Pharmaceutical Botanist

Create cutting-edge medicines out of plants.
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Quick Stats


Salary Range
$42,000 – $143,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Pharmaceutical Botanists do?

A Pharmaceutical Botanist studies the medicinal applications of plants. Working in laboratories, greenhouses, and even the great outdoors, Pharmaceutical Botanists collect samples of plants and study their qualities. The ultimate goal of a Pharmaceutical Botanist is to find new uses for various roots, leaves, and flowers that can change the world and even save lives.

Expect long hours hunched over a microscope or stuck in a lab with your team, performing numerous experiments until a new discovery is reached. Once the operative compounds and desired traits of a plant are ascertained, you may also need to determine how best to cultivate the necessary amounts of the plant.

What pests or diseases attack this plant? What conditions does it thrive in? You often need to work on both sides of the equation: making new drugs and serums, and producing the plants they’re drawn from.

You’re part of a research team in all of your efforts. Good communication skills, organization, cleanliness, safety, and computer skills are a must. Everything takes place on computers, even when dealing with something physical like plants. An understanding of complex systems online and in the real world will help you in this job.

Should I be a Pharmaceutical Botanist?

You should have a doctoral degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Flexible: You're open to change and think variety is the spice of life.
  • Persistent: You keep pushing through, even when faced with tough obstacles.

  • How to become a Pharmaceutical Botanist

    Most Pharmaceutical Botanists have a Doctorate. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaana9&chl=||associate%27s+%281%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2818%25%29||doctorate+%2881%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,81
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