Professional Development


2017 AIChE Salary Survey: Overview

Salary Survey
Are you working in the right industry to make the most out of your chemical engineering degree? Ever wonder if other chemical engineers with the same experience level get paid more than you? Check out the results of AIChE’s biennial salary survey to find out which industry pays the most, how your salary stacks up to those of your peers, and the difference in salary between genders. Other factors explored in this year’s survey results include age, job function, supervisory responsibilities, and geographical location. Also, check out the benefits and health insurance packages being offered to chemical engineers.

Planning and Conducting Effective Performance Appraisals

Archived Webinar
Aug 5, 2015
Performance appraisals are an essential part of any supervisor’s position whether they have one or many direct reports. However, most managers dread the thought of conducting formal (often annual) performance appraisals. In this webinar, we review the essential elements in preparing and conducting...

Career Corner: Should You Get an MBA?

Career Corner
Loraine Kasprzak
In the April 2016 column, I wrote about transitioning to a career in sales engineering if you are drawn to the business side of chemical engineering. But what if you aspire to a senior management role or want to combine your technical smarts with...

Charlene Wall-Warren’s First Job

February 2, 2011

There’s no such thing as starting at the top for most people. Learn how some of today’s prominent chemical engineers got their start in the working world in this weekly series of personal profiles. This week, we feature AIChE board member Charlene Wall-Warren.

What is SIOC?

December 2, 2011

AIChE is organized into three “operating councils” that manage many of the activities of AIChE. The Societal Impact Operating Council (SIOC) is the one of these that has primary responsibility for the way that the Institute relates to the world beyond AIChE.

AIChE Apprentices: An Opportunity to Make a Difference

May 18, 2012

This summer, AIChE is launching a new program to empower young professionals to affect the direction of the chemical engineering profession. It will provide opportunities in advocacy/policy work, service projects in the developing world, outreach, and more. Read on for more details.

Building a Leadership Portfolio

February 17, 2014

Networking is a great way to build your resume and professional contacts, and you can use it to develop leadership opportunities.

The Magnificent Seven: Tips for Successful Team Management

October 3, 2011

Many tasks are solved by teams, but they can either work together harmoniously with great results, or cause real headaches and produce very little. By keeping seven key tips in mind, you can keep your team on track to success.

Students Find Amazon Fungus That Binges on Petrochemical Junkfood

February 14, 2012

Each year 16 students sign up for the Yale rainforest lab, which features a two-week expedition during spring break, followed by intensive research analyzing hundreds of samples brought back from the headwaters of the Amazon. This year, one of the samples has shown potential for landfill cleanup, given its appetite for polyurethane.

ChemEs and Career Transitions

October 25, 2012

Many ChemEs go through one or more career transitions and need different skills or expertise in each new position. Have you made a career transition? I want to hear about it.

Meet Jon Haughton — Featured YP for April

April 9, 2013

Meet Jon Haughton, this month's Featured YP, who is a graduate of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a wide range of interests and some smart advice for other young chemical engineers and students.

Lessons on Leading Change

June 6, 2014

What type of leader are you, and what are your strongest abilities? Learning to lead means understanding where your strengths as a leader lie so you can also learn to manage your weaknesses.

Book Review: Navigating Strategic Decisions

May 4, 2015

Navigating Strategic Decisions: The Power of Sound Analysis and Forecasting by John E. Triantis.  CRC Press, 2013.  405 + xxix pages.  US$104.95 (hard cover).

Young Professional-Fellows Mentoring Pilot Discussion Topics

December 31, 2010

Over the course of the YP-Fellows mentoring pilot program (June 2010 to December 2010), three discussion topics were offered to pairs in order to stimulate conversation and promote dialogue. David Wishnick and I selected three topics that can be represented generally as: 1) Networking 2) Ethics, and 3) “When mentoring goes bad,” each utilizing a respective publication as a center piece.

The Interview

June 9, 2011

Ah, the interview process. For many, it's a cause of nervous nail-biting and sleepless nights, but it doesn't have to be that way. Here's a recent (2010) graduate's guide to landing that elusive job.

How ChE Prepared Me for Business (and How It Didn’t): Sales

November 15, 2011

We are always selling. Vendors sell goods, consultants sell advice, politicians sell themselves, demonstrators who occupy Wall Street sell their cause, entrepreneurs sell new concepts, artists sell designs, and even parents sell their standards. Regardless of the way you describe it, teaching, pitching, proposing, convincing – sales is about getting another person to do something and we all need to know how to do sales well to get things done.

What’s the State of Chemical Engineering Employment in 2013?

June 6, 2013

We have all heard reports that there is a high demand for chemical engineers, but as is usually the case, the headlines don't always match individuals' experiences. See what other chemical engineers have to say about employment prospects.

Is a Nontraditional ChemE Career for You?

September 15, 2015
A chemical engineering degree makes you more than ready for a wide variety of careers, including those that are usually considered nontraditional.

