Chemistry

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Science in Chemistry (three tracks) certified by American Chemical Society (ACS)
  • Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry (non-ACS)

Program Description

Chemistry is the field of science associated with atoms and molecules, hence nanoscience and beyond. Overall, chemists focus their efforts to understand the behavior and properties of matter, the reactions and transformations that dictate chemical processes, and the creation of new substances. Chemistry is often considered the central science, linking the physical sciences with engineering, medicine, and life sciences. The subject of chemistry is typically organized into more focused subdisciplines, including organic chemistry, physical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, biochemistry, analytical chemistry, theoretical/computational chemistry, and materials chemistry. A degree in chemistry examines these topics to promote a fundamental understanding of the world and an application toward technological problems. Professional chemists apply their knowledge in many different areas ranging from environmental and biochemical processes to the development of new materials. They work in academic environments, high-tech start-ups, and research and development laboratories associated with practically every advanced technological field including medicine, energy, biotechnology, computing, and agriculture.

The B.S. degree program in chemistry is approved by the American Chemical Society (ACS) with a more traditional chemistry track that can be tailored to optimize preparation consistent with a student's individual career goals, offered along with specific curricular tracks emphasizing environmental chemistry or biochemistry.  These degree tracks are designed to educate professionals for the varied career opportunities this central scientific discipline affords. The curricula are therefore founded in rigorous fundamental science complemented by application of these principles to the materials, energy, minerals, biochemical and/or environmental fields. For example, those aspiring to enter Ph.D. programs in chemistry or biochemistry are strongly advised to include undergraduate research among their elective hours. Others interested in industrial chemistry choose area of special interest courses, for example in chemical engineering or metallurgy. A number of students complete degrees in both chemistry and chemical engineering as an excellent preparation for industrial careers.  

There is a separate B.S. degree in Biochemistry which is also offered. The B.S. degree program in biochemistry is designed to educate professionals for the varied career opportunities this scientific discipline affords. The curriculum is therefore founded in rigorous fundamental science complemented by application of these principles to the earth, environment and energy fields as the foundation for a Mines education.

Biochemistry is the field of science concerned with the chemical and physicochemical processes that occur within living organisms. It focuses on molecular genetics, protein science and metabolism. Almost all areas of the life sciences are being uncovered and developed by biochemical methodology and research. Biochemistry focuses on understanding how biological molecules give rise to the processes that occur within living cells and between cells, which in turn relates greatly to the study and understanding of tissues, organs, organism and microorganism structure and function.

A degree in biochemistry examines these topics to promote a fundamental understanding of the fusion of chemistry and biology and an application toward technological problems. Professional biochemists apply their knowledge in many different areas ranging from environmental processes to the development of new biomaterials and novel renewable energy. They work in academic environments, high-tech start-ups, and research and development laboratories associated with practically every advanced technological field including medicine, energy, biotechnology, computing, and agriculture.

The instructional and research laboratories located in Coolbaugh Hall are state-of-the-art facilities with modern instrumentation for synthesis and characterization of molecules and materials. Instrumentation includes: gas chromatographs (GC), high-performance liquid chromatographs (HPLC), inductively-coupled-plasma-atomic emission spectrometers (ICP-AES), field-flow fractionation (FFF) equipment, mass spectrometry equipment (MS, GC/MS, GC/MS/MS, PY/MS, PY/GC/MS, SFC/MS, MALDI-TOF), 400 MHz and 500 MHz nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometers (NMR), infrared spectrometers (FTIR), ultraviolet-visible (UV) spectrometers, thermogravimetric analyzers (TGA), differential scanning calorimeters (DSC), and others including equipment for microscopy, light scattering, and elemental analysis.  In addition, the campus provides access to the Mines 2,144 core 23 teraflop supercomputer for computational research.

Professors

Thomas Gennett, Department Head

Richard C. Holz, Provost

Mark P. Jensen, Grandey University Chair in Nuclear Science & Engineering

Daniel M. Knauss, Associate Dean of Energy and Materials

Matthew C. Posewitz

James F. Ranville

Ryan M. Richards

Alan S. Sellinger

Bettina M. Voelker

Kim R. Williams

David T. Wu

Associate Professors

Judith Klein-Seetharaman

Jenifer C. Shafer

Brian G. Trewyn

Assistant Professors

Dylan Domaille

C. Michael McGuirk

Christine Morrison

Svitlana Pylypenko

Shubham Vyas

Teaching Professors

Renee L. Falconer, Assistant Department Head

Mark R. Seger

Teaching Associate Professors

Allison G. Caster

Angela Sower

Teaching Assistant Professors

Christian Beren

Amanda Jameer

Jonathan Miorelli

Research Professor

Mark E. Eberhart

Research Assistant Professors

Jessica Jackson

Yuan Yang

Joint Appointees

Matthew Beard

Todd Deutsch

Justin Johnson

Calvin Mukarakate

Bryan Pivovar

Affiliated Faculty

Wade Braunecker

Samuel Bryan

Stosh Kozimor

Joseph Meyer

Kathleen Smith

Professors Emeriti

Scott W. Cowley

Stephen R. Daniel

Dean W. Dickerhoof

Mark E. Eberhart

Kenneth W. Edwards

Ronald W. Klusman

Donald Langmuir

Donald L. Macalady

Patrick MacCarthy

Michael J. Pavelich

E. Craig Simmons

Kent J. Voorhees

Thomas R. Wildeman

John T. Williams