Maj
Min

Chemistry

About

The chemistry curriculum at Saint Michael’s College combines small class sizes, excellent faculty and personal attention with the opportunity to gain practical, hands-on experience with laboratory instrumentation early in your college career.

Our program is approved by the American Chemical Society – a designation that is important to both graduate schools and employers.

A bachelor’s degree in chemistry prepares you for employment in government and industrial laboratories or for further study in graduate or professional schools. By choosing appropriate electives, a major in chemistry can lead to a career in medicine, dentistry, allied health sciences, law or the business world.

Our chemistry program has an excellent track record for acceptance to graduate and professional schools. Recently, our alumni have gone on to graduate programs at such schools as Dartmouth, Duke, Tufts, and Yale.

Sample Four Year Plan

Fall

CH 110 General Chemistry I and lab

MA 150 Calculus I

First Year Seminar

Liberal Studies course

Spring

CH 117 Organic Chemistry I and lab

MA 160 Calculus II

First Year Seminar

Liberal Studies course

Fall

CH 207 Organic Chemistry II and lab

PY 210 Physics I and lab

Liberal Studies course

Elective

Spring

CH 208 General Chemistry II and lab

CH 215 Integrated Chemical Analysis and lab

PY 211 Physics II and lab

Elective

Fall

CH 302 Chemical Thermodynamics and Kinetics and lab

CH 325 Biochemistry I and lab

Junior Seminar

Elective

Spring

CH 304 Quantum Chemistry and Spectroscopy and lab

CH 305 Inorganic Chemistry and lab

Elective

Elective

Fall

CH 410 Chemistry Senior Seminar

CH 417 Chemical Instrumentation and lab

Electives

Spring

CH 410 Chemistry Senior Seminar

Electives

Students who have received a score of 4 or higher on the Chemistry AP Exam may place out of CH 110 General Chemistry I and receive credit for the course.

Students planning graduate studies in chemistry will likely require more math background and should consult with their academic advisors on this matter.

In order to receive an ACS-approved degree in Chemistry, students must also complete an approved research experience during the summer or academic year and submit a research report.

In Depth

Our program focuses on preparing you to succeed in industry and academia by helping you develop the skills to solve chemical problems, to read meaningfully and to utilize properly chemical literature, to work effectively and safely in the laboratory, to communicate scientific ideas and discoveries both orally and in writing, to function well as a member of a team, and to make ethical decisions in the area of science.

Chemistry is the study of matter and its changes. As a chemistry major, you will start with the science and math courses that provide the background necessary to study chemistry. Those courses include General Chemistry I &II, Organic Chemistry I &II, Calculus I &II, College Physics I &II, and Integrated Chemical Analysis. In these introductory chemistry courses, you will gain a broad overview of the many different topics in chemistry, including stoichiometry, bonding, gases, the structure of atoms and molecules, acid-base theory, organic synthesis, error analysis, ethical issues in science, and quantitative analysis. Then you will go on to study further in the areas of inorganic chemistry, physical chemistry, biochemistry and chemical instrumentation, where you will learn about thermodynamics, kinetics, quantum chemistry and spectroscopy, the structure and formation of coordination compounds, group theory, some of the major categories of structures that make up biological systems (including peptides/proteins, carbohydrates and nucleic acids), and the chemical instrumentation that can be used to study the structure and function of molecules.

As a senior, you will research a chemistry topic in great depth as part of your capstone course, Senior Seminar. You will have two options: you may either prepare a major report on the topic or develop a related research proposal (modeled after the process whereby scientists procure funding for research). For examples of recent chemistry senior projects, go to Seminar Projects. You will also be strongly encouraged to conduct academic research  or complete an internship  as part of your education.

Careers

After graduation, our majors go on to careers like:

