Majors & Minors

Chemistry and Biochemistry

The Chemistry and Biochemistry Department provides a variety of educational experiences for students interested in studying chemistry in an expanded liberal arts environment. Our accomplished faculty and well-equipped teaching and research laboratories allow us to successfully prepare students for placement into top-tier graduate and medical schools.  Three of our recent chemistry graduates were awarded highly competitive Graduate Research Fellowships from the National Science Foundation (NSF).


Emily Niemeyer, PhD

Professor & Chair



Emily Niemeyer, PhD

Professor & Chair

Chemistry and Biochemistry
Chemistry and Biochemistry (Credit: Southwestern University)

The Department is accredited by the American Chemical Society (ACS) and offers a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees in Chemistry and Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry as well as a minor in chemistry. Our curriculum presents a wide range of course choices, including electives in medicinal and environmental chemistry. Our laboratory courses involve inquiry-based, as well as community-based projects that provide a rich group learning experience.

Numerous competitive external grants from such agencies as the Robert A. Welch Foundation, the Merck Company Foundation, the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation, and the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Foundation enhanced our vibrant student-faculty collaborative research program. Additionally, Southwestern students and faculty have co-authored publications in several major peer-reviewed journals and regularly present their research at national meetings of the American Chemical Society.


Featured Alumni Stories

F. Fleming Crim ’69

F. Fleming Crim ’69, Medal of Honor

Since 2013, F. Fleming Crim ’69 has been the Assistant Director for Mathematical and Physical Sciences (MPS) at the National Science Foundation (NSF), where he leads a staff of 160 and has an annual budget of $1.3 billion. MPS supports core research in astronomy, chemistry, physics, material science and mathematics; in his role, Crim oversees policy decisions for some of the most fundamental and creative science efforts in the United States.

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Chemistry & Biochemistry News


Patrick Flanigan

Patrick Flanigan, sees himself as a mad scientist and considering his biochemistry major, as well as all he was involved in at Southwestern, one can see why. Patrick was an undergraduate researcher and chemistry tutor, a resident assistant, captain of the swim team, a healthcare volunteer, and a lifeguard.

Taylor Bailey, Class of 2017, and Brad Epley, Chief Conservator at the Menil Collection.


Southwestern Senior Gains Rare Undergraduate Experience at Menil Collection

Taylor Bailey changes career path from art therapy to art conservation, lands door-opening summer internship opportunity through Southwestern connection.