Created by noted American director, producer, and writer Vince Gilligan, Breaking Bad is a popular neo-western crime drama series that made science, particularly chemistry, cool again. The series’ main protagonist, Walter White, goes from a meek, mild, and severely underpaid high school chemistry teacher to a criminal chemical genius worth millions.
Although following in Walter White’s fictional footsteps will probably land you in jail in real life ? so don’t try this at home ? his expert knowledge of chemistry remains admirable and even inspiring. If anything, Breaking Bad and other shows like it give glimpses into the exciting careers of chemists, scientists, and lab technicians. Although TV portrayals are rarely what the seem, a career in science is well worth the hype.
If you’re considering a career in a scientific field but aren’t sure it will be as cool as its made out to be, here are a few reasons why working in a lab beats a day stuck at the office or anywhere else:
You get to use and “play with” really cool equipment
Scientific research related fields typically offer a high degree of job satisfaction and it’s easy to see why. It’s not everyday that you get to use state of the art, top of the line, and super expensive scientific lab products such as incubated shakers, immersion coolers, and vacuum desiccators ? that is, unless you work in lab. Although you may occasionally use standard office equipment such as copy machines, scanners, and even fax machines, a great deal of your time will spent using and learning how to use cool stuff like incubated shakers.
You get to work on cool stuff
From fertilizers to beauty products to prescription medications and everything in between, research and development is key to creating solid product solutions. Being a part of that, even if it’s a small part as a research associate or lab assistant, can be fun, exciting, and extremely rewarding. Working in a research or scientific lab provides the opportunity to directly contribute to the advancement of society as a whole. Whether it’s culturing microbes in incubated shakers or taking out the trash, working in a lab allows to be in the thick of scientific and technological advancements.
You get to make a real difference
Are you passionate about a particular cause and want to create more awareness and positive change? Consider a career in science. Knowledge is power, and scientific research has the ability to make the world a cleaner, healthier, and happier place. Pursuing a career in science is one of the best ways to create and be the change you wish to see in the world, such as encouraging eco-responsibility. Your research and work as a scientist has the potential irrevocably change the world works, sleeps, eats, heals, parties, and does just about anything! For example, Einstein’s work created ripples across the entire scientific community and continues to shape inspire modern scientific research to this day.
Yes, being able to “play” with cool “toys” and scientific equipment products such as incubated shakers is awesome, but in its essence, a career in science involves much more. Regardless of the field of study or lab equipment used, science as a whole continues to mold the future and make the world a better place for all.