Elisabeth Drake
Dr. Elisabeth Drake
Emeritus Staff, MIT
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  • Michaela, London

    Added Tuesday, September 13, 2016 at 12:21 PM

    Hello, my name is Michaela and I am applying to do Chemical Engineering for the next academic year at university. I have great interests in the course and would really like to pursue it in order to achieve some goals I have for the future. However, I have heard too many times of how difficult the course is and how I would have no life. My science knowledge is a good standard but I am average in maths. Reading such negative comments has put me in a very tough place as to whether or not I should ...
    Answers 1
    Answered Tuesday, September 13, 2016 at 12:21 PM
    Dear Michaela,  Many years ago (when girls weren't thought able to be chemical engineers, I enjoyed science classes.  I liked chemistry, but didn't want to work in a lab for the rest of my life. Some classmates were applying to MIT - and I thought about ...
  • Lorena C., Miami, FL

    Added Saturday, January 30, 2016 at 5:49 PM

    Hi!, I am a chemical engineer student, and Im originally from Miami, FL. I love ChemE but, whenever I go to career fairs in my university, I notice that there are not so many job opportunities in my home town. Is my perception from the career fair true? will be too hard for me to find a job in Miami?
    Answers 1
    Answered Saturday, January 30, 2016 at 5:49 PM

    Dear Lorena, 

    Not sure where you are going to school, but if it is distant from Miami then smaller companies in Miami might not participate in your job fairs.  There is an AIChE local section in Central Florida.  (see:  ...

  • Jeremy, Baltimore

    Added Sunday, August 16, 2015 at 8:50 PM

    Can I get chemical engineering job with a master's degree but no related bachelor's? In fact, my bachelor's degree is in neuroscience.
    Answers 1
    Answered Sunday, August 16, 2015 at 8:50 PM
    Dear Jeremy, There are plenty of chemical engineering jobs where your SB in neuroscience would be a plus.  It sounds like you have a master's in chemical engineering, so you are different from someone with only a neuroscience background.  Chemical ...
  • Diane, Salem

    Added Friday, July 4, 2014 at 1:47 PM

    I have been told that Ford Company has civil engineers who travel abroad and build roads. Is this true or false?
    Answers 1
    Answered Friday, July 4, 2014 at 1:47 PM

    Dear Diane, 

    This is really a question for the Ford Company!  Many engineers in US companies travel widely abroad in all sort of capacities. I am a chemical engineer and traveled throughout my career working as a consultant to governments and ...

  • Raina, Wildwood

    Added Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at 7:05 PM

    Hi I am currently a 10th grader, soon to be an 11th grader in high school! I've always had a great passion for math and science. In fact, I am always excited to come home and complete my math and chemistry homework. Considering my love for math and science, I am leaning towards pursuing my future career somewhere in the engineering field. Throughout my high school career, I have taken and will want to be taking Geometry, Algebra I, II, and III, Trigonometry, Pre-calculus, AP Physics I and ...
    Answers 1
    Answered Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at 7:05 PM

    Dear Raina,  

    It sounds like you are taking more than the usual math and science courses needed to get into a good engineering college.  But this is the time to see which colleges might best meet your interests and to learn about the ...

  • Leila

    Added Sunday, December 8, 2013 at 8:04 AM

    Hello! I am very interested in becoming a chemical engineer. Right now, I am in Grade 8. I have a passion for chemistry and physics, but not so much math. I have very good grades in Chem and Physics, but my Math grades are slightly lower, averaging around a B+. I'm wondering if that level of math is good enough to become a chemical engineer. Also, are there any courses, classes or extra activities that could help me achieve my goal of becoming a Chemical Engineer? Thank you so much! Leila
    Answers 1
    Answered Sunday, December 8, 2013 at 8:04 AM
    Hi Leila!  If you are interested in chemistry and physics and their engineering applications, you will learn the math necessary for pursuing chemical engineering.  Right now, it is important to get a solid academic background so you can get into a good ...
  • Marwa asked Elisabeth Drake, MIT

    Added Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at 8:12 PM

    Hi I have BSC in Chemical engineering never practised it yet. I would like to complete my study but I was wondering which is the best major for a master degree to take? I was thinking about engineering management or master in science. What will give me the good career? And I heard that a chemical engineer can be a pharmacist if taking 2 years courses. Is that true?
    Answers 1
    Answered Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at 8:12 PM

    Hi Marwa! 

    Thanks for a good question, but you didn’t say enough about what you really would like to do in the future.  If you are interested in pharmacy, then a Master of Science would be more useful.  (I don’t know whether ...

  • Swarnalaxmi, Columbia, MS asked Elisabeth Drake, MIT

    Added Friday, March 30, 2012 at 4:59 AM

    Hi! I am a freshmen taking the general requirements. I am taking chemistry classes and I like them. As i have already been interested in engineering and was not sure which engineering to take, after taking chemistry i am seriously been thinking of doing chemical engineering. But i am not sure if chemical engineering jobs will offer a suitable environment for women. I also want to know the different kind of jobs for chemical engineers.
    Answers 1
    Answered Friday, March 30, 2012 at 4:59 AM
    Dear Swarnalaxmi, I had the same questions you raise when I was trying to decide about what major to take in college. I liked chemistry but didnt want to go into a pure research field (where a doctorate is usually required for professional stature). ...
  • Kayla Lock, Dunedin, FL asked Elisabeth Drake, MIT

    Added Thursday, March 29, 2012 at 7:47 AM

    Umm, hello. I'm a senior in highschool and up until now I've always been real indecisive when it came to what I want to do and who I want to be. But now, I think I may be interested in the field of Chemical Engineering. I love Chemistry to pieces, as well as Biology, and I've taken A.P. Chemistry, A.P. Biology, Pre-Calculus, A.P. Calculus and Anatomy, but no Physics. Is this a pretty good start-off for achieving my goals? To be a Chemical Engineer, does one have to be exceedingly smart, or does ...
    Answers 1
    Answered Thursday, March 29, 2012 at 7:47 AM
    Dear Kayla, With your interests in math, chemistry, and biology, you seem to be well suited to become a chemical engineer. Chemical Engineering is a very broad profession (e.g., bioengineering, environmental engineering, computer-aided design, new ...
  • emy, malaysia asked Elisabeth Drake, MIT

    Added Wednesday, March 28, 2012 at 8:39 AM

    Hi..i'm emy i love chemistry so much. i’m now studying foundation for engineering in a local university and i was thinking to further my degree in biochemical engineering or chemical engineering, but i’m confused 1) i would love to know the difference between the two courses 2) what are the differences between working as chemical engineer compared to a biochemical engineer? 3) which has higher job opportunities? (since i am in malaysia), 4) if i want to be a food engineer, which degree ...
    Answers 1
    Answered Wednesday, March 28, 2012 at 8:39 AM
    Dear Emy, Twenty years ago, most chemical engineers did not study biology! Have you taken a course in biochemistry yet? If you love that as much as chemistry, then you know that you will enjoy a career in food engineering. As biological engineering ...