How to Make Money with a Biochemistry Degree (26 Best Paying Jobs)

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by Erin Schollaert

Updated

Biochemistry degrees are quickly becoming one of the most sought-after degrees when hiring.

This pushes many to pursue this degree without knowing how to make money with a biochemistry degree.

Fortunately, not only is there a large assortment of jobs to pick from so you’ll never be bored, but 95% of graduates also find jobs with a biochemistry degree soon after graduation.

These are 26 of the highest-paying jobs you can nab with this degree!

26. Analytical Chemist

analytical-chemist

This job can be extremely interesting to those who are passionate about solving problems and breaking down equations.

An analytical chemist performs experiments to discover the chemical components of a substance through samples.

If you have a knack for thinking analytically, this is an excellent way to utilize that high income skill.

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Many positions require previous work experience as a chemist, but there’s still plenty of work available for college graduates wanting to break into the field.

Like academic researchers, your research may still get published, but it’s usually toxicology, forensic, or quality control organizations that hire for this role.

Average Yearly Salary: $57,000 (Payscale)

25. Scientific Laboratory Technician

A scientific laboratory technician works with complex systems and performs highly technical diagnostic or mechanical tests to ensure the expected results.

These results are often replicated several times to ensure that the findings are solid and reliable. In addition, they may replicate these tests for other technicians to ensure they get the same results.

A large part of this job is writing your findings, which may then be published or kept inside the company depending on who you work with.

Many lab techs also report this is one of the best jobs for people with anxiety.

Average Yearly Salary: $57,000 (Zippia) 

24. Forensic Scientist

If you are interested in helping solve crimes and working in forensics, being a forensic scientist can be one of the highest paying biochemistry jobs.

With this job, you’ll work with law enforcement to test and analyze any evidence and help investigate crimes.

In addition, you’ll work with crime scene investigators to help close cases and aid victims in catching the criminals.

Forensic scientists are also popular jobs for psychology majors.

Average Yearly Salary: $58,000 (Payscale) 

23. Health and Safety Inspector

Also known as an occupational health and safety technician, someone working this job examines workplace practices and spaces to ensure they’re following the law for what should be safe and sanitary for employees.

Although this job doesn’t require much testing or lab work, it’s very time intensive and requires a lot of human interaction.

Average Yearly Salary: $61,000 (Zippia) 

22. Biotechnologist

biotechnologist

A biotechnologist uses biology in a practical way, like aiding in the production of protein drugs or antibodies.

They manipulate and work with the biological system to invent new processes or products in the medical field. Although this is a general line of work, it’s the main job that people with biochemistry degrees go after.

Because of its popularity, it’s a good idea to attempt to specialize in another part of biochemistry so that your resume and education stand out against those of your peers.

Average Yearly Salary: $62,000(Zippia)

21. Academic Researcher

The average academic researcher conducts studies into many aspects of life, with their goal being to learn more about the subject.

They publish papers on their work in peer-reviewed journals and may publish books about their work.

It’s also a fantastic side job for nurses who love academia and want some extra income.

This doesn’t require you to have a Ph.D., but those with more than a bachelors usually get paid more and have their papers more highly regarded—many like that their knowledge gets to educate for generations to come with this job.

Average Yearly Salary: $64,000 (Zip Recruiter)

20. Food Scientist

food-scientist

Any biochemistry graduate working as a food scientist will provide information on the chemical changes occurring in foods, like the reaction of enzymes and how calories affect our bodies.

Food scientists positions can be competitive, so it’s important to ensure you are avoiding the common reasons why people don’t get the job.

These professionals may also work to ensure the food development and processing is done to keep the food safe and healthy.

Average Yearly Salary: $66,000 (Payscale)

19. College Professor

Much like any other professor, your main goal as a college professor for biochemistry will focus on educating and testing students.

However, as a biochemistry professor, there’s more focus on doing labs, replicating results, and creating projects for your students to complete.

This is extremely rewarding and can give you the chance to make an impact on future professionals.

Average Yearly Salary: $68,000 (Glassdoor)

18. Clinical Scientist for Biochemistry

As a clinical scientist, you can analyze blood, urine, and other bodily fluids to manage and diagnose diseases in patients.

This is done by validating, or producing, the results of biochemical and chemical analyses.

You’re often lab-based, so most of your time is spent running or checking the results and never having to be face to face with patients.

Average Yearly Salary: $71,000 (Zip Recruiter) 

17. Clinical Lab Scientist

Although this job goes under many names, including a medical lab scientist, the main goal of these professionals is to analyze many specimens from biological sources.

This could mean sampling tissue for evidence of cancer or running high volumes of other scientific test and reporting their findings to the doctors that requested it.

There’s a lot of variety in this job, so you don’t have to worry about getting bored in it.

Average Yearly Salary: $82,000 (Zip Recruiter) 

16. Neuroscientist

Neuroscientist

With their main focus on studying and researching the nervous system, neuroscientists investigate the brain and its impact on cognitive functions and behavior.

It’s vital to learn why people have neurological, neurodevelopmental, and psychiatric disorders and find ways to help these patients.

Their studies consist of the brain, spinal cord, and nerve cells.

Average Yearly Salary: $84,000 (onlinepsychologydegree.com)

15. Toxicologist

The average toxicologist is a scientist who has a solid understanding of biology and chemistry and works with many chemicals and substances to discover if they’re harmful to humans and other living organisms.

These professionals can also test to ensure whether or not something is detrimental to its environment.

Average Yearly Salary: $85,000 (Payscale) 

14. Medical Lab Tech

The average medical lab technician works on samples from patients, from bodily fluids to tissue samples, recording whether their findings are normal or may point towards a disease or illness.

