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Environmental Chemistry

  • Bachelor of Science
  • Minor

The Environmental Chemistry Program

The environmental chemistry program at Saint Vincent College seeks to provide students with a solid foundation in environmental chemistry set in the broad context of the liberal arts. We provide our graduates with knowledge of chemical principles, laboratory skills, communication skills and research experience so that they can pursue a career in environmental chemistry. 

What Can I Do With a Degree in Environmental Chemistry?

Majoring in environmental chemistry is an ideal start to your career in the sciences. The many opportunities available at Saint Vincent College during your college years will ensure success after graduation.

  • In addition to our Bachelor of Science degree in environmental chemistry, we also offer minors in chemistry, biochemistry and environmental chemistry, along with a secondary school teaching certification in chemistry.

  • Our curriculum includes common foundation courses, a strong emphasis on oral/written communication skills and group work and a required senior research project.

  • Students have many opportunities for “hands-on” work with instrumentation in state-of-the-art laboratories. These labs feature $500,000 worth of new equipment.

  • Environmental Chemistry majors benefit from opportunities to be involved with the award-winning Environmental Education Center and Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve.

  • Students have opportunities to get involved in the Saint Vincent College Student Affiliate Chapter of the American Chemical Society (ACS), which has been recognized for a number of years by the ACS for its quality program.  

Curriculum Requirements

  • Requirements

    Major Requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Environmental Chemistry

    Environmental Chemistry Major Requirements (73 credits)
    BL 150,152 General Biology I and II - 6 credits
    CH 101-102 General Chemistry I, II* - 6 credits
    CH 103-104 General Chemistry Laboratory I, II* - 2 credits
    ES 150 Earth Systems Science - 3 credits
    ES 152 Earth Systems Science Laboratory - 1 credit
    CH 216 Quantitative Analysis-  3 credits
    CH 218 Quantitative Analysis Laboratory - 1 credit
    CH 221-222 Organic Chemistry I, II - 6 credits
    CH 223-224 Organic Chemistry Laboratory I, II - 2 credits
    CH 228 Introduction to Biochemistry - 3 credits
    CH 231-232 Physical Chemistry I, II - 6 credits
    CH 233 Physical Chemistry I Laboratory - 1 credit
    CH 242 Instrumental Analysis - 2 credits
    CH 276 Advanced Environmental Chemistry -23 credits
    CH 277 Methods of Environmental Analysis - 2 credits
    CH 282 Advanced Physical Methods - 2 credits
    CH 301 Research Laboratory - 2 credits
    CH 300, 302 Research Seminar I, II - 2 credits
    MA 111-113 Calculus I, II, III* - 12 credits
    PH 111-112 General Physics I, II - 6 credits
    PH 113-114 General Physics Laboratory I, II - 2 credits

    *General Chemistry I & II with Laboratory fulfill the natural science core requirement. Calculus I fulfills the mathematics core requirement.

    Recommended Core Curriculum courses:
    SO 161 Environmental Sociology - 3 credits
    PS 390 Environmental Law - 3 credits
    EL 111 Green Writing: Literature and the Environment - 3 credits

    Electives (3 credits) 

  • Typical Freshman Schedule

    Fall
    CH 101 General Chemistry I - 3 credits
    CH 103 General Chemistry I Laboratory - 1 credit
    MA 111 Calculus I - 4 credits
    EL 102 Language & Rhetoric - 3 credits
    Core course - 3 credits
    First Year Seminary - 1 credit
    Total Fall: 15 credits

    Spring
    CH 102 General Chemistry II - 3 credits
    CH 104 General Chemistry II Laboratory - 1 credit
    MA 112 Calculus II - 4 credits
    ES 150 Earth Systems Science - 3 credits
    ES 152 Earth Systems Science Laboratory - 1 credit
    TH 119 First Theology - 3 credits
    Total Spring: 15 credits

    Total Freshman Year: 30 credits 

    All students will take one three (3) credit course designated as a Freshman Seminar which will satisfy a Core Curriculum requirement.

Program Highlights

Results

Environmental Chemistry Results
  • Students in our department get hands-on instruction with instrumentation and equipment that is widely used in the chemical industry, government labs and graduate schools. In addition, the department has recently acquired an inert atmosphere glovebox, a scanning electron microscope (SEM) and an ion chromatograph.
     
  • 100 percent of seniors graduating with a degree in Chemistry who have applied to graduate school have been accepted. 56 percent of our seniors who apply to a health profession school are accepted (the national average is about 44 percent). 48 percent of our students who are looking for jobs are employed by the time they graduate.
     
  • Many of our students participate in summer internships either in government (Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection), industry (PPG, Johnson-Matthey, R.J. Lee Group) or at larger research universities (University of Pittsburgh, University of Montana, The Ohio State University).
     
  • The Saint Vincent College chemistry club is a Student Affiliate chapter of the American Chemical Society (ACS) and has received awards of commendation from ACS for its service to the community, educational outreach and social events for the past eleven years.
     
  • The chemistry department participated in the CLP Emerging Scholars program this past summer, where five students who had just completed their first year conducted chemical research with two faculty members.

Internships and Careers in Environmental Chemistry

Our environmental chemistry program provides graduates with a solid basis for a successful career in the field. After graduating from Saint Vincent College, our students have gone on to:

  • Conduct chemical analysis and formulation at PPG Industries, Tetra Tech, Pace Analytical, Dow Chemical, Westinghouse, Alcoa, Mylan Laboratories and U.S. Steel.

  • Work in environmental government agencies such as local conservation districts and the Department of Environmental Protection.
     
  • Complete graduate work at institutions such as Johns Hopkins University, University of Pittsburgh, West Virginia University, Lehigh University, Ohio State University, Virginia Tech, University of Minnesota, Penn State, University of Florida, Michigan State, Cornell University and the University of Georgia.