Best Jobs For Science Majors In 2018

Studying science in college can lead to a variety of interesting jobs. We’ve listed some of the highest paying careers for science majors.

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Rank 
Job Title 
Most Common Major 
% Workers with Major 
Mid-Career Pay
 
Median salary for alumni with 10+ years experience
% High Job Meaning
 
% alumni who say their work makes the world a better place
1Optical EngineerPhysics46%$95,300N/A

1Optical Engineer
Most Common MajorPhysics
% Workers with Major46%
Mid-Career Pay$95,300
% High Job MeaningN/A
2GeophysicistGeophysics68%$90,100N/A

2Geophysicist
Most Common MajorGeophysics
% Workers with Major68%
Mid-Career Pay$90,100
% High Job MeaningN/A
3Product Development ScientistChemistry42%$75,20050%

3Product Development Scientist
Most Common MajorChemistry
% Workers with Major42%
Mid-Career Pay$75,200
% High Job Meaning50%
4Research ScientistBiology30%$72,40075%

4Research Scientist
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major30%
Mid-Career Pay$72,400
% High Job Meaning75%
5Laboratory ManagerBiology41%$69,90069%

5Laboratory Manager
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major41%
Mid-Career Pay$69,900
% High Job Meaning69%
6HydrogeologistGeology85%$68,000N/A

6Hydrogeologist
Most Common MajorGeology
% Workers with Major85%
Mid-Career Pay$68,000
% High Job MeaningN/A
7Staff ScientistBiology25%$67,30059%

7Staff Scientist
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major25%
Mid-Career Pay$67,300
% High Job Meaning59%
8GeologistGeology86%$64,50058%

8Geologist
Most Common MajorGeology
% Workers with Major86%
Mid-Career Pay$64,500
% High Job Meaning58%
9Project GeologistGeology93%$62,900N/A

9Project Geologist
Most Common MajorGeology
% Workers with Major93%
Mid-Career Pay$62,900
% High Job MeaningN/A
10Research ChemistChemistry77%$62,30030%

10Research Chemist
Most Common MajorChemistry
% Workers with Major77%
Mid-Career Pay$62,300
% High Job Meaning30%
11Quality Control AnalystBiology43%$62,20059%

11Quality Control Analyst
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major43%
Mid-Career Pay$62,200
% High Job Meaning59%
12Research Associate, BiotechnologyBiology29%$62,10074%

12Research Associate, Biotechnology
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major29%
Mid-Career Pay$62,100
% High Job Meaning74%
13Manufacturing AssociateBiology32%$61,60076%

13Manufacturing Associate
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major32%
Mid-Career Pay$61,600
% High Job Meaning76%
14MeteorologistMeteorology63%$59,10058%

14Meteorologist
Most Common MajorMeteorology
% Workers with Major63%
Mid-Career Pay$59,100
% High Job Meaning58%
15Environmental GeologistGeology85%$58,80050%

15Environmental Geologist
Most Common MajorGeology
% Workers with Major85%
Mid-Career Pay$58,800
% High Job Meaning50%
16BiologistBiology57%$58,40063%

16Biologist
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major57%
Mid-Career Pay$58,400
% High Job Meaning63%
17Quality Control (QC) ChemistChemistry60%$58,30040%

17Quality Control (QC) Chemist
Most Common MajorChemistry
% Workers with Major60%
Mid-Career Pay$58,300
% High Job Meaning40%
18ChemistChemistry68%$57,30046%

18Chemist
Most Common MajorChemistry
% Workers with Major68%
Mid-Career Pay$57,300
% High Job Meaning46%
19Forensic ScientistBiology41%$56,500N/A

19Forensic Scientist
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major41%
Mid-Career Pay$56,500
% High Job MeaningN/A
20MicrobiologistBiology43%$55,60057%

20Microbiologist
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major43%
Mid-Career Pay$55,600
% High Job Meaning57%
21Marine BiologistMarine Biology59%$54,200N/A

21Marine Biologist
Most Common MajorMarine Biology
% Workers with Major59%
Mid-Career Pay$54,200
% High Job MeaningN/A
22Research Associate, Molecular BiologyBiology39%$52,60063%

22Research Associate, Molecular Biology
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major39%
Mid-Career Pay$52,600
% High Job Meaning63%
23Lab TechnologistBiology50%$52,50063%

23Lab Technologist
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major50%
Mid-Career Pay$52,500
% High Job Meaning63%
24Research and Development (R&D) Lab TechnicianBiology35%$47,20039%

24Research and Development (R&D) Lab Technician
Most Common MajorBiology
% Workers with Major35%
Mid-Career Pay$47,200
% High Job Meaning39%
25Chemical Laboratory TechnicianChemistry50%$46,50029%

25Chemical Laboratory Technician
Most Common MajorChemistry
% Workers with Major50%
Mid-Career Pay$46,500
% High Job Meaning29%
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Those with an innate sense of curiosity and discovery would do well in this field. Some of the best careers in the sciences offer the potential for high incomes. However, the work can also be interesting and rewarding. In spite of what you might think, you’re not doomed to be stuck in a lab for hours on end, mindlessly waiting for experiments to render. Just as an example, about 12 percent of quality assurance directors held a biology degree. Geology is another lucrative bachelor’s degree that offers many high-paying jobs, and the potential to work outdoors.

Physical and Life Science Disciplines

There are a number of related disciplines and areas of focus within the physical and life sciences. Some of these include astronomy, biology, chemistry, clinical laboratory science, earth science, geology, physics and more. These can all lead to intellectually challenging and innovative careers.

Careers For Science Majors

Optical Engineer – Mid-Career Salary: $95,300

Optical engineers are involved in planning and creating of optical designs and products related to light refraction, reflection and color measurement systems. They help create everything from microscopes to telescopes, cameras to lasers, and everything between. They have strong analytical and research skills.

Geophysicist – Mid-Career Salary: $90,100

Geophysicists are integral members of a geoscience team. They study how the electrical, gravitational, magnetic and seismic forces affect planets such as the earth and the atmosphere. Many are employed by the oil and gas industry to help discover new sources of energy. While others may conduct environmental impact studies to determine if locations are suitable for construction projects.

Product Development ScientistMid-Career Salary: $72,200

Product development scientists work in a variety of industries. Generally, they are experts in available technologies, materials, procedures, and research project management. They may also use market research and competitive analyses to design products and research projects.

There are many other interesting and lucrative science jobs, such as research engineers, senior product development scientists, and clinical project managers.


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