A career as a chem-lab tech is within reach at CFCC
Have you ever wanted to be part of the discovery team that analyzes new lifesaving medicines for safety and effectiveness? Perhaps you’d like to run tests on DNA samples to help law enforcement catch criminals. Or maybe you’d like to test environmental samples to identify hazardous chemicals in the water or the quality of the soil.
If any of these scenarios sound interesting to you, the Chemical Technology program may be right for you.
The Role of a Chemical Technician
Chemical technicians assist chemists, scientists, and researchers in analyzing, testing, and experimenting with chemical products.
Typical duties include:
- Monitor chemical processes and test the quality of products to make sure that they meet standards and specifications
- Set up and maintain laboratory instruments and equipment
- Troubleshoot production problems or malfunctioning instruments
- Prepare chemical solutions
- Conduct, compile and interpret results of chemical and physical experiments, tests, and analyses for a variety of purposes, including research and development
- Prepare technical reports, graphs, and charts, and give presentations that summarize their results
The role of the chemical technician is crucial to the accurate evaluation of consumer products such as prescription and over-the-counter medicines, foods, beverages, lotions, and makeup. Any product you purchase that you may eat or drink, or that may come in contact with your skin has been through an extensive process by a chemical technician.
They also help scientists conduct laboratory tests and experiments for research and development. Technicians provide an essential aspect of compliance and safety in the laboratory and manufacturing industries.
Applied Learning, Hands-On Training
CFCC’s Chemical Technology program trains students to work in laboratories across the nation. In two years, CFCC students reach hundreds of lab hours in a state-of-the-art learning environment. That’s approximately four times the amount of lab hours completed in half the time of most programs.
What’s more? A grant from the National Science Foundation adds more value to the program. The grant’s funds prompted a partnership and internship program with the local pharmaceutical company, Quality Chemical Labs (QCL).
This year, eight chem-tech students serve as interns at QCL. These students receive training from various leaders at QCL and $16.00 per hour for their work and commitment. Through the paid internship, students earn college credit toward their degree and the opportunity to apply their studies to real-lab scenarios. Further, after graduation, these students have the potential to become experienced employees with the company.
QCL anticipates doubling its workforce over the next few years. And they aren’t the only ones. The Bureau projects over 7,500 openings each year over the next decade. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, chemical technicians earn a median of $49,820 per year.
For students who wish to continue their education, CFCC’s Chemical Technology program is a great springboard for transfer to a 4-year university. Transfer students enter as juniors to pursue a bachelor’s degree in chemistry.