CHEMISTRY IS CALLED THE CENTRAL SCIENCE, AND FOR GOOD REASON. The inquiry into how matter is composed and combined is a foundation of all fields of scientific knowledge. The chemist's laboratory stretches from the interior of living cells to the most distant reaches of the universe. Between the extremes, chemistry is a key to many of our most crucial issues: environmental safety, global warming, renewable energy, bio- and chemical terrorism, medicine and fertility. At Hamilton, students don't just study chemistry; they help break new ground as members of a scientific community. A concentration in chemistry consists of eight courses: 120 or 125; 190; 255; one additional 200-level course; 321 or 322; 371; one additional 300- or 400-level course; and 551. In addition, two semesters of calculus and two semesters of physics (calculus-based physics recommended) are prerequisites for Chemistry 321 and 322. Students who are considering a concentration in chemistry are strongly encouraged to enroll in 120 or 125 in their first semester.
Students who plan to pursue graduate work or employment in chemistry or a related science are encouraged to satisfy the requirements for a degree certified by the American Chemical Society (ACS). In order to qualify for an ACS certified degree, students must take both 321 and 322 in addition to satisfying all other concentration requirements. Students who plan to attend graduate school in chemistry or chemically related fields are advised to take additional courses in chemistry, other sciences and mathematics. We invite all interested students to attend the departmental seminar series, which is a part of 551 and 552. Departmental honors are determined on the basis of distinguished coursework in chemistry and in the Senior Thesis.
A minor in chemistry consists of five courses: 120 or 125; 190; 255; 321 or 322; and one additional course at the 200-level or above. The minimum requirement in chemistry for preparation for medical school consists of 120 or 125; 190 and 255; and one additional course at the 200 level.