B.S. Programs in Chemistry or Biochemistry
Part of what makes our chemistry programs among the best is the high quality small-school learning atmosphere while also providing the career-relevant big-school opportunities.We have been designated as a top school in educating STEM talent by STEM Jobs magazine. You have the choice between four B.S. undergraduate degrees from the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry that will enable you to achieve your goals. We also proudly offer the esteemed Chemistry B.S. degree nationally accredited by the American Chemical Society, providing an even more robust education and impressive resumé. We are also proud to offer our most recently developed major, the B.S. in Biochemistry in the Pre-Health Track. This track is optimized to prepare you for various medical schools and programs, and being a biochemistry major is more prestigious and sets you apart from applicants from other majors. The superior options we offer you can provide opportunities ranging from attending graduate or medical school to obtaining jobs in industry or government after graduation. All of our B.S. degrees were designed to conform to recommendations of the American Chemical Society's Committee on Professional Training
You are also capable of earning a Master's degree in only one year, instead of the traditional two years, in our dual-degree programs. You currently have three chemistry-related dual-degree programs, all with a B.S. in Chemistry and varying M.S. foci. It's a 'win-win situation' since earning the M.S. degree in this program cuts time and costs compared to a traditional program while offering the same benefits. In addition, we anticipate soon offering a fourth dual-degree, the B.S. in Biochemistry and M.S. in Chemistry.
At Duquesne, part of your excellent education comes from being taught by world-renowned professors that specialize in both teaching and research in their respective fields of chemistry. You are taught directly by these professors in small-school environments, at a 14:1 student:faculty ratio, providing a personalized learning environment. You will also learn by doing, immersed in the same environment with the professors, Ph.D., and M.S. students, with the opportunity to begin research projects as early as your freshman year. At a much earlier time than many other school, you'll have access to the best instrumentation and further develop your skills, setting you further apart from the competition when reaching for your bigger goals. We also offer the paid summer internship program, enabling you the chance to further develop your skills and prepare for your career.
For the undergraduate degrees, students must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.0 in the major, complete at least the last 30 credit hours of courses at Duquesne, pre-register with the Academic Advisor for a B.S./B.A. degree in a major field, and submit an application for degree form provided by the Registrar before the deadline published in the current University calendar (no student is considered a degree candidate prior to submission of this form). In addition, specific degree programs are summarized below.
Our program is built on the premise that students learn science best by enjoying the successes and failures of research, so we encourage students to begin research as soon as possible and, indeed, students should approach faculty members to investigate beginning research as early as their freshman year. Students interested in beginning research should browse faculty research interests on the web and make an appointment with individual faculty members to discuss their research. Research opportunities are available for academic credit or on a volunteer basis, and occur throughout the year. Occasionally, funding may be available through an individual faculty member’s grant.
In addition to academic year research, our Summer Undergraduate Research Program is currently funded by grants from the NIH and NSF, as well as the scholarship programs described above, the Chemistry Department, the Bayer School, and individual research grants. Furthermore, our students can be potentially involved in the general Undergraduate Research Program, the Pain Undergraduate Research Experience, or the Neurodegenerative Undergraduate Research Experience. Each summer, approximately 40-45 students participate in summer research in our department.
Individual Attention and Mentoring
The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry has a dynamic, motivated faculty who take pride in the success of their students. We believe that each student should receive individual attention during his/her entire undergraduate career. Each student plans a course of study in his or her first year in close cooperation with a faculty mentor and the student's progress is closely coordinated with his or her developing interests.
Seminars and Symposia
The department maintains an active seminar program, with one invited speaker each week, chosen from among the world leaders in our science. The program includes at least one speaker each year chosen by our students.
American Chemical Society Student Members
Our Student Member ACS chapter is a social and service organization open to all science majors who strive to attain academic and professional success at Duquesne. Our mission is to foster friendship and mentorship among members, create professional and networking opportunities that engage our undergraduate students, to serve as the centralized core of learning and activities in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and to make chemistry more accessible to the students and public. For the 2020-2021 year, the organization is operated by an executive board made up of 14 undergraduates. Membership has grown from 12 students in 2008 to over 100 as of 2020! Our student chapter has received national recognition from the national ACS office since 1998 and the highest "Outstanding" award since 2012. Moreover, the club has been awarded the Green Chemistry award since 2015 for its efforts for outreach and education about environmentally friendly actions. The student ACS chapter at Duquesne organizes various activities on campus such as "whack-a-professor" on Mole day, pizza parties, charity fundraisers, and hosting the Spring ACS local Symposium. The organization also holds an extensive and expanding presence off campus. Our organization fosters an environment where members can develop and enrich their leadership and communication skills while serving the surrounding community.