Bachelor of Sciences in Chemistry

The Chemistry program is part of the Natural Science Department that is housed in the Jeffords Science Center. Chemistry is the study of the properties of matter and the ways in which matter interacts, combines and changes. It is inherently interdisciplinary in nature, with connections to the life sciences, geology, physics, and mathematics.


Core courses in the Chemistry program include Organic Chemistry, Analytical Chemistry, and Physical Chemistry, which gives you training in areas that are directly relevant to jobs available in the field. Our four-year plan in Chemistry is a simple guide to your anticipated schedule in the major. During your second and third semesters, you will have the opportunity to participate in Pathways to Science and Science Colloquium, which introduces students to guest scientists in academia and industry in order to expose students to the numerous opportunities available beyond Castleton. As a small institution, we are able to provide all students access to our state-of-the-art instrumentation in both our teaching and research labs.


Small class sizes and the laboratory components of our courses ensure a hands-on, experiential learning environment. From compound identification, synthesis and purification skills to analyzing the composition of complex environmental samples, students acquire and practice fundamental skills required in the field of chemistry. The interdisciplinary nature of our department enables students to explore the connections of chemistry to other areas of natural science.


Chemistry majors are encouraged to participate in either internships or independent research in their field of study during their time at Castleton. Our faculty have diverse research interests. Some of this research is funded externally through grants awarded to our faculty where students have the opportunity to work intensively with faculty over the summer months and get paid a stipend. It is strongly recommended that students who wish to pursue graduate studies work with our faculty on independent projects. Some of the recent student research related to chemistry include: monitoring nutrient export in the Castleton River, characterizing dissolved organic matter via fluorescence, determination of the indirect photochemical decay of BPA and biochemical characterization of enzymes used in biofuel production. Nearly all of our students that participate in research present their work at the Annual Castleton Scholars Celebration and at various regional and national conferences.


With a B.S. in Chemistry, you will have the ability to pursue both laboratory and field careers in government, industry, and the non-profit sector. This program also prepares you for careers and professional or graduate degree programs in biology, chemistry, pharmacology and medicine, as well as analytical chemistry, environmental remediation and engineering, laboratory positions, and other environmentally relevant fields. Recently, our students have moved on to attend graduate school for their Masters and Doctorates, have entered medical school, or have obtained jobs with government agencies, such as the FDA.

All graduates in this program that earn a GPA of 2.75 or higher (and meet all minimum requirements of the agreement) are guaranteed admission and discounted tuition to the Norwich University Master of Civil Engineering program (including Environmental/Water Resources Engineering).