Then, although they analyze the samples and leave their conclusions, they don’t make the diagnoses and instead simply explain what the testing tells them.

Average Yearly Salary: $86,000 (Biomedical Equipment Tech Wiki) 

13. Medicinal Chemist

A medicinal chemist researches chemical compounds and creates some for use as medicine.

Not only do they isolate natural healing agents, but they also develop and test artificial ones, ensuring that if there’s any mix, they’re safe to use.

Professionals filling this role-play a vital role in the pharmaceutical industry and are quickly snatched up once they graduate.

Average Yearly Salary: $90,000 (Payscale) 

12. Environmental Engineer

environmental-engineer

Double majoring in environmental engineering and biochemistry allows you to aid the environment and people’s health.

The main focuses are pollution control and health risks, virus creation, and slow their spread.

This is a job that’s been very visible in public for the last couple of years because of Covid-19.

Average Yearly Salary: $94,000 (US News) 

11. Nanotechnologist

This is a very important job that works to keep most people safe and our breathing air clean.

A Nanotechnologist tests for pollutants and creates powders to enrich foods and drugs. In addition, they can manipulate proteins, cells, and other chemicals within the body.

This is a high-stress job and requires an immense amount of focus with a keen eye for detail.

Average Yearly Salary: $95,000 (NNCI)

10. Clinical Research Associate

Often referred to as a CRA, a clinical research associate performs medical research and runs trials intending to test drugs for whichever company or organization they work for.

These associates conduct regular site visits to ensure that the record-keeping and progress on site are well maintained and that the trial is going smoothly.

Average Yearly Salary: $95,156 (Indeed) 

9. Biochemical Engineer

Biochemical engineers focus on conducting studies on cell structures, viruses, proteins, or other biological substances.

This is often to create products for biological waste treatment or bioremediation but can be applied to a wide swath of different uses that all aim to help improve the general public’s health.

This is a well-paying job and only requires a bachelor’s degree for most work. However, if you decide to work for a government agency, they often need a full Ph.D.

Average Yearly Salary: $99,000 (Career Explorer) 

8. Pharmacologist

A pharmacologist creates, identifies, and tests drugs to aid in the curing, treatment, and prevention of diseases.

The drug research and testing includes specimens like animals and plants, and also is used on humans.

This ensures that drugs and medicine are safe for mass use and will catch issues before reaching the consumers’ hands.

Average Yearly Salary: $102,000 (Indeed) 

7. Biomedical Engineer

biomedical-engineer

Although similar to biochemical engineers, Biomedical engineers focus more on advances in technology and medicine to develop new devices and equipment for the medical field.

For example, they may design computer simulations to test medical therapy or invent new machinery to aid limb replacement or augmentation.

This is a highly sought-after employee type, so those who get the degrees needed for this are quickly snatched up after they graduate.

Average Yearly Salary: $118,000 (Biospace) 

6. Patent Examiner

Patent examiner’s job is to research whether an invention has been created, when it’s been put to use, who owns the rights to use it, and whether any differences between two designs are enough to call them unique.

With biochemistry, this means looking at inventions and innovations in the medical field.

Although there’s no guarantee you’ll see many new designs, it can be exciting to see what cutting-edge ideas are being pushed.

Average Yearly Salary: $124,000 (Federal Pay) 

5. Science Writer

Science writers have a vital job to ensure that scientific information makes its way from the labs and scientists out to the general public.

This role is equal parts studying and translating to ensure that the data is correct and easy to digest.

For this role, you’ll need a history of chemistry, biology, and biomedical research.

Although you can write for anything from medical companies, government agencies, and nonprofits, you should pick one field to build your portfolio on.

Average Yearly Salary: $127,000 (Zippia) 

4. Petroleum Engineer

Since most biofuels are often combined with petroleum fuel, there’s a large push for petroleum engineers to have a background in biochemistry.

Although this will require a lot more school beyond your biochemistry degree, this type of employee is highly sought after and capable of generating a lot of income.

Average Yearly Salary: $137,000 (US News) 

3. Research Scientist for Life Sciences

There’s a large range of employers for those who work in this specialty. This can range from environmental organizations, government labs, specialist research organizations, and colleges and universities.

This gives you a large range for researching, designing, and studying information from experiments, trials, and lab-based investigations.

At face value, it can seem like a lot to take on, but it’s highly paid to compensate for the workload.

Average Yearly Salary: $138,000 (Salary.com) 

2. Physician Associate

Physician associates aid doctors in the management and diagnosis of patients.

There’s a large range of where you may work with this job, from a hospital to a general surgery office, but you’ll be in direct contact with patients for most of this work.

As trusted healthcare workers, you’ll be in charge of ensuring that patients are both healthy and safe and that their treatment is in their best interests.

Average Yearly Salary: $162,000 (Zip Recruiter) 

1. Medical Science Liaison

This is the highest-paying job on this list! At almost $170,000, this role wears many hats to help the companies or organizations they work for.

A medical science liaison concentrates on a specific therapeutic area or disease state to discuss how certain medications, therapies, and treatments will work against it.

Although they’re extremely specific in their studies, they’re also highly sought after by many companies.

Average Yearly Salary: $169,000 (Indeed) 

Conclusion

Whether you’re more interested in a four-year degree where you can get into the workforce as soon as possible, or you want to boost your pay with a master’s degree: majoring in biochemistry gives you the best chance at good wages!

So look around for which line of work interests you the most, and get a degree that will pay for itself within just a few years!

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About the Author

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Erin is a business teacher and mother of three. When she’s not in the classroom or fulfilling her obligations as an A+ hockey and lacrosse mom, she’s working on her latest article.