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11/20/2019 5:07:11 PM
Posted: 11/5/2009 3:54:14 AM EST
My girlfriend is finishing up her PhD in non-organic chemistry. Her research and thesis are on nano-structures in lithium batterys.

Anyways, I guess doing straight research isn't for her, she said she'd rather find a job that isn't heavily research-based, and she's open to teaching, but most teaching jobs (short of high school or community colleges) have some amount of researching, and even then she needs more experience to be a professor.

I've been telling her that she should try and see what's out there in industry, but she has no clue what she's qualified for...

So, does anyone have a clue what she could do with a Chemistry PhD, other than than post-doc work or research?

Link Posted: 11/5/2009 3:59:08 AM EST
Hate to say it, but why get a science PhD if you don't want to do research? Most likely you will do research in industry, especially with a background like hers.

One thing I can suggest is patent law, you do have to get some more schooling but you can do it without being a lawyer. Of course everyone i know that went this rout hated it and ended up back in research.

And FWIW teaching at a HS/comm college level is about the only teaching you can do w/o research.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 3:59:20 AM EST
There are no shortage of smaller schools that require more teaching than research. Look at the sub 10-15k student schools. They are considered teaching schools, not research hells.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:20:57 AM EST

Originally Posted By Harlikwin:
Hate to say it, but why get a science PhD if you don't want to do research? Most likely you will do research in industry, especially with a background like hers.

One thing I can suggest is patent law, you do have to get some more schooling but you can do it without being a lawyer. Of course everyone i know that went this rout hated it and ended up back in research.

And FWIW teaching at a HS/comm college level is about the only teaching you can do w/o research.

yeah, I have no clue why she went the PhD route if she didn't want to do research... atleast they paid her to get it.

I got my BS in aero & mechie engineering and never looked back, had a bucket of jobs to apply to, started work like 3 weeks after I graduated.

Back when she started the PhD program she mentioned going into patent law, but she heard the same thing you said, thats its not fun to do.


Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:31:09 AM EST
My Bro in law has a Phd in Physics Engineering. He works for a publicly traded company in space systems.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:34:41 AM EST
There are many people in industry who have PHDs, they extend well beyond academia.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:45:35 AM EST
Originally Posted By ag04blast:
There are many people in industry who have PHDs, they extend well beyond academia.


Yeah but the junior ones tend to be doing the day in day out research, esp in that field.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:03:42 AM EST
Originally Posted By bdub:
There are no shortage of smaller schools that require more teaching than research. Look at the sub 10-15k student schools. They are considered teaching schools, not research hells.


Ditto - its what I do. Many schools value teaching over research.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:06:35 AM EST
Think tanks.

Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:12:03 AM EST
Not a PhD, and don't really have a clue about job requirements, but I do happen to know that there are jobs out there in such things as hospital labs, forensics labs, etc, dealing with samples for toxicology, routine blood chemistries, etc. Just a thought - don't know how useful it is, but I hope it helps.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:13:05 AM EST
I work for a very large utility company. We have several doctorate degrees here. Only a few of us do any research.

Tell her to apply at the power company, especially if there is a nuclear facility.

Of course, I had my resume on file here for over 8 years before getting a call.

Finally met the right people and I was in like Flynn.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:15:34 AM EST
A BIL has a PhD in Chemistry and worked at HP fabricating semiconductors

At my work we have a lot of PhDs in Physics and sciences.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:18:34 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/5/2009 5:21:01 AM EST by kill-9]
One could literally save millions of lives.


[Dr. Norman] Borlaug received his Ph.D. in plant pathology and genetics from the University of Minnesota in 1942. He took up an agricultural research position in Mexico, where he developed semi-dwarf, high-yield, disease-resistant wheat varieties.

During the mid-20th century, Borlaug led the introduction of these high-yielding varieties combined with modern agricultural production techniques to Mexico, Pakistan, and India. As a result, Mexico became a net exporter of wheat by 1963. Between 1965 and 1970, wheat yields nearly doubled in Pakistan and India, greatly improving the food security in those nations. These collective increases in yield have been labeled the Green Revolution, and Borlaug is often credited with saving over a billion people from starvation.


Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:22:54 AM EST
in some industries, a PhD is pretty much expected if you want to start your own consulting firm.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:24:36 AM EST
My oldest cousin has a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. He has worked in the aerospace industry for the last 20 yrs. He work in the private sector most of that time, but now works for NASA.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:35:25 AM EST
Most of our PhD's are senior scientists or engineers working on government contracts supporting aerospace, signal processing, chem/bio defense and other secret squirrel shit.

I believe many of them got PhD's after establishing themselves in their chosen profession, with multiple years of experience in the workforce, and are using the PhD to distinguish themselves from others with only BS or MS degrees.

I never understand why people would do BS/MS(or MBA)/PhD with little to no real work experience in between. That sort of progression seems to always lead to academic research work, or teaching. At least among my peers, friends, and their friends.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:38:06 AM EST
forensics if she so desires

http://www.aafs.org/default.asp?page_id=current_openings&section_id=employment
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 5:41:30 AM EST
AFAIK, most industry work with a science PhD is going to be R&D.
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