Introduction to the Department of Chemistry

The Harvey Mudd Department of Chemistry is dedicated to undergraduate education and close personal interaction with students. It represents all chemical fields and provides a diverse range of research interests. The department is committed to challenging coursework and extensive hands-on experience with modern instrumentation and computation, and provides a broad-based education with an emphasis on problem-solving skills.

Our Distinctive Features

  • PhD faculty teach all courses and laboratories
  • The department offers a major compatible with pursuing double majors or minors, study abroad and participation in extracurricular activities
  • We encourage research participation at the earliest point in one’s Harvey Mudd career
  • We integrate modern research-grade instrumentation and computational equipment in courses and research

The Chemistry Major

  • Provides classroom and laboratory instruction in the traditional fields of chemistry:
    • Analytical Chemistry
    • Biochemistry
    • Inorganic Chemistry
    • Organic Chemistry
    • Physical Chemistry
  • Allows exploration of specialized areas through elective courses
    • Bioorganic Chemistry
    • Biophysical Chemistry
    • Computational Chemistry
    • Industrial Chemistry
    • Lasers in Chemistry
    • Materials Science
    • Organometallic Chemistry
    • Surface Science
    • Synthetic Methods
  • Involves a senior research experience
  • Emphasizes development of problem-solving skills and communication skills
  • Leads to a Bachelor of Science degree certified by the American Chemical Society
  • Additional programs of study leading to ACS certification are available in Biochemistry, Chemical Education, and Chemical Physics

Our Graduates

  • More than 80 percent of chemistry graduates continue advanced study leading to the PhD degree
  • Highest ranked chemistry department for the percentage of graduates who have earned PhD degrees
  • Significant numbers of graduates have won National Science Foundation, Churchill, Watson, and Marshall Fellowships and a Rhodes Scholarship
  • Chemistry alumni hold positions of leadership in academe and industry
    • Faculty at Columbia, Penn State, Harvard, Johns-Hopkins, Elmhurst, Purdue, UC-Irvine, UC-San Diego, Colorado School of Mines, College of William and Mary, SUNY-Stony Brook, Macalester
    • Senior Editor of Science Magazine
    • Owner and Winemaker – Brander Vineyards
    • Facility Director, Molecular Foundry
    • CEO, Arc Scan
    • Vice President and Winemaker, E & J Gallo Winery
    • CEO, Fivefocal
    • CTO, Pfizer
    • Co-Founder, I/O Software

Read more about the career paths of various HMC Chemistry alumni.