Year 2011 – ACS Tour Speaker

ACS Tour Speaker

Dr. Lisa Balbes
Balbes Consultants

Nontraditional Careers for Chemists

Thursday, March 24 at 6:30pm

Room 210, Winter Hall, Westmont College, Santa Barbara


Admission is free. Light refreshments will be served before the talk.



A chemistry background prepares you for much more than just a laboratory career. The broad science education, analytical thinking, research methods, and other skills learned are of value to a wide variety of types of employers, and essential for a plethora of types of positions. By understanding your own personal values and interests, you can make informed decisions about what career paths to explore, and identify positions that match your needs. This talk will discuss a variety of nontraditional careers for chemists, such as chemical information, patent work, technical writing, education, human resources, sales and marketing, and much more. We will discuss typical tasks, education or training requirements, and personal characteristics that make for a successful career in each field, illustrated with specific examples. Valuable tips and advice about planning career transitions will also be provided.


Dr. Lisa M. Balbes founded Balbes Consultants (formerly Osiris Consultants) in 1992. Balbes Consultants provides scientific writing services, including documentation, grants, proposals and more for over 50 client companies. She was chair of the St. Louis Section of the American Chemical Society in 2002, receiving an Outstanding Local Section Achievement Award and a Salute to Excellence Award for her work there. She is also very involved in career development for chemists, has been a volunteer career consultant for ACS since 1993, presentersince 2002, and is the author of Nontraditional Careers for Chemists, published by Oxford University Press in 2006. Dr. Balbes obtained a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her undergraduate degrees in chemistry and psychology from Washington University in St Louis.

 For more information, see, or contact her at

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Lisa Balbes