The Student Room Group

How much do chemical engineers make 2024?

I applied for chem eng because I love maths so much now and I also really like chemistry (I do not do alevel physics because at the start of sixth form my initial plans were to do medicine)

My cousin who graduated from Manchester 5/6 years ago did a masters in chemical engineering and he’s working in a bank and he’s on £70k+ and it is is increasing still
However, do all chem eng graduates earn this much later in life? Or was my cousin just lucky?

I really want to become wealthy and I hope that my passion for maths will help me. How ?
Reply 1
I graduated with an MEng in ChemE and after 7 months of industry experience, I've entered my 2nd job and now I make £35k/yr + benefits + bonus

I would say that the one thing nobody tells young A-Level students when they choose a degree is how if you study engineering, it is a high probability that you will have to relocate to non-desirable places in order to make these big salaries. For example, senior safety case engineers at Sellafield make a lot of money, but they probably had to relocate to the edge of a country to begin their careers (I had to move quite far from uni myself), and then have to relocate again to Whitehaven or somewhere else in Cumbria to be able to work on-site at Sellafield. So yes, you can make a lot of money, but it requires a lot of sacrifice.

In terms of making buckets of money by working in the finance industry, I honestly am not sure how it works or how easy it is to transition since it is something that never really interested me. Senior engineers in the nuclear industry make good enough money for me, and those kind of jobs are usually protected by a union as well, so you're basically set for life.

Luck plays only one role in a successful career. Skill also plays another part (and I don't mean how good you are at your degree, I mean more about how good you are at writing CVs, cover letters, attending interviews, etc.). But generally, as a rule of thumb, getting progression about your career is about being at the right place at the right time (if you stay at the same company). You can move elsewhere, hence changing the "right place" aspect of that equation, to accelerate your career, but you can only accelerate so much. At the end of day, years of industry experience dictate how much you get paid... and also your level of seniority/responsibility.
Reply 2
Original post by jason0597
I graduated with an MEng in ChemE and after 7 months of industry experience, I've entered my 2nd job and now I make £35k/yr + benefits + bonus
I would say that the one thing nobody tells young A-Level students when they choose a degree is how if you study engineering, it is a high probability that you will have to relocate to non-desirable places in order to make these big salaries. For example, senior safety case engineers at Sellafield make a lot of money, but they probably had to relocate to the edge of a country to begin their careers (I had to move quite far from uni myself), and then have to relocate again to Whitehaven or somewhere else in Cumbria to be able to work on-site at Sellafield. So yes, you can make a lot of money, but it requires a lot of sacrifice.
In terms of making buckets of money by working in the finance industry, I honestly am not sure how it works or how easy it is to transition since it is something that never really interested me. Senior engineers in the nuclear industry make good enough money for me, and those kind of jobs are usually protected by a union as well, so you're basically set for life.
Luck plays only one role in a successful career. Skill also plays another part (and I don't mean how good you are at your degree, I mean more about how good you are at writing CVs, cover letters, attending interviews, etc.). But generally, as a rule of thumb, getting progression about your career is about being at the right place at the right time (if you stay at the same company). You can move elsewhere, hence changing the "right place" aspect of that equation, to accelerate your career, but you can only accelerate so much. At the end of day, years of industry experience dictate how much you get paid... and also your level of seniority/responsibility.
I second on the relocating part here, very much the case for engineering regardless of field (except perhaps if you're a s/w engineer that can work remote). That's especially true as Jason said about energy facilities and manufacturing plants. They normally put them in the middle of nowhere so nobody wants to relocate there, but that can also be an advantage since it means far less competition compared to big city offices where hundreds if not more than 1k graduates apply for a position.
In my current position I hire STEM students for internship and graduate roles and simply because we are so far away from big cities and towns it's an incredible challenge to find good candidates who are also willing to relocate. On a good year I get maybe 10-15 intern candidates total for that recruiting wave and then select 2-3 for the job. Mind you I work for a huge global corporation, you'd think we get more applications but no. Compare that to a London/Birmingham/Manchester and alike location jobs, where they get 1000+ candidates per open role.
Reply 3
Original post by ThatguyAl
I second on the relocating part here, very much the case for engineering regardless of field (except perhaps if you're a s/w engineer that can work remote). That's especially true as Jason said about energy facilities and manufacturing plants. They normally put them in the middle of nowhere so nobody wants to relocate there, but that can also be an advantage since it means far less competition compared to big city offices where hundreds if not more than 1k graduates apply for a position.
In my current position I hire STEM students for internship and graduate roles and simply because we are so far away from big cities and towns it's an incredible challenge to find good candidates who are also willing to relocate. On a good year I get maybe 10-15 intern candidates total for that recruiting wave and then select 2-3 for the job. Mind you I work for a huge global corporation, you'd think we get more applications but no. Compare that to a London/Birmingham/Manchester and alike location jobs, where they get 1000+ candidates per open role.
Hello, I am a non EU international student, and I got an offer from Imperial college london for chemical eng MEng. My concern is about the sponsorship for international students. Would you say finding a skilled worker visa job will be hard after uni with this degree from imperial, or are people exaggerating the advantage of having an imperial degree?
Reply 4
Original post by alkyone02
Hello, I am a non EU international student, and I got an offer from Imperial college london for chemical eng MEng. My concern is about the sponsorship for international students. Would you say finding a skilled worker visa job will be hard after uni with this degree from imperial, or are people exaggerating the advantage of having an imperial degree?
Hiya,
Well, firstly the University where you study and company sponsorship for visa are two different things.
If you want to take a look, see here for the register of currently licensed sponsors (companies) - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/register-of-licensed-sponsors-workers
There's thousands of companies who have the ability to offer such sponsorship, so regardless what University you study in - if you are successful and get a job offer, the company will almost always provide with such sponsorship for you.
So from that perspective, the fact that you are an international student has minimal if any impact on whether you'll be able to find a job or not. It's more about how well you perform on the interviews.

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