Welcome from the Chair

Welcome to Our Wonderful World of Atoms and Molecules!

The Department of Chemistry at Michigan Technological University is committed to excellence in undergraduate and graduate education through an integrated program with basic and applied research across a wide spectrum of chemistry sub-disciplines.

Chemistry delves into the study of all things material; and attempts to uncover the atomic and molecular causes for the behavior of materials.  It is a core science that transcends and underpins the physical sciences, the life sciences, applied sciences and many aspects of engineering.  Chemists investigate the molecular origins of diseases and signatures of environmental processes.  Other examples of chemical applications include agriculture and food production; drug discovery; testing and analysis; design of new, high-performance materials; environmental chemistry; and green chemistry for sustainable manufacturing. Cheminformatics, a newly evolving field of chemistry, creates, catalogs and organizes molecular structures and properties, providing data sets rich in information that can be analyzed through statistics-based, computer aided experiments leading to an understanding of material behavior based on establishing relationships between molecular and bulk properties.  Our department takes special pride in promoting undergraduate research, where the student works side-by-side with graduate students and their professor performing cutting-edge research leading to co-authored publications in prestigious national and international journals.

Come, explore our website and take the first step into our fascinating world of chemistry!

Undergraduate Education

Our undergraduate offerings include bachelor’s degrees in pharmaceutical chemistry, biochemistry and molecular biology, and cheminformatics, in addition to our ACS-certified chemistry degree. Our degree programs provide preparation for a career in the chemical industry or the government, graduate school, health programs including medical school, and law school. The department’s innovative Studio Lab provides a supportive learning environment for chemistry majors.

The department has connections with high-profile employers, such as Los Alamos National Laboratory, who offer co-op and internship opportunities.

We have a dynamic group of students in our department, many of whom participate in undergraduate research. We're always looking for future chemists—could you be one? Drop us a line, schedule a visit, or apply to Michigan Tech today.

Graduate Education

Opportunities in graduate education include an MS and a PhD in Chemistry; interdisciplinary PhD programs in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Atmospheric Sciences, and Environmental Engineering; and a Peace Corps Master's International program, which offers an MS in Applied Science Education in conjunction with Peace Corps service.

The new Chemistry Accelerated Master’s program allows students to simultaneously earn an MS in Chemistry along with any bachelor’s degree offered by the department in five years of study.

Our graduate students interact closely with a faculty advisor in research groups of two to six people. Research is often interdisciplinary in nature. New graduate students may apply for open GRA and GTA positions in research groups directly through the Graduate School.

Innovative Research

Our creative, enthusiastic faculty lead externally funded research projects that actively engage graduate-level students. We have several research groups in multiple areas of chemistry, including biochemistry, organic chemistry, and computational chemistry. All of our faculty members welcome undergraduate researchers into their groups. Once students master lab techniques and safety, they have the freedom to conduct individual research.

Departmental research has been expanding boundaries in areas as diverse as molecular probes in medicinal chemistry; design of chiral ligands and synthesis of combinatorial libraries; polymer synthesis and applications of nanoparticles, nanofibers, and bio-composites; composition of aerosol particles; and vibrational spectroscopy of solid-state structures in batteries.

Outstanding Alumni

Our alumni include Nobel Peace Prize laureate Melvin Calvin, who was one of three scientists to first map the chemical process that takes place during photosynthesis (known as “the Calvin cycle”). In 2011, Calvin’s image appeared on a commemorative US postage stamp in recognition of this pioneering work. Department alumni have been hired by companies including Kimberly-Clark, Sigma-Aldrich, and Amgen, plus a number of small start-ups; universities and colleges worldwide; and government labs including Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Los Alamos National Laboratory.

We want to hear from our alumni! Let us know what you're up to, send us a note, come for a visit, or catch up with us at a conference. Network with your colleagues and classmates through Alumni Relations.

Feel free to contact me with any questions or feedback.

Professor Cary F. Chabalowski, Department Chair