From the inbox (redacted for privacy):
I was wondering if you have any advice on getting OUT of Chemistry? After [3-6 years] of industry after grad school [with a master's] I have found I liked coding & analyzing data a lot more than doing R&D and the issues that come with it in an industrial setting.
I was just wondering if you know a lot of people who HAVE transitioned to data science/data analytics, so I can manage my expectations on if I should expect a paycut, how long the process takes, how much technical experience people had when they left, etc. [redacted]
A lot of my technical skills are self-taught and not on-the-job experience. I don't think my career path is unheard of, I was just wondering if you have any advice coming from an R&D synthetic chemist perspective that might help me get to an interview.
For past data science questions, here's an old post.
I don't have much expertise in this, and so I will leave it to the commenters. I think that what a person needs to demonstrate interest in moving to a new field is the basic educational background (which probably can be made clear with some kind of programming/coding certificate) combined with sufficient on-the-job/off-the-job experience in the field to the point that you've demonstrated some kind of level of understanding.
Readers, I'm genuinely not familiar with this, so do you have any thoughts?
I think Aurora Ginzburg seems to have made this career transition. She and Tony at the polymerist had an article: https://polymerist.substack.com/p/intentionally-directing-a-careerReplyDelete
Pay CUT moving to data science?? Not in my country...ReplyDelete
"Data science" is very broad so it's hard to tell. Would scientific computing for chemistry/pharma, or clinical data analysis, or digitization in a chemistry department work? That could be an "in" without having to restart your career. It could also be a perfect match...
I successfully moved out of chemistry, but into process engineering, not data science. This was achieved by applying to jobs at CDMO's as they're almost always willing to take a chance on "alternative" people vs big pharma. I feel like I did a pretty good job relating past experiences to the roles and responsibilities of the PE role. After around 1.5 years (which at a CDMO is more like 3+ years of experience at a big pharma), I took a chance on applying to big pharma PE jobs and landed one.ReplyDelete
I'm not sure if CDMO's hire data scientists but that may be a decent approach. In my experience though, CDMO's are usually very lean so you may need to be willing to make a sacrifice in work/life balance for a period of time. Or perhaps you're just ultra productive and can do everything required of you in a very lean atmosphere.