About us

What is Chemical Engineering?

Chemical engineering is a branch of engineering sometimes called ‘manufacturing’ or ‘process’ engineering. Chemical engineering produces, transforms, and transports materials, and works from lab scale to large scale production.

Chemical engineering impacts every part of our life. The water we drink, materials for clothes, fuel, plastic, metals, pharmaceuticals, waste disposal; the design and production of all of these requires chemical engineering. Chemical engineering is critical to responding to climate change, through developing and implementing renewable, sustainable technologies and embedding the circular economy.

Chemical Engineers in industry are wide ranging. They can be Agricultural, Metallurgical, Petroleum, Biomedical, Materials, Mining, or Pharmaceutical Engineers, etc. The value Chemical Engineers bring to society is vast and almost immeasurable.

What do Chemical Engineers do?

Chemical engineers use the principles of chemistry, mathematics and physics, sometimes alongside other areas like biology, to investigate and solve problems. They often integrate economics, digital technology, legal, software programming, and systems engineering to design safe and efficient solutions.

On a day-to-day basis, there is no typical chemical engineer. A chemical engineer might work on the factory floor, in an office, on a construction site, and anywhere in between. They might undertake detailed or concept design. Chemical Engineers might work for a consultancy, contractor, government organisation, regulator, or commercial client. Many don’t even work within chemical engineering, and have moved into project management, people management, business management, safety, regulation, management consultancy and many more.

Some examples of chemical engineers in unexpected jobs include Frank Capra (movie director), Dolph Lundgren (actor), and EE ‘Doc’ Smith (science fiction author).

Chemical Engineers making an impact in unconventional careers (PDF 102KB).

About the Chemical College

The Chemical College is one of nine responsible for the learned society activities of Engineers Australia. We focus on chemical engineering as well as:

  • Maintain, develop and promote the body of knowledge broadly associated with chemical engineering.
  • Develop and audit accreditation standards for tertiary degrees and chartered status.
  • Provide expert advice for Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
  • Contribute towards national and international standards and policies relevant to the field.

Chemical College Board 2021

Your representatives on the Board for this year are:

  • Grant Scott FIEAust CPEng EngExec APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus) – Chair
  • Keith Sharp FIEAust CPEng EngExec APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus) - Deputy Chair
  • Daniel Edge FIEAust CPEng NER 
  • Katherine McDonald MIEAust 
  • Kirsty Johns FIEAust CPEng EngExec APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus) 

Chemical College Advisory Board 2021

Learn more about the members of the 2021 Advisory Board.

Your representatives on the Advisory Board for this year are:

  • Dr Marlene Kanga AM Hon.FIEAust Hon.FIChemE, FTSE
  • Prof Robin Batterham AO FREng FAA FTSE
  • Prof Christine Ehlig-Economides
  • Prof Veena Sahajwalla FAA FTSE HonFIEAust CPEng
  • Ms Liza Maimone FIEAust CPEng EngExec NER APEC Engineer IntPE(Aus)