Students major in chemistry to pursue industrial or graduate opportunities in medicine, environmental science, computational molecular modeling, forensics, plastics, chemistry, textiles, health sciences, materials science, energy production, biotechnology, chemical engineering, pharmaceutical sciences, ceramics, environmental engineering, or toxicology. Chemists represent the largest group of industrial scientists in the United States; approximately 50% of all research and development positions in this country are filled by professionals with chemistry or chemical engineering backgrounds.Students majoring in chemistry can select one of seven programs of study to tailor their curricula to meet their long-term professional objectives. Five programs of study focus on American Chemistry Society (ACS) approved areas: chemistry biochemistry, biochemistry, engineering-physics, forensic chemistry, and business . The multidisciplinary chemistry program of study is designed for maximum flexibility to meet a broad array of students interests or needs; the biochemistry degree track is designed to meet the needs of students interested in those health professions that do not require undergraduate research. The ACS Biochemistry track was the nation’s first American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB)-Accredited program.
Students who wish to prepare for application to medical school should acquire a broad foundation in the natural sciences, mathematics, humanities, and the social sciences. Chemistry is a popular major for such students since it allows them to complete the premed requirements without taking a large number of courses outside the major. In addition, the percentage of chemistry majors applying and being accepted to medical school is higher than observed for most other majors. Medical schools generally require two semesters of each of the following courses:Inorganic Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, General Biology, Physics, Mathematics, and English Composition and Literature. (Biochemistry, anatomy and physiology, genetics, and microbiology are strongly recommended.) All of the courses listed above can be used to fulfill requirements necessary for a major in chemistry.
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