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  • Bachelor of Science Major
  • Minor
  • Erie, Pennsylvania

Gannon’s chemistry graduates enjoy a nearly 100-percent job placement rate; recent employers include Thermo Fisher Scientific and the Pennsylvania State Crime Lab.

  • Students Conducting Experiments
  • GU Possibilities
    • Chemistry graduates have a nearly 100- percent job placement rate.
    • The School of Sciences offers a unique scholarship opportunity for high school students who attend the Fall Open House. The Gannon University Science Contest awards scholarships each year to top-performing students. Scholarships range in value. Past recipients have received awards of:
    • $12,000 ($3,000/year for four years at Gannon)
      $8,000 ($2,000/year for four years at Gannon)
      $4,000 ($1,000/year for four years at Gannon)

    • Gannon’s chemistry graduates enjoy a nearly 100-percent job placement rate. For example, one alumnus
      is employed at Thermo Fisher Scientific and another works at the Pennsylvania State Crime Lab.
    • Recent graduates are pursuing chemistry and biochemistry Ph.D.s at the University of Notre Dame, the University of Wisconsin, Colorado State University, and the City University of New York.
    • Our competitive graduates are studying at the LECOM School of Medicine, LECOM School of Pharmacy, and Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

    You Will Learn

    Chemistry majors investigate the properties and transformations of matter. The chemistry department actively engages its students in the five major areas of chemistry-- organic, physical, analytical, inorganic and biochemistry-- and our faculty’s expertise spans these specialties. Students in our department pursue a nationally recognized curriculum modeled after the recommendations of the American Chemical Society. They enjoy challenging core courses and interactive laboratory experiences, have access to modern scientific instrumentation, and can select coursework in related fields that aligns with their personal career goals. Our students enjoy exciting opportunities to conduct original scientific research with a faculty mentor, which often leads to publications or presentations. The department offers to its students the advantages of small class sizes, individual attention and frequent contact with faculty and staff members in learning and mentoring settings. The chemistry major provides students with a strong technical background, a diverse liberal studies education, and specialized research experiences that give graduates the skills necessary to pursue a broad range of opportunities and careers.


    You Will Experience

    All chemistry majors participate in undergraduate research with one of our experienced faculty members. Many students also participate in internship and research programs at universities, government agencies, and private industries, especially during the summer months. Recently, our students have gained experience at:

    • Brookhaven National Labs
    • Erie Water Works
    • Lake Erie Biofuels
    • LORD Corporation
    • Modern Industries
    • Sonneborn Industries
    • Texas A&M University
    • University of Michigan
    • University of West Virginia

    You Will Achieve

    There are many exciting career opportunities available to a graduates with a degree in chemistry. Some of these opportunities include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • industry (applied research and development; toxicology; technical sales and marketing)
    • academia (chemistry professor; high school chemistry teacher)
    • government (basic research; chemistry and the law; forensic chemistry; science policy and advocacy)
    • non-profit (chemistry in the arts; public health; environmental protection)
    • entrepreneurship (consulting)
    Graduates with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry are eligible to pursue graduate education in chemistry or related fields. Students pursuing a Ph.D. in chemical research are typically paid a stipend and do not pay tuition to the research university. Chemistry graduates are well positioned to pursue further education in a health-related field such as medicine, pharmacy and more.

    You Will Earn

    Salaries in the field vary depending on the location and type of organization.

    • Starting salary: $44,100
    • Mid-career salary: $84,100

    All salary information is compiled from data gathered from the Bureau of Labor Statistics ( and/or PayScale (  

    You Will Study

    Example Course Descriptions

    The chemistry department at Gannon University is committed to providing a high-quality scientific education and to mentoring our students in undergraduate research. Both of these components prepare our students for the rigors of graduate school or a career. Because research plays a central role in our students’ learning experience, upper-level chemistry students are required to participate in mentored research under the guidance of a faculty member. Seniors must complete at least two credits of undergraduate research taken in successive semesters. Some courses that assist students with their independent research include:

    CHEM 366: Structural Biochemistry

    This course focuses on a systematic study of the biologically important compounds including the amino acids, proteins, nucleic acids, enzymes, carbohydrates and lipids. Emphasis is placed on the structure, properties, syntheses, reactions and functions of these compounds.

    CHEM 408: Advanced Instrumental Analysis

    An in-depth examination of the major instrumental methods used in analytical chemistry, application of advanced chemical principles and fundamental instrumental concepts focusing on how they influence the precision and accuracy of the measurement aspect of analysis. Techniques examined include spectrophotometry, chromatography and electrochemistry. The role computers play in modern instruments is also examined. 

    Liberal Studies Core

    The Liberal Studies Core Curriculum is one reflection of Gannon University's commitment to its Catholic identity. The Core's design offers students a defined, integrated, shared experience as the foundation for their undergraduate program.