College of Arts & Sciences Chemistry


With 16 faculty and approximately 80 chemistry majors, we are small enough to focus on the needs of individual students but large enough to provide the resources for a rich and varied educational environment. 


Scholarship Opportunities abound here, due to the generous support of our past graduates and friends of the department. One of our main strengths is our excellent students! In recent years, seven of our undergraduates have been awarded Goldwater Scholarships and six have been awarded NSF Graduate Research Fellowships.

Research Opportunities

We emphasize the importance of Research at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. All faculty members are actively engaged in research, providing opportunities for students to learn and grow outside of the traditional classroom. USD's Chemistry Department is home to a National Science Foundation (NSF) Research Experiences for Undergraduate (REU) and Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) sites, providing research and summer employment opportunities for students.

Career Opportunities

Our chemistry Majors enjoy a wide variety of career opportunities upon graduation. Recent graduates have attended medical school (University of Iowa, University of Nebraska Medical Center, USD, Baylor), dental school (University of Minnesota, Indiana, Creighton) and top graduate programs in chemistry or biochemistry (UC-Berkeley, Iowa State University, Stanford). Many have also chosen to enter the job market and are enjoying successful careers at companies like Novartis Pharmaceuticals and CIMA Laboratories, among others. 

Resources and Facilities

Over one million dollars' worth of equipment is accessible to all students engaged in research projects with faculty, as well as a machine shop and glassblowing facility. We maintain Many Instruments for student use. Numerous microcomputers, scattered throughout the department, are connected to the local network. We also subscribe to more than 70 journals, available both in the I.D. Weeks Library and online.

Our department and research facilities are located in the Churchill-Haines and Pardee Laboratories on campus.

Chemistry Club

The Chemistry Club goal is to make chemistry more exciting and intriguing for a wide variety of students. The group sponsors multiple activities off- and on-campus, such as an elementary outreach program and a Christmas/Welcome Back party with the Chemistry Department faculty.

Estee Lecture Series

Established in 1991, the Estee Lecture at USD is named in honor of Dr. Charles R. Estee, who served the Department of Chemistry for 50 years, beginning in 1947. The Estee Lecture is dedicated to the topic of chemical education.

Haines Lecture Series

Established in 1956, the Haines Lecture at USD is named in honor of Professor Arthur L. Haines, who served the Department of Chemistry for 71 years, beginning in 1904.