A chemistry major studies the chemical properties of substances in order to develop the ability to make discoveries and to solve the vast array of problems associated with existing technologies. Four programs of study leading to a bachelor of science degree and one leading to a bachelor of arts degree are available. The bachelor of arts program allows students to choose more elective courses in order to link chemistry with some other interest such as marketing/sales or patent law. The bachelor of science programs in biochemistry, environmental chemistry, forensic chemistry and general chemistry prepare students for postgraduate education and careers in industry, government, medicine and education. Students seeking state certification in secondary education must also complete requirements for a Master of Education degree, a one-year program at SRU. All of our programs are designed to steadily develop the quantitative, deductive and inductive reasoning skills that chemists must have.
The science and math course requirements taken during the first two years in our programs are almost identical. Consequently, students do not have to choose a specific specialization until their junior year.
A pharmacy option in the biochemistry program enables students to take advantage of a 3 + 3 affiliation agreement with the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine’s School of Pharmacy. Admission to the three-year pharmacy part of the program is competitive (see Pre-professional Programs).
All of our students are strongly encouraged to do research under the direction of one of our faculty. Three laboratories exist solely for student research, and student/faculty research is supported by modern analytical instrumentation in our spectroscopy and chromatography laboratories.
SRU graduates perform research and development at large corporations and small companies. Others are high school teachers and university professors. Some eventually move into careers in management or sales. Many have completed postgraduate programs in chemistry, engineering, medicine and other science related areas. The chemistry faculty at Slippery Rock University help students develop career goals that match their interests and this is reflected in the wide variety of careers our graduates pursue.