities include process engineers’ in plastics, paper, dyes, medicines, polymers, fertilizers, petrochemicals manufacturing and food processing facilities.
Demand for chemical engineers is now emerging from non-traditional fields and industries such as environmental engineering, they are working on ways to clean up or prevent pollution, safely dispose of toxic waste, or manage a sewage treatment plant. In the field of biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, they are instrumental in creating and manufacturing surgical supplies from catheters to artificial kidneys or prosthetics. Chemical engineers work closely with electronic engineers for designing and manufacturing computer parts and other electronics. In nanotechnology, they use nanoparticles to purify contaminated groundwater and work with DNA for gene or stem cell therapies.
Chemical engineers require a bachelor’s or master's chemical engineering degree with maths and science skills. Chemical engineers can find jobs in large corporations, government entities, and small firms. Most work in large manufacturing companies as part of a team.
To have a successful, chemical engineering career, one needs to be intellectual, introspective, inquisitive, curious, methodical, rational, analytical, and logical.
Every career requires an element of study and academic qualification, and there can be several study routes and pathways you can take. In following any academic pathway you will study subjects that contribute to the specialised knowledge required to achieve your career goals. These qualifications provide a future employer with the evidence that you have the desired knowledge, understanding and experience of their industry, so it’s important to consider the various types of qualifications available to you and to understand how they can boost your career and create opportunities for you.
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