STEM subjects are leading innovation, and chemistry contributes to significant advancements in all areas of life, including healthcare, pharmaceuticals, technology, materials, alternative energies, renewable fuels and aerospace technology.

Your educational experiences are hands-on at Clarkson, because it’s not just about learning chemistry; it’s about doing chemistry. Courses in our undergraduate bachelor's degree program in Chemistry provide a thorough understanding of properties, composition and matter, making chemistry the epicenter of most disciplines at Clarkson.

As a Chemistry undergraduate student, you participate in small class settings with access to dedicated faculty — teachers and mentors who give you the personal attention you deserve. Our program encourages you to get involved in research early on and to discover that theory has real-world applications. Join us and discover what can come next in the world of chemistry.

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Chemistry Careers

What can you do with a Chemistry degree?
Clarkson University Class of 2020 100 percent placement rating

A bachelor's degree in Chemistry from Clarkson can lead to careers that span the full range of the chemical sciences and beyond, especially when combined with another discipline offered at the University.

Chemistry + Materials/Nanoscience
researchers, specialists and consultants in areas like forensics, product development (cosmetics, textiles, water, oil, paint, pigments, petroleum, polymers and plastics, semiconductors), drug development/pharmaceuticals, and nanochemistry

Chemistry + Environmental Science
researchers, specialists and consultants in environmental protection, waste management, toxicology, agriculture and food chemistry 

Chemistry + Business or Communications
chemical/biochemical businesses managers, laboratory managers, quality assurance and quality control specialists, legal professionals (regulatory affairs, science policy), technical sales reps and marketers, science writers and journalists, process managers, consultants, chemical information managers, public information and outreach coordinators

Chemistry + Health Sciences
pharmaceutical researchers and developers, medical practitioners (medical doctors, dentists, veterinarians, pharmacists, etc.), healthcare industry employees, medicinal chemists, and public health workers

Chemistry + Pre-Teaching 
K-12 chemistry teachers, college faculty professors/researchers

Employers and Graduate Schools

Strong Salaries & Employer Networks
Faculty in the Department of Chemistry and Biomolecular Science, have created a network over 380 partners in industry, government and research organizations to recruit our talented graduates. In recent years, Clarkson chemistry majors have been recruited to work at companies such as

  • Biogen
  • DEKA Research and Development
  • Ethera Biotech
  • Epic
  • Ichor Therapeutics
  • Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT
  • Mylan
  • Regeneron Pharmaceuticals
  • ThermoFisher Scientific
  • Unither Pharmaceuticals 

Attending Top Graduate Programs
Our graduates have gone on to a wide range of graduate programs, from a business-oriented MBA programs, to science- or environmental-oriented MS and/or PhD programs, to MD and similar healthcare programs. Clarkson offers a Master of Arts in Teaching program, several MS and PhD programs in the sciences and environmental sciences (including Chemistry), a range of MBA programs and three healthcare programs - Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Physician Assistant Studies. Chemistry graduates have also pursued graduate diplomas at other universities, like Boston University, Cornell University, Lake Erie College Of Osteopathic, SUNY Upstate Medical University, The Ohio State University and University Of New Haven.

Chemistry Curriculum & Academic Options

Major in Chemistry

The chemistry undergraduate bachelor's degree program is composed of 68 of the 120 required credits. This leaves 52 credits available for student electives and the Clarkson Common Experience. Chemistry majors take courses such as:

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Food Chemistry
  • Carbon Capture and Sequestration
  • Better Materials Through Chemistry
  • Intro to Biomaterials
  • Nanostructured Materials
Chemistry Core Requirements

Students majoring in chemistry are required to complete the following courses:

  • CM103 Structure and Bonding 
  • CM105* Chemistry Laboratory I (2 credits)
  • CM104 Chemical Equilibrium and Dynamics
  • CM106* Chemistry Laboratory II (2 credits)
  • CM121 Freshmen Seminar (1 credit)
  • CM221 Spectroscopy
  • CM223 Spectroscopy Laboratory
  • CM241 Organic Chemistry I
  • CM242 Organic Chemistry II
  • CM244 Organic Chemistry Laboratory I
  • CM300 Instrumental Laboratory
  • CM312 Inorganic Chemistry 
  • CM320 Separations and Electrochemistry 
  • CM345 Advanced Lab
  • CM371/ CM 371 Physical Chemistry I and II
  • PH 131/ PH 132 Physics I and II
  • MA 131/ MA 132 Calculus I and II
  • MA 232 Differential Equations 

* CM131 and CM132 may be used to satisfy the first-year chemistry requirements for the Chemistry BS degree. 

Professional Experience

The professional experience can include directed research in research labs with Chemistry & Biomolecular Science faculty in the fields of physical chemistry, organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry, electrochemistry, analytical chemistry, biochemistry, materials and colloid chemistry; and internships or co-ops at other universities and in industry settings, as well as with organizations specifically involved in chemistry-related efforts.

Chemistry Core Electives

The following electives are required to complete the chemistry major:

Biology Elective
Students must complete one 3-credit course from the biology (BY) subject area.

