Have a nagging curiosity about the living things that surrounds us? Do you want to explore more on how these living things play a vital role in the environment and on human beings? Well, you are on the right page of discovering your potential job – to be a Biochemist.
Biochemist and its Nature of Work
A Biochemist in its basic form is a scientist who focuses on the study of the chemistry of living things. Their work consists of studying complicated chemical reactions and combinations happening in reproduction, growth, heredity, and metabolism. A biochemist also does basic research that is centered on expounding scientific knowledge about the chemistry of living things.
Classifications of a Biochemist
- Molecular Biochemist
A molecular biochemist is someone who works in the field of medicine. Their study is mainly focused on bacteria, viruses, and other organisms to have a better understanding of the chemical basis of life. Moreover, they likewise determine the various effects of chemicals such as a drug on medical conditions like obesity, cancer, or aging.
- Biochemists in Nutrition
The work of biochemist here is analyzing the food products for them to measure the proteins, carbohydrates, minerals, and vitamins they contain. Furthermore, they are conducting research about the effects of cooking or freezing and they also compute for the caloric value of foods.
Some biochemists are working for universities and colleges where they have a teaching profession or doing research. Most of the biochemists, however, are working in private agencies or firms like drug companies, breweries, and manufacturers. Others are employed for government agencies and research centers while few biochemists work as consultants who advise the industry and government.
Education and Training
Secondary school students who have a strong interest to become a biochemist should cultivate their experience and knowledge in science-related work by taking up subjects like biology, physics, English, mathematics, chemistry, and foreign language. Furthermore, they should attend in science fairs, joining science clubs, and participating in summer programs which are sponsored by the National Science Foundation.
To fully become a biologist, you need to obtain a doctoral degree first in which you will major in biochemistry, chemistry, or biology as an undergraduate and then you may continue with the specialized training in biochemistry in a graduate school. Those who have obtained a bachelor’s degree are employed either as technicians or research assistants and they commonly do analysis and routine testing, however, they have limited opportunities for advancement. On the other hand, those who have obtained a master’s degree in biochemistry are employed in the work of applied research and also teaching profession.
Work Condition and Salary of a Biochemist
The working environment of a biochemist is very conducive as they are working in a well-lighted and fully equipped laboratory. Sometimes, they also spend most of their time in classrooms and offices. Their work lasts at least 40 hours a week or more. It is also a necessity that a biochemist allots time in reading and studying to keep up with the latest findings of other scientists that are relevant to their own work.
The salary is very much dependent on the education and experience of the biochemist and also the location and type of job. The annual income of a biochemist is roughly about $70,000 way back in 2004. There are also benefits which includes vacations and holidays, pension plans, and health insurance.
Knowing every single detail of being a biochemist helps you decide whether to pursue it or venture to another field. Just keep in mind that whatever you are dreaming to attain, you should put a lot of passion in it for you to be successful.