Closing Chemical Engineering's Leadership Gender Gap

September 30, 2016

I’m always surprised when I attend a chemical industry event and the audience is predominantly male, or when I’m looking for CEOs to interview for CEP’s Leadership Q&A column and find mostly me

Three Wikipedias?

February 21, 2011

It really bothers me when I see engineering students working on homework that rely upon computer-based references for equations.

Mentoring: Turn Aspirations into Results

January 16, 2012

Our AIChE Fellows/Young Professionals Mentoring Pilot Program was a great success last year, thanks to the Fellows and Young Professionals who participated, and we hope to change aspirations into results for a whole new group of participants this year. We will begin a second round of the Fellows/Young Professionals Mentoring Program in February 2012 and hope that you will take part.

Today's Students, Tomorrow's Clean Tech Leaders

March 26, 2013

Have chemical engineering programs become divorced from the world and people they serve? One program has a new approach to focusing chemical engineering students on the world's challenges.

Becoming a Leader

August 5, 2013

Loraine Kasprzak, CMC, of CEP magazine talks to senior executive coach Mike Martorella to learn how engineers can become successful leaders.

Your First Year as a Manager

May 1, 2014

If you are considering or have been offered a management position, how are things going to change for you? What is that first year going to be like? Dr. Jonathan Worstell outlined some answers to these questions and a framework for the transition of the new manager.

Talking to Your Bo$$: Operating Costs

November 29, 2010

If you're a chemical engineer and want to discuss operating costs intelligently with your boss, you'll need to understand a number of financial concepts, including gross margin, cost of goods, depreciation, allocation, and capital investment.

When the Dream Job Doesn't Appear

May 16, 2013

Didn't find your dream job right out of college? Or looking for a job while still in school? Hear how one chemical engineer is tackling the job search and learn from his experience on the job hunt.

A Grad Student’s Right Decision

November 18, 2013

Learn how one grad student in biological engineering has increased his professional reach and enriched his career as a volunteer.

Women in Chemical Technology: Takara Scott

September 30, 2014

Takara Scott says that when other kids wanted to play with Barbies and watch Power Rangers, she wanted to play with a microscope and watch science documentaries.

Gaining Acceptance as a New Supervisor

February 3, 2011

Part 6 in the series "Tools and Tips for Successful Management and Leadership." So how exactly do you go about gaining acceptance once you've managed to land that new management position? A lot will ride on it. Success will now be a function of your group/team’s output and performance, not just your own. Your ability to gain the acceptance of your team and get over any speed bumps quickly will be a function of how you approach this initial phase of your new position, and will dictate the time it takes to get them to a high level of productivity.

Finding the Right Career in Chemical Engineering

February 28, 2013

Not sure where your place is in the world of chemical engineering? Robert Szczesniak wasn't sure either, but he found a great fit. Today, he travels the world working on different projects as a chemical engineer. He describes the path – which wasn't always so direct – and gives advice for finding a position that will be a good fit for you.

Environmental Engineer Turns Brewmaster

June 26, 2013

Cody Martin, who says his beer is "made in Texas by Texans," was working as an environmental engineer when he became obsessed with becoming a brewmaster.

The Performance Appraisal System: Part 2 of Effective Employee Performance Management

October 27, 2010

A formal Performance Appraisal System is a necessity in a growing and successful business or organization. It demonstrates a consistency of understanding and formal communication of what is expected, what is applauded, and what is not acceptable. Everyone is on the same page, senior management, yourself, and the appraised employee.

Live From AIChE Spring Meeting – Local Section Leadership and Networking

March 14, 2011

Who said the Spring Meeting starts Monday? For many it started Sunday by attending the various leadership and training sessions going on at the Hyatt Regency in Chicago. I was fortunate to attend a very interesting networking and leadership forum sponsored by the AIChE Chicago local section. The purpose was for leaders from other sections to gather and discuss best practices and share experiences. The talk was fast and furious, but I jotted down a few interesting tidbits. I hope you’ll think about them and comment on what your section does for best practices!

Young Professionals at Pittsburgh's Library Bar [PHOTOS]

November 1, 2012

More than 80 young professionals gathered at The Library on Pittsburgh's South Side for the joint YP-SIOC Social co-sponsored by the Young Professionals Committee (YPC) and the Societal Impact Operating Council (SIOC). Check out the photos of this exercise and other fun we had at the event below in the slideshow.

Looking Back: Oil Exploration Before Big Data

April 11, 2013

Watch as George Laguros, Geophysicist for the Marathon Oil Corporation in Houston, Texas, talks about analyzing seismic data in the present and reminisces about the days of analysis with a pencil, slide rule, and graph paper.

The Second Phase of ChE Education

October 23, 2013

What you learn in a ChE degree program is powerful—but once we start work, every chemical engineer finds out they need to learn even more.


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