The Bachelor of Science in Environmental Chemistry at St. Edward’s prepares you for careers that help solve critical environmental problems in such areas as climate change, energy, waste/recycling, air and water pollution, and environmental disasters. We emphasize experiential learning. You’ll enroll in at least two semesters of research courses and join a student-faculty research group with the goal of producing and presenting professional-level work.
Students benefit from spacious, open-lab environments in the John Brooks Williams Natural Sciences Center and access to state-of-the-art instrumentation for innovative and collaborative research. St. Edward’s is among the best-equipped small-college natural science programs in the country.
Bachelor of Science in Environmental Chemistry
As a BS in Environmental Chemistry major, you’ll explore the effects chemical substances have on the earth’s ecosystems. You’ll learn to tackle environmental problems by addressing the underlying chemical processes that drive changes within the natural world. Building on your passion for the natural sciences, this program gives you extensive expertise in chemistry, as well as a general knowledge of environmental science.
Graduates with a BS in Environmental Chemistry are employed by private consulting firms, corporations or research labs to help clean up yesterday’s waste and prevent tomorrow’s pollution. They may help reduce the depletion of natural materials by creating synthetic substitutes or developing new recycling technologies. Environmental chemists may even work with governmental agencies to create and implement environmental policies. Advanced degrees are required for greater research opportunities.
Some students select this degree to prepare for graduate studies in chemistry or environmental science. Close interaction with faculty at St. Edward’s — and time spent in classes, labs, advising sessions and program events — allows you to learn more about options for careers and graduate work.
For detailed descriptions and timing of courses, please see the Undergraduate Bulletin (course catalog).
I. FOUNDATION COURSES (21 CREDIT HOURS):
• Rhetoric and Composition I and II*
• College Mathematics
• Computational Skills
• Oral Communication
• Modern Language
II. CULTURAL FOUNDATIONS (18 CREDIT HOURS):
• Literature and Human Experience
• Understanding and Appreciating Arts
• American Experience
• American Dilemmas*
• History and Evolution of Global Processes
• Contemporary World Issues
III. MISSION COURSES (15 CREDIT HOURS):
• The Human Experience
• Religious Studies/Philosophy
• Science in Perspective
• Science in Depth
IV. CORE COURSES (68 CREDIT HOURS):
Environmental Science and Policy Required Courses
• Environmental Science
• Environmental Geology
• Environmental Ethics
• Environmental Politics and Policy
Chemistry Required Courses
• General Chemistry, Lab
• Chemistry Seminar
• Analytical Chemistry, Lab
• Organic Chemistry I, Lab
• Organic Chemistry II
• Spectroscopic, Chromatographic and Electrochemical Methods or Biochemistry I
• Structural Inorganic Chemistry or Thermodynamics and Kinetics
• Quantum Mechanics and Spectroscopy
• Chemical Instrumentation Lab
• Research (three times)
• Internship in Environmental Chemistry (twice)
• Upper-division elective
V. SUPPORTING COURSES (22 CREDIT HOURS):
• General Biology: Cells, Genetics and Organ Systems, Lab
• Mechanics and Waves, Lab
• Electricity, Magnetism and Optics, Lab
• Calculus I, Lab
• Calculus II
• History and Philosophy of Science
VI. CAPSTONE COURSE (3 CREDIT HOURS)
VII. GRADUATION CERTIFICATION:
You must register for this course in your graduating term to be certified for graduation.
* These courses are prerequisites for Capstone.
At St. Edward’s, you’ll participate in professional-level research typically reserved for graduate students at larger universities. Students work alongside professors on a variety of subjects within environmental chemistry. Engaging in professional-level research will sharpen your résumé, build your confidence and skills, and prepare you for graduate studies and your career.
Our students present their work — and win awards — at local, regional and national conferences, including these:
- American Chemical Society – National
- American Chemical Society – Southwest Region
- Texas Academy of Science
Students also present at St. Edward’s University events:
- Honors Thesis Symposium
- McNair Scholars Conference
- Senior Seminar Symposium in the School of Natural Sciences
- Symposium for Undergraduate Research and Creative Expression (SOURCE)