  • Adhesive Chemist
  • Animal Nutritionist
  • Agricultural Chemist
  • Atmospheric Chemist
  • Biotechnology Researcher
  • Business Development Director
  • Ceramics Engineer
  • Chemical Consulting
  • Chemical Educator
  • Chemical Facilities Manager (Local, Global, Military)
  • Chemical Information Specialist-Software (Private, Public)
  • Chemical Safety Consultant (Academic, Military, Health)
  • Chemical Sales
  • Chemistry Professor
  • Clinical Research
  • Consumer Safety Officer
  • Entrepreneur
  • Environmental Protection Agency (air, water, waste)
  • Environmental Chemist
  • Food Safety Evaluator (USDA, Private)
  • Food Chemist
  • Forensic Pharmaceutical Analysis (Private, FDA)
  • Forensic Chemist
  • Fragrance Chemist
  • Geochemist
  • Glass Chemist (Auto, Consumer, Safety) 
  • High School Teacher
  • Human Resources Director
  • Marketing and Communications Consultant
  • Materials Chemist (NASA, Private, Military)
  • Medical Doctor
  • Medical Equipment Developer
  • Medicinal Chemist (FDA, Private)
  • Metals Manufacturing (Mining, Processing, Alloys)
  • Nanotechnology
  • National Institutes of Health Researcher
  • Vitamin and Supplement Chemist
  • Petroleum Chemist (Oil Industry, Auto)
  • Paint Specialist
  • Patent Agent (Private, Academic)
  • Patent Attorney (Private, Government)
  • Pharmaceutical Chemist (Develop Drug Molecules)
  • Plant Engineering
  • Polymer Chemist (Plastics, Fibers)
  • Pulp and Paper Chemist
  • Rubber Chemist (Recycling, Auto, Synthetic)
  • Surface Chemist (Computer Chips, Drug Development)
  • Textile Chemist
  • U.S. Department of Energy (Solve the Energy Crisis)
  • Waste Management (Chemical and Hazardous Waste)
  • Water Treatment Chemist (Municipal, Private, Federal)

Graduate Study

Our chemistry program has an excellent track record for acceptance to graduate and professional schools. Forty-two percent of our chemistry and biochemistry graduates immediately attend graduate science or medical schools.

Graduate schools they have attended recently include:

  • Boston University
  • Dartmouth College
  • Duke University
  • Tufts University
  • University College of Dublin
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Maryland
  • University of Massachusetts
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Rochester
  • University of Vermont
  • University of Washington State
  • University of Wisconsin
  • West Virginia University
  • Yale University

Research

The Chemistry Department at Saint Michael’s College strongly encourages students to pursue research opportunities based upon their interests and career goals. There are numerous opportunities to conduct research in all areas of chemistry, either with Saint Michael’s faculty members or off campus at national laboratories and at institutions throughout the country.

In fact, most chemistry majors graduate having spent one or more summers conducting research.  Funds are available to support students who want to work on advanced research during the summer.  They also have opportunities to present their research results at local and national meetings.  Recent summer research projects by chemistry majors include:

  • Computational Calculation of the Mulliken Charge Densities and Dipole Moments of Solvatoflourchromic Dyes
  • The Investigation of Ionic Liquids as a Tool for the Synthesis of Porous Zirconia Catalysts
  • Investigation of Ultrahigh Surface Area and Highly Graphitic Carbon for the Removal of Gasoline Based Pollutants from Ground Water
  • Synthesis, Purification and Characterization of a Selenouracil Derivative
  • Oxidation of Cyclohesanol with Catalytic Cobalt (II) Chloride in SBA-16
  • Building a Protein-Based Therapeutic for the Treatment of Prostate Cancer
  • Spectrophotometric Analysis of Fluorinated Compounds in Ski Wax
  • Purification and Expression of Modified Calmodulin Protein
  • The Carbon Coated MgO (111) as a Catalyst in an Aqueous Environment
  • Synthesis and Catalytic Testing of High Surface Area Strontium Oxide, Barium Oxide and Mixed Metal Oxides to Yield Biodiesel from Waste Phospholipids Procured from Algae

An excellent site for finding research opportunities for students can be found at the National Science Foundation.

Current and prospective students in the natural sciences, math and engineering can find other research opportunities at the Web Guide to Research for Undergraduates.

Chemistry and biochemistry faculty members encourage interested students to e-mail or call them directly to speak about possible opportunities that exist in the department.

In Depth

Our program focuses on preparing you to succeed in industry and academia by helping you develop the skills to solve chemical problems, to read meaningfully and to utilize properly chemical literature, to work effectively and safely in the laboratory, to communicate scientific ideas and discoveries both orally and in writing, to function well as a member of a team, and to make ethical decisions in the area of science.

Chemistry is the study of matter and its changes. As a chemistry major, you will start with the science and math courses that provide the background necessary to study chemistry. Those courses include General Chemistry I &II, Organic Chemistry I &II, Calculus I &II, College Physics I &II, and Integrated Chemical Analysis. In these introductory chemistry courses, you will gain a broad overview of the many different topics in chemistry, including stoichiometry, bonding, gases, the structure of atoms and molecules, acid-base theory, organic synthesis, error analysis, ethical issues in science, and quantitative analysis. Then you will go on to study further in the areas of inorganic chemistry, physical chemistry, biochemistry and chemical instrumentation, where you will learn about thermodynamics, kinetics, quantum chemistry and spectroscopy, the structure and formation of coordination compounds, group theory, some of the major categories of structures that make up biological systems (including peptides/proteins, carbohydrates and nucleic acids), and the chemical instrumentation that can be used to study the structure and function of molecules.

