Chemistry Major and Minor

Study the composition and behavior of matter. Analyze and synthesize molecules. Apply your chemical knowledge to identify–and then answer–big questions.

Two Albion College students handling a test tube holding yellow liquid

Why Study Chemistry at Albion?

As a Chemistry Major, you’ll develop a broad understanding of the five subdisciplines of chemistry (analytical, inorganic, organic, physical, and biochemistry) while also being given the freedom to explore and research your particular areas of interest. You’ll design ambitious experiments and collaborate with your peers and faculty on groundbreaking research. 

You’ll have all the benefits of a broad liberal arts approach, developing keen research, analytical and communication skills that will enable you to apply everything you learn to advance scientific knowledge–and our understanding of the world.

What Will You Learn as a Chemistry Major or Minor?

You'll ground your study in the basic principles of modern chemistry, such as atomic and molecular structure, equilibrium, thermodynamics and kinetics.

You’ll study the behaviors of organic and inorganic materials, developing analytical and communication skills that will allow you to interpret and share your findings.

You’ll learn how the fundamentals of mathematics and physics enhance your knowledge and understanding when working with chemical theory and problem-solving.

You’ll participate in hands-on research and perform experiments in our state of the art laboratories, manipulating chemicals to study their properties and reactions.

Highlights

Research

Albion College students investigate freshwater habitats in Michigan.

We believe that involving students in research is as important to their education as classroom work. The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry has a long history of student-faculty collaborative research. This research is funded through a variety of different sources, including the National Science Foundation, the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund, and the Foundation for Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity (FURSCA) at Albion College.

Scholarships and Awards

Two students observing test tubes while wearing protective goggles.

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry presents several different awards and scholarships to students who demonstrate exceptional academic achievement. Some awards are based upon the year of study in the chemistry program, allowing students to receive multiple honors throughout their four years of study.

Off-Campus Study

Jessica Butchley with friends in Berlin, Germany

Gain real world experience in another culture by spending a semester studying off campus. You’ll have the opportunity to earn academic credit somewhere like Ireland or South Africa through Albion’s Center for International Education, participate in an immersive research experience at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), or spend a semester gaining hands-on experience working and studying in one of America’s oldest cities at the Philadelphia Center.

Laboratories

Three students working in a lab on campus

Get hands-on experience in our cutting-edge research facilities. Our science complex includes state-of-the-art teaching and research laboratories. Our department’s instrumentation includes a 400 MHz nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer, two Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometers, atomic absorption spectrometer, molecular fluorescence spectrometer, two Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrometers (with ATR sampling), macroscale microwave reactor, six diode array UV-VIS spectrometers, thermal gravimetric analysis,  and HPLC and IC chromatographs.

Careers & Outcomes

Briefcase

Job Titles

  • Chemist
  • Research Scientist
  • Chemical Technician
  • Physician
  • Pharmacy Technician
  • Chemical Engineer
  • Epidemiologist

Employers

  • Brenntag Great Lakes
  • St. John Hospital and Medical Center
  • Dow Chemical
  • Severstal Steel
  • Eurofins Scientific
  • Fisher Scientific
  • BASF