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Chemistry

Chemistry: Major

Holy Cross is a leader in chemistry education. In fact, the “Discovery Chemistry” lab-based guided inquiry style of teaching began at Holy Cross, and serves as a model for the national chemical education community. 

The curriculum provides students with a strong background in fundamental principles and theories of chemistry with hands-on experience using state-of-the-art laboratory equipment. The program is laboratory intensive, beginning with the Discovery Chemistry core courses in general and organic chemistry. Advanced courses allow students to develop the skills and gain knowledge needed to become effective scientists and independent researchers. The department has a very active research program, and faculty members are committed to giving students opportunities within their research. As of result of these opportunities, Holy Cross undergraduates regularly contribute to scientific publications and travel to professional conferences. 

Our formula for success has led the chemistry department to produce among the nation’s highest number of chemistry graduates and is a top baccalaureate origin for Ph.D.s in chemistry.

Program Highlights

 Students gain experience and knowledge in all the major areas of modern chemistry including organic, analytical, physical, inorganic, and biochemistry and have an opportunity to focus their program on a particular area of chemistry through research and elective courses. The department also provides:
  • A flexible major that, when completed together with one year of research, allows students to become accredited by the American Chemical Society
  • The opportunity to join the biochemistry concentration
  • The opportunity to become certified as a secondary or middle school chemistry teacher in Massachusetts by participating in the Teacher Education Program
Classroom
Learn more about the lab-based approach to teaching chemistry that began at Holy Cross and serves as a national model.
Students working in a lab
Collaborate on innovative research with professors on a range of topics in the field.
Smith Labs
The department is housed in the state-of-the-art integrated science complex and features modern instrumentation.

Chemistry News

A student stands in a dark lab with a professor

At Holy Cross, Professors Become Mentors

Apr 23, 2019

At Holy Cross, small class sizes and professors who are commitment to their students’ success make strong bonds between students and faculty members a characteristic element of the Holy Cross experience. From guiding students in independent lab work to fueling …

Students sit around a large table while one stands at a blackboard at the front of the room

No Matter the Path, Holy Cross Students Thrive

Mar 25, 2019

College can often feel like a linear journey — take a few classes, decide on a major, join a club or two, fulfill your requirements and graduate in four years. For many, though, that path is much less precise. Interested …

Elizabeth Landis, Matthew Gamber, Selina Gallo-Cruz, Alvaro Jarrin, Geoffrey Findlay, Daniel DiCenso, Shannon Stock, Ji Hao, and Denis Kennedy stand together in front of a fountain

Ten Faculty Members Receive Tenure in 2019

Feb 27, 2019

From researching fruit flies to reimagining the first commercially successful color film, College of the Holy Cross faculty members are making massive contributions to their fields — and to their classrooms. Hear a bit more from the 10 newly tenured …