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Career Outcomes

Your Success Story Is Waiting. There are a wide variety of career opportunities for individuals skilled in the chemical sciences. Students have gone on to excel in the areas of academia, government, industry, and the nonprofit sector.

The American Chemical Society provides extensive resources to help you learn more about chemistry careers. Discover career paths in a wide variety of specializations, as well as search for open positions.

Plan Your Major                        Apply to Vanderbilt


Recent Graduates

What do our chemistry majors do after graduation? Our students have a range of interests and succeed in a wide variety of careers. Some pursue graduate school in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical biology, and engineering fields. Others pursue graduate degrees in business, law, and health. Some attend medical school, dental school, and other health-related post-baccalaureate programs. You will find our graduates working in industry, consulting, computer programing, research and development, and education, to name a few.

Class of 2022

Abigail Boldt – University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine
Rebekah Crane – science teaching fellow at The Lawrenceville School – Nashville, TN
Kathryn Fink – research assistant, MD Anderson Cancer Center
Campbell Flower – environmental/analytical industry job in Chicago, IL
Robert Gottschalk – NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Science
Alexandra Grace – program assistant at the Smithsonian Science Education Center in Washington, D.C.
Farrah Hassan – fellow at the Center for Environmental Politics, University of Washington’s School of Marine and Environmental Affairs
Joseph Hatcher – associate, Client Services at AlphaSights
Yumeng “Jennifer” Jiang – software engineer, Google – San Francisco, CA
Kev (Chang Kyu) Jung – program assistant at the Office of Student Transition and Community Engagement, Vanderbilt University
Serena Pao – high school chemistry teacher at Hume Fogg High School in Nashville, TN
Andrew Pumford – medical school at the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine in Rochester, Minnesota
Julia Raziel – associate scientist, The Estée Lauder Companies Inc., New York, NY
Bethanie Stauffer – U.S. teaching assistant in Austria
Long Than – Stanford University, Ph.D. in chemical engineering
Matthew Tremblay – Yale University, Ph.D. in chemistry
Sophie Vogelsang – University of Wisconsin, Ph.D. in chemistry
Nicole Wright – Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX
Ryan Zhou – John’s Hopkins University, Ph.D. in chemical and biomolecular engineering

Class of 2021

Sterling Gilliam III – ensign, US Navy
Eric Ho – Emory University, Ph.D. in chemistry
Brandon Jacome-MendezRutgers University, master’s in biomedical science
Oliver Jimenez – analyst with Amherst – Austin, TX
Rebecca Kim – Student Center for Social Justice & Identity, Vanderbilt University
Lauren (Dawool) Kim – business analyst at McKinsey & Company – New York, NY
Jair PowellUniversity of Illinois, Chicago – Ph.D. in chemistry
Jada Sherrod – Columbia University – master’s of health administration
Elly Shin – scientist (R&D) at Loyal Pharmaceuticals – Nashville, TN
Sahil Soni – Columbia University – law school – New York, NY
Amelia Taylor – University of Pennsylvania – MD/Ph.D. program
Puxin Xuanyuan – scientist at Illumina – Los Angeles, CA

Class of 2020

Jonathan Algoo – Columbia University – Ph.D. in neurology
Kevin Buck – University of Wisconsin, Madison – Ph.D. chemistry
Wenjing Chen – quantitative analyst at Citi – New York, NY
Kaelyn Dwyer – University of Wisconsin, Madison – School of Pharmacy – PharmD Program
Tavia Keating – biochemistry research associate – Omeros Corporation – Seattle, WA
Aodong (Adam) Liu – University of Washington – Ph.D. in chemistry
Lanesa Mahon – University of Cincinnati, James L. Winkle College of Pharmacy – Ph.D. in cosmetic chemistry
Brian Noh – research assistant, University of Texas, McGovern Medical School – Houston, TX
David Qiu – University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill – Ph.D. in chemistry
Dylan Reilly – consultant, Oliver Wyman – Chicago, IL
Minguk Seo – Yale University – Ph.D. in chemistry
Ben Sexton – University of Michigan – D.D.S./Ph.D. Program
Hogan Sherrow – HR regional center lead, Amazon – Nashville, TN
Tiffany Shields – University of Georgia – Medical College of Georgia – M.D.
Joshua Thompkins – whole loan mortgage trader, Goldman Sachs – New York, NY
Gavin Ward – St. George’s University School of Medicine – M.D.
Andrew Whitten – University of California, Berkeley – Ph.D. in Chemical Biology

Advice from Past Students

“You are so much more than a pre-graduate student, academic, student, researcher, or chemistry major. The same qualities your transcript will reward are not necessarily those that might make you a good son/daughter, friend, significant other, mentor, etc. There are so many pieces and parts of you at the table, especially during this time of your life – work hard, but make sure your undergraduate experience gives each of those parts a voice and opportunity to grow/succeed!” – Nicole Wright, BA’22

“Being an undergraduate gives you access to professors and professionals that you may not have as a graduate, so open those channels now to facilitate an education adjacent to your classwork.” – Robert Gottschalk, BA’22

“The advice I would give to younger chemistry majors would be to seek out any and all opportunities for research, internships, work abroad etc. The experiences I’ve had in research and summer internships have been some of the best of my undergrad experience, and I’ve learned so much through them. There were so many opportunities I did not know about that I wish I had, and the summer is a great chance to explore whatever interests you have in chemistry or beyond.” – Sophie Vogelsang, BA’22

“A piece of advice for the younger chem majors would be to try to get to know as many of the chem faculty that you can and take classes which sound interesting because you probably will not otherwise have an opportunity again to do so.” – Abigail Boldt, BA’22

“My advice would be to connect with professors as much as possible. They have so much knowledge and wisdom beyond technical skill in chemistry, and it benefited me a lot in navigating the path to graduate school.” – Matthew Tremblay, BA’22

“My word of advice for chemistry majors is to trust that you are at Vanderbilt for a reason and that you belong here even when you’re surrounded by other incredible people. Know that the hardest moments that challenge you the most don’t prove otherwise, and persevering through setbacks and mistakes makes the end feel that much more rewarding.” – Campbell Flower, BA’22

“Do not take yourself, or your grades, so seriously. Spend time doing things that have absolutely nothing to do with your academic or professional aspirations, as these are some of the things that can help you have the most fun in college and expand your horizons. You never know where those additional passions may take you!” – Alexandra Grace, BA’22

“Remember that you belong here (and your grades will never change that). Take ownership of your learning and ask for help when you need it!” – Serena Pao, BA’22

“Look at electives early, because you never know what pre-reqs you’ll need and how they might change your interests. And build relationships with your professors both in and out of the major. They’re great resources.” – Bethanie Stauffer, BA’22

“My advice for the younger chem students would be to not let orgo scare you.” – Andrew Pumford, BA’22

“Do not fear exploration with failure. Research or otherwise. It is the one normal and absolute part of life and the more you get excited about getting out of a fall than fear it happening, the more you are likely to soar and take on anything. The first thing to do is face yourself and realize your potential, because the fact that you are at Vandy alone is affirmation enough.” – Kev Jung, BA’22

“It is important to establish relationships with your professors as you get further into the major and are in those smaller-sized classes. The professors really are extremely resourceful and kind and will put a lot of effort into getting to know you and helping you as best as they can. It made going to class every day and learning only that much more enjoyable and relaxed for me, despite the rigorous content.” – Julia Raziel, BA’22