What is a chemical engineer?

Chemical engineers apply their mathematical and scientific knowledge to develop novel manufacturing methods and establish reliable protocols for the safe and effective use of chemicals.

Plastics, pharmaceuticals, alternative fuels, and scientific breakthroughs in genetics would not exist without the work of chemical engineers.

Chemical engineering careers require serious academic commitment at an accredited educational institution. There are many different graduate and undergraduate specializations available to aspiring chemical engineers.

Here we take a closer look at the fascinating field of chemical engineering.

Chemical engineering professions under the magnifying glass

Chemical engineers are problem solvers who apply their knowledge of chemistry, mathematics, physics, and economics to real-world technological problems in manufacturing.

Those with chemical engineering jobs in Cape Town design, build and oversee the operation of plants that add value to raw materials by refining them or converting them into higher value end products.

Chemists, biologists, engineers, materials scientists, and computer scientists all contribute to the training of a chemical engineer. Not only do you learn about the environment, you also acquire expertise in economics, management and safety.

They use their knowledge to create a wide variety of chemicals, including fuels, cement, explosives, polymers, paper, dyes, and fertilizers. Their tasks also include the separation of valuable minerals from raw ores.

Designing large-scale industrial processes, improving the efficiency of current processes, and reducing the harmful effects of those processes on the environment are all specialties of a chemical engineer.

Chemical engineers spend most of their time thinking about how to use chemicals to create new products.

Educational path to chemical engineering

Engineering jobs in Cape Town are enticing not only because they are interdisciplinary but also because they are less rigid than other types of engineering.

Graduates of all levels of education, from bachelor’s to doctorate, can easily find a job in their field. You must have the qualifications listed below to enter the field as a strong contender.

Earn a chemical engineering degree

After completing the bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering, the students have the necessary background knowledge for starting a career.

Through classroom instruction, hands-on laboratories, and experiential learning opportunities, students gain a foundation in multiple disciplines.

Gain experience through an internship

Due to the breadth of the chemical engineering field, several schools offer internships for students to specialize in.

Students can focus on a variety of engineering fields including petroleum/gas exploration/energy systems, materials/polymers/bioengineering and many more for 12-18 credits.

Earn the required certification

Compared to other engineering fields, which often require a degree and professional certification, chemical engineering is more relaxed and has fewer admissions requirements.

If you are a professional in this field and want to advance your career and join the ranks of respected organizations, you can stand out from the crowd by becoming certified in what you do.

Get an entry-level job

Job hunting after college can be overwhelming. Besides using internet job boards, an internship or co-op is a wonderful way to show potential employers that you have the knowledge and skills needed to do the job.

Also read: 5 top tips to help you find work in a tough job market