Is chemical engineering an acceptable major for pharmaceutical career?

Jul 23, 2016
3
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
I'm interested in going into the pharmaceutical industry and work in a pharmaceutical company for either research or quality assurance or eventually regulatory affairs. I am NOT interested in going into a pharmacy school and getting a doctor of pharmacy degree and then going into retail. I was wondering if a major in chemical engineering is enough to be able to land a research or quality assurance job at a pharmaceutical company and what graduate degrees I should get if I want to do so. I want to get a major in chemical engineering instead of something with pharmaceutical sciences since if I'm not interested in a pharmaceutical career down the road then I am not screwed and have other options with a chemical eng. degree.
 

Wickett

7+ Year Member
Mar 28, 2012
342
377
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Pharmacist
I'm interested in going into the pharmaceutical industry and work in a pharmaceutical company for either research or quality assurance or eventually regulatory affairs. I am NOT interested in going into a pharmacy school and getting a doctor of pharmacy degree and then going into retail. I was wondering if a major in chemical engineering is enough to be able to land a research or quality assurance job at a pharmaceutical company and what graduate degrees I should get if I want to do so. I want to get a major in chemical engineering instead of something with pharmaceutical sciences since if I'm not interested in a pharmaceutical career down the road then I am not screwed and have other options with a chemical eng. degree.
This seems more like a question for an advisor/dept head/someone in industry. Scratching my head why you would ask a pharmacist forum.
 
Jul 21, 2016
8
1
Status
Pre-Pharmacy
I mean, it's possible that you could land a job doing basic research, but I would imagine that they'll make you get at least a master's in chemical engineering. Note, my thoughts on this only come from having attended a primarily engineering-based college and seeing what jobs my friends have gotten, but it's like Wickett says; you'll probably need to ask an advisor or industry insider.
 
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DrDrugs2012

5+ Year Member
Feb 8, 2011
416
87
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Yes, a degree in chemical engineering is a very good way to land in development or production phases. You will want to focus on biologic reactors and whatnot since biologic is the future of pharmaceuticals. Alternatively, if you focus on small molecule chemistry, your options open up considerably beyond pharmaceuticals.

Now regulatory will take anyone from research or developmental backgrounds with a varied work history. But one is unlikely to land in regulatory (in a substantial role with major responsibility) initially without experience in the research or manufacturing aspect as you simply would not know what or how to communicate to the FDA.
 
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