The Muskingum University chemistry department’s laboratory intensive instructional program has been certified by the American Chemical Society since 1966. The program facilitates an understanding of the materials around us and the changes they undergo by providing students with the knowledge they need for an understanding of everyday experience and environmental and economic concerns.
Most chemistry majors apply for NSF-sponsored Research Experiences for Undergraduates, as well as for other research internships at various universities around the country. All of these internships involve original research into a chemical problem. A couple of examples of universities where students have worked in the past couple of years are Bowling Green State University and the University of Oregon.
All students who major in chemistry must complete a capstone requirement in chemistry research. In addition, students have the opportunity to work on research projects in the department beginning as early as their freshman year. The projects that the students work on can research ideas that the students themselves have proposed, or they can work on a research project proposed by the faculty members in the department. Students can also work on joint research projects that involve other programs such as biology, geology, psychology, environmental science and molecular biology.
Some examples of research projects conducted by students within the chemistry department in the past year are the following:
Polymer/Catalyst Composites for the Removal of Organic Pollutants in Wastewater
Investigation of Oxidase-Associated Reactions by an Enzyme-Coupling Fluorescent method
Removal of Heavy Metals from Chromated Copper Arsenate-Treated Lumber via Chelating Ligand Extraction
Preparation of Anhydrous Lanthanide Complexes as Precursors for the Synthesis of new Homoleptic M-Cyanide Complexes
The Muskie Summer Fellows Program also provides opportunities for students to conduct research with faculty members. Students receive a stipend as well as free housing for the twelve-week fellowship
The Muskingum University Chapter of the Student Affiliate of the American Chemical Society (ACS) has been active on campus for many years. Students may join this group as early as their first year. This group sponsors many activities, including field trips, chemical demonstrations, and fund-raising projects, and coordinates social activities at the beginning and end of the academic year and occasionally over holiday breaks.
The department typically employs 10-12 students each semester to work as tutors and graders for the introductory chemistry classes, and as assistants in the chemistry preparation laboratory, preparing solutions for various lab courses and setting up equipment for these labs.
Students periodically accompany faculty to regional and national professional meetings to present their research in the form of posters or papers. In addition, the department faculty arranges several opportunities throughout the year for students to attend seminars held by chemistry programs at nearby institutions.
Career Possibilities for Chemistry Major
Many graduates have found employment as chemists at various chemical companies. Some of these companies have paid for these individuals to pursue advanced or professional degrees such as an MBA or a law degree. The following are examples of recent employers of our graduates:
Procter & Gamble
Rohm & Haas
A few students have also found employment as chemists in governmental organizations such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Others have gone on to immediately pursue professional degrees in law and business upon graduation with their chemistry degree from Muskingum. A few students have moved on to earn professional qualifications in Pharmacy, and a few others have earned secondary licensure to teach chemistry at the high school level.