Statistics Elective
Students must complete one 3-credit course from the statistics (STAT) subject area.

Knowledge Area/University Course Electives
Students majoring in chemistry will have approximately 15 credit hours available to use for Knowledge Area and/or University Course electives.

Free Electives
Students majoring in chemistry will have approximately 32 credit hours available to use for courses of their choosing.

In their senior year, students who elect the research thesis option will be paired with faculty thesis advisors to support them in selecting a research topic which reflects students' focuses and interests. Students are also required to complete CM491 Senior Thesis (fall, 6 credits) and CM492 Senior Thesis (spring, 6 credits) and to submit a completed thesis.

Popular Minors & Combinations

Chemistry majors have the opportunity to explore minors and professional advising tracks that will complement the chemistry bachelor's degree. We also offer a chemistry minor, available to all students except those majoring in Chemistry or Biomolecular Science. View our recommendations below or learn more about all of Clarkson's minors, concentrations and professional advising tracks. 

Our Minors

Minors are programs where students take a smaller amount of credits in a particular area of study that complements the major. Pursuing one or more minors allows students to add another area of specialization outside the major. Minors typically require 15 or more credit hours of specified coursework. Clarkson offers 50 minors spanning all of our schools in engineering, arts, sciences, business, environmental studies and interdisciplinary programs. Students can also create their own minor through our "individually designed" minor option. 


Our Minors:


Professional Concentrations

Professional Concentrations are a way to build an area of specialized expertise within, or closely related to, their degree program major. Concentrations typically require approximately 15 credit hours of coursework. Clarkson offers over a dozen professional concentrations in arts, sciences, engineering, engineering management and environmental studies. 


Professional Concentrations:

Our Advising Tracks

Advising Tracks are a way for our students to prepare for further professional study in professional graduate school programs in health sciences and law. Students at Clarkson do not major in health sciences or law, but instead have special advising from Clarkson faculty and staff to ensure they are well prepared for applying to and entering their respective graduate programs. 


Advising Tracks:

Research Opportunities

Throughout your undergraduate chemistry studies, you have access to research laboratories where you can work alongside experienced graduate students and become a valued member of a professor's research group. Invariably, alumni tell us that time spent doing research with faculty turns out to be the most important learning experience of their college careers, and we like to make this the most important experience in your college career as well.

Examples of Chemistry research opportunities include:

  • working alongside Professor Silvana Andreescu using modern spectroscopic and electrochemical instrumentation to study molecular level interactions of nanoscale materials, and designing devices that are inexpensive, easy-to-use and have the required detection sensitivity and selectivity for routine applications.
  • focusing on proteomics investigation of various bodily fluids (sera, saliva, breast milk) for identification of biomarker signatures which are indicative of disease and/or disorder detection, or progression with Professor Costel Darie
  • doing research that develops new polymer chemistries and materials that have potential in many applications, including various nanotechnologies and biomedical materials, and in areas that require polymers with high degrees of chemical and physical specificity with Professor Devon Shipp.
  • being at the interface of chemistry and materials science with Professor Mario Wriedt in the design, synthesis, characterization and application of functional metal-organic framework (MOF) materials.

Internship and Co-Op Opportunities

On Campus

The undergraduate chemistry program at Clarkson has many research and professional experiences to offer you — both on- and off-site. For more information, please see the opportunities listed below.

CBS Research Faculty offer summer internships in their research laboratories to undergraduate students demonstrating interest and ability. Students gain invaluable experience working under the tutelage of professors, experienced graduate students and post-doctoral research associates.

Support and funding for on-site summer research experiences:

David A. Walsh '67 Undergraduate Student Research Fellowship: Awarded to support a summer-research experience in the Department of Chemistry & Biomolecular Science (CBS). Recipient will be an undergraduate student majoring in chemistry and/or biomolecular science, who will be returning to Clarkson for at least one full semester. Provides stipend, housing and research materials.

Honors Program students can apply to conduct project work during the summer in their fields of study with the support of faculty mentors. Depending on the program chosen, the Honors Program can provide on-campus housing, meal support and, in some circumstances, a stipend.

Community of Underrepresented Professional Opportunities (CUPO): The CUPO office provides research opportunities and other services to eligible students.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU): Offered by the National Science Foundation through its REU Sites program, these 10-week summer research programs engage a diverse group of undergraduate students in first-class research projects.


With the assistance of your student advisor, you can obtain valuable and field-relevant work experience away from the Clarkson University campus. Internships are available in a variety of industries, such as medical environments, institutes and laboratories, independent research facilities and privately owned businesses.

Some recent examples include the Trudeau Institute, Strong Memorial Hospital's Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory, Swift Labs, Procter & Gamble, Corning, Beckman Laser Institute, Goodyear, Intel and St. Gobain in North America.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU): Offered by the National Science Foundation through its REU Sites program, these 10-week summer research programs engage a diverse group of undergraduate students in first-class research projects. Clarkson chemistry students may have the opportunity to attend a REU program at other universities, such as Cornell, Columbia, Syracuse, Binghamton, Boston College and Boston University, among others.

What's your purpose? Achieve it here.