As a STEM enthusiast, you can explore multiple avenues of study after stepping into university. Choosing the right one boils down to your area of interest and long-term goals. 

Not everyone wants to join research or work as a six-figure salaried professional. What if you want to start your enterprise after getting a STEM degree? Chemistry makes the perfect choice for your career aspirations.

Statistics show that a total of 21,238 degrees in chemistry were awarded in the US in 2021. Chemists in the country earn a median salary of $111,355 per year, while 1.12 million of them are in the workforce. Beyond these numbers, many young graduates enter the entrepreneurial landscape after completing their degrees.

The good thing is that there are several alternatives for aspiring business owners looking to try their luck after chemistry education at the university. Here are a few sectors you can consider exploring:

Custom Chemical Manufacturing

Manufacturing is the most common industry employing chemists, with a 22% share of the total. Why not consider launching a manufacturing startup instead of working in one? With an in-depth knowledge of concepts, from the hydrosulfuric acid formula to the polymer molding process, you can build a strong foundation for success in the industry.

Custom chemical manufacturing involves developing unique formulations for specific applications like specialty chemicals, cosmetics, skincare products, and pharmaceuticals. You can explore the demand in the market to pick and develop a saleable product.

According to Proprep, STEM students should dig deep into concepts through bite-sized videos that offer good clarity of concepts. Going the extra mile with chemistry studies during your degree gives you an edge once you join the workforce or start your business.

Chemical Consultancy Services

Manufacturing is a capital-intensive business vertical, making it beyond reach for people without enough funds. Starting a chemical consulting services business is an excellent idea if you want to start small with minimal funding and less hassle. Did you know that the consulting service market is expected to cross the $ 321.52 billion mark in 2023? That spells a lot of scope for entrepreneurs.

You can offer consulting services to industries requiring chemical analysis, regulatory compliance, and quality control. Business owners in the chemical sector often lack the essential technical skills to optimize their processes. Your advice can be vital to troubleshoot issues and ensure adherence to safety and environmental standards.

Chemical Safety Training

Chemical safety training is a specialized field for consulting service providers. The chemical manufacturing industry is inherently risky as these organizations handle hazardous materials and engage in dangerous processes. Process safety incidents can result in losses worth millions, from injuries to fatalities, facility damage, environmental impacts, compliance penalties, downtime, and lost production.

Companies can address these risks and prevent such losses by seeking expert advice. Young chemistry graduates can leverage the business opportunity to provide valuable insights into safe manufacturing processes. These include handling, storage, and disposal of hazardous chemicals. 

Laboratory Equipment Sales

Chemistry graduates with a penchant for sales can venture into the market for laboratory equipment and supplies. These include lab tools, consumables, and chemicals. The market segment has witnessed impressive growth over the years, from $ 9.5 million in 2019 to a projected $ 17.7 billion by 2024.

The demand is also high, with research labs, industrial laboratories, and academic institutions requiring these products. You may consider setting up a manufacturing unit or engaging only in sales, according to your investment potential and business goals. Either way, there are plenty of opportunities to thrive in the target markets.

Environmental Remediation Services

Environmental remediation and pollution control are some other out-of-the-box business ideas for young chemistry graduates. Since this is a relatively new domain, you have better chances of making it big due to less competition. Statistics show that the market was worth a whopping $ 109.3 billion in 2022, indicating a lucrative business opportunity.

You can start small without a massive investment. All you have to do is sell your knowledge of chemistry to suggest innovative solutions to clean up contaminated sites, reduce emissions, and treat wastewater. With a growing attention to environmental improvement, you will never fall short of business in this industry.


Young chemistry graduates have an impressive range of business opportunities to tap into. The good thing is that not all these options require hefty startup investments. You can start small and leverage your expertise in the core chemistry concepts. Additionally, you can follow your passion while developing skills in the fields of production, sales, or consulting according to your interests.