As a senior, you will research a chemistry topic in great depth as part of your capstone course, Senior Seminar. You will have two options: you may either prepare a major report on the topic or develop a related research proposal (modeled after the process whereby scientists procure funding for research). For examples of recent chemistry senior projects, go to Seminar Projects. You will also be strongly encouraged to conduct academic research  or complete an internship  as part of your education.

Careers

After graduation, our majors go on to careers like:

  • Adhesive Chemist
  • Animal Nutritionist
  • Agricultural Chemist
  • Atmospheric Chemist
  • Biotechnology Researcher
  • Business Development Director
  • Ceramics Engineer
  • Chemical Consulting
  • Chemical Educator
  • Chemical Facilities Manager (Local, Global, Military)
  • Chemical Information Specialist-Software (Private, Public)
  • Chemical Safety Consultant (Academic, Military, Health)
  • Chemical Sales
  • Chemistry Professor
  • Clinical Research
  • Consumer Safety Officer
  • Entrepreneur
  • Environmental Protection Agency (air, water, waste)
  • Environmental Chemist
  • Food Safety Evaluator (USDA, Private)
  • Food Chemist
  • Forensic Pharmaceutical Analysis (Private, FDA)
  • Forensic Chemist
  • Fragrance Chemist
  • Geochemist
  • Glass Chemist (Auto, Consumer, Safety) 
  • High School Teacher
  • Human Resources Director
  • Marketing and Communications Consultant
  • Materials Chemist (NASA, Private, Military)
  • Medical Doctor
  • Medical Equipment Developer
  • Medicinal Chemist (FDA, Private)
  • Metals Manufacturing (Mining, Processing, Alloys)
  • Nanotechnology
  • National Institutes of Health Researcher
  • Vitamin and Supplement Chemist
  • Petroleum Chemist (Oil Industry, Auto)
  • Paint Specialist
  • Patent Agent (Private, Academic)
  • Patent Attorney (Private, Government)
  • Pharmaceutical Chemist (Develop Drug Molecules)
  • Plant Engineering
  • Polymer Chemist (Plastics, Fibers)
  • Pulp and Paper Chemist
  • Rubber Chemist (Recycling, Auto, Synthetic)
  • Surface Chemist (Computer Chips, Drug Development)
  • Textile Chemist
  • U.S. Department of Energy (Solve the Energy Crisis)
  • Waste Management (Chemical and Hazardous Waste)
  • Water Treatment Chemist (Municipal, Private, Federal)

Graduate Study

Our chemistry program has an excellent track record for acceptance to graduate and professional schools. Forty-two percent of our chemistry and biochemistry graduates immediately attend graduate science or medical schools.

Graduate schools they have attended recently include:

  • Boston University
  • Dartmouth College
  • Duke University
  • Tufts University
  • University College of Dublin
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Maryland
  • University of Massachusetts
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Rochester
  • University of Vermont
  • University of Washington State
  • University of Wisconsin
  • West Virginia University
  • Yale University

Research

The Chemistry Department at Saint Michael’s College strongly encourages students to pursue research opportunities based upon their interests and career goals. There are numerous opportunities to conduct research in all areas of chemistry, either with Saint Michael’s faculty members or off campus at national laboratories and at institutions throughout the country.

In fact, most chemistry majors graduate having spent one or more summers conducting research.  Funds are available to support students who want to work on advanced research during the summer.  They also have opportunities to present their research results at local and national meetings.  Recent summer research projects by chemistry majors include:

  • Computational Calculation of the Mulliken Charge Densities and Dipole Moments of Solvatoflourchromic Dyes
  • The Investigation of Ionic Liquids as a Tool for the Synthesis of Porous Zirconia Catalysts
  • Investigation of Ultrahigh Surface Area and Highly Graphitic Carbon for the Removal of Gasoline Based Pollutants from Ground Water
  • Synthesis, Purification and Characterization of a Selenouracil Derivative
  • Oxidation of Cyclohesanol with Catalytic Cobalt (II) Chloride in SBA-16
  • Building a Protein-Based Therapeutic for the Treatment of Prostate Cancer
  • Spectrophotometric Analysis of Fluorinated Compounds in Ski Wax
  • Purification and Expression of Modified Calmodulin Protein
  • The Carbon Coated MgO (111) as a Catalyst in an Aqueous Environment
  • Synthesis and Catalytic Testing of High Surface Area Strontium Oxide, Barium Oxide and Mixed Metal Oxides to Yield Biodiesel from Waste Phospholipids Procured from Algae

An excellent site for finding research opportunities for students can be found at the National Science Foundation.

Current and prospective students in the natural sciences, math and engineering can find other research opportunities at the Web Guide to Research for Undergraduates.

Chemistry and biochemistry faculty members encourage interested students to e-mail or call them directly to speak about possible opportunities that exist in the department.