What is chemistry?

Chemistry, the study of all matter [everything!] and their changes, is the central science. That is to say that almost all science-related majors, from the biological sciences to the physical sciences, require an early and basic sequence of chemistry courses as foundational to their curriculum. A chemistry major, therefore, prepares the student for a very wide variety of science based studies and careers.

Success factors

Chemistry draws heavily on “both sides of the brain”, utilizing, stimulating and developing both conceptual and quantitative thinking—making for an academically “whole” person. Chemistry will be essential to success for students majoring in pre-med, engineering, biology, nursing or physics, for example. And, if you are looking to be a soil scientist, an industrial hygienist, a perfumer, a hydrologist or a practitioner in any one of scores of related occupations, including a high school or college chemistry teacher, you will want to consider becoming a chemistry major. Many chemists work in chemical manufacturing firms, which produce plastics and synthetic materials, pharmaceuticals, soaps and cleaners, paints, industrial organic chemicals and other miscellaneous chemical products. Chemists also research in health and agriculture fields and work for testing services and educational institutions.

Career possibilities

Biology: Cell biology, Microbiology, Anatomy, Physiology, Genetics; Biochemistry: Molecular biology, Immunology, Endocrinology, Genetic engineering; Medicine and Allied Health Sciences: Pharmacology, Nutrition, Clinical chemistry, Radiology; Nuclear Chemistry: Radiochemistry, Body imaging, Nuclear medicine; Physics: Atomic and nuclear physics, Quantum mechanics, Spectroscopy, Materials science, Biomechanics; Astronomy; Geology; Environmental Science: Ecology, pollution studies; Plant Sciences: Botany, Agronomy

“At Hesston College, I learned more than just ions, solubility products and nucleophilic reaction mechanisms. I learned to appreciate and share the passion for chemistry and experienced awe at the complexity yet simplicity of a remarkable science that affects us all. Hesston taught me how to change and inspire the lives of others through a field called chemistry.” — Calvin Swartzendruber, class of 1991, high school chemistry and physics teacher

Majoring in chemistry

Chemistry majors at Hesston College have opportunities to be peer tutors in their chemistry courses and, as sophomores, to become chemistry laboratory assistants.

Chemistry curriculum

Taking your first college chemistry courses at Hesston College will enable you to fulfill the basic chemistry requirements for a plethora of fields. For science and related majors, Hesston College offers a full year of General Chemistry and a full year of Organic Chemistry. These four semesters of chemistry form a solid foundation of chemical knowledge that will serve students well as they transfer and continue - fully prepared - in their science and science-related studies at four-year colleges and universities.

Sample curriculum – associate degree in chemistry

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