Chemistry & Biochemistry

Welch Summer Research Program

 Since 1985, the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department has received a research grant from the Robert A. Welch Foundation that helps provide equipment and stipends for students conducting research during the summer.

Each Welch scholar works closely with the faculty mentor for an eight week period over the summer. These projects provide research opportunities in the areas of medicinal, organic, analytical, environmental, inorganic and biochemistry. Students often continue working on these projects the following year and use this research experience as the basis for their Chemistry and Biochemistry capstone. In addition, Welch scholars have the opportunity to present their results the following year at national meetings.

Summer activities

The summer activities have been carefully designed to engage students in a scientific learning community composed of students and faculty, to aid in their development of necessary skills, and to create awareness of important scientific issues and career choices. Past activities have included training sessions on preparing scientific posters and giving oral presentations, informal presentations on research projects, and discussions on ethical issues in science.

Conclusion of the program

Each student will be required to write a technical report which outlines the background and significance of the research project, experimental design and methodology, and results. During the spring semester of the following year, students participate in the Southwestern’s Student Works Symposium where students showcase their research posters to the campus community.

Application process

During the fall semester or early spring, the department hosts an information session about the available research opportunities supported by The Welch Foundation. Interested Students should meet with the professors to further discuss the research projects and submit an application to the department chair (FJS 317). Students will be accepted based on the strength of their application, interview with the faculty member, research interests, training, and course work. Approximately ten to twelve students participate in the summer program each year.