BS/MS Environmental and Green Chemistry

 

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The tools that you gain when you pursue a degree in Environmental and Green Chemistry are the tools that you need to make a real and positive impact on our world.  The BS/MS program enables you to achieve those skills in a very effective and efficient way.

Why pursue this BS/MS?

 

Interested in careers in environmental science (environmental management and regulation), medical and veterinary professions, sustainability strategy and design of new products and processes that are more environmentally responsible?

 

Growing public awareness about the state of our environment, chemical product safety and new chemical regulatory policies is driving demand for employees trained in environmental and green chemistry. These new challenges necessitate that decision makers in business, government, and non-governmental organizations understand the fundamental physical science underlying both the environmental challenges we face and potential innovative solutions. The combined Bachelor of Science/Master of Science degree in Environmental and Green Chemistry will provide a unique opportunity for our students to obtain advanced training in these complementary disciplines in a shorter time than required to complete both degrees independently.

 

 

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Program Description

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PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The BS/MS program will provide students with a broad background in the basic divisions of chemistry: analytical, biochemistry, inorganic, organic, and physical, as well as an interdisciplinary curriculum that addresses evaluating the state of our environment and developing/assessing greener technologies that have positive potential environmental impact. By pursuing the two degrees in tandem students can shorten the total time course of study and benefit from long-term faculty advising. In addition, they can take advantage of more extensive research opportunities that allow them to get more extensive experience in research methods.

The program’s focus on environmental chemistry is synergistic with that of green chemistry, which requires the design new chemicals and chemical processes with minimal environmental impact. Unlike many existing graduate and certificate programs in environmental science, this curriculum will emphasize the basic underlying science and the emerging applications of these disciplines. In addition to combining elements from five core focus areas of environmental/green chemistry - energy, environmental analytical chemistry, air/water chemistry, green chemical processing and chemical toxicology - the program will leverage public health, science policy and business coursework to provide a broader perspective and strengthen students' communication and interpersonal skills. Furthermore, this program will allow students to customize their curriculum so as to attain their personal educational goals within the framework of the program. 

The program’s intended learning outcomes for students are:

  • Provide students with a broad background in the basic divisions of chemistry: analytical, biochemistry, inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry
  • Graduates attain a level of technical ability and knowledge in the fields of environmental/green chemistry and related social sciences to function as professionals in their discipline.
  • Graduates will gain experience in carrying out research using technical and problem solving skills to contribute to their field in the form of a capstone project.  The capstone experience will provide students an opportunity to independently identify a problem and devise appropriate methods for its solution, contributing original knowledge to the field. 
  • Graduates will gain communication and presentation skills that are consistent with professional standards.   
  • Graduates will be well-poised to obtain employment or continue education towards a Doctoral degree in chemistry, sustainability or related fields.

Industry is increasingly establishing departments aimed at sustainability practices in order to cope with the changing landscape of global environmental responsibility and our program is geared to address these changes.

Degree Requirements

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DEGREE REQUIREMENTS

The combined Bachelor of Science/Master of Science degree in Environmental and Green Chemistry will provide a unique opportunity for undergraduates to obtain advanced training in these complementary disciplines in a shorter time than required to complete both degrees independently. The following is a proposed course of study:

 

 


Suggested Program of Study:

First Year

   

CHEM 1111
CHEM 1112

General Chemistry I

choose one of the following:

MATH 1231
MATH 1232*

Single-Variable Calculus I

MATH 1220
MATH 1221

Calculus with Precalculus I

Second Year

   

CHEM 2122

Introductory Quantitative Analysis

CHEM 2151
CHEM 2153

Organic Chemistry I

CHEM 2152
CHEM 2154

Organic Chemistry II

PHYS 1021 or 1025

Physics I

PHYS 1022 or 1026

Physics II

MATH 1232 (if not taken in the first year)

Single-Variable Calculus II

Third Year

   

CHEM 2123

Introductory Quantitative Analysis Laboratory

CHEM 3171
CHEM 3172

Physical Chemistry I

CHEM 3173

Physical Chemistry Laboratory

1 elective 

See selection from Table 1

CHEM 4122

Instrumental Analytical Chemistry

Fourth Year

   

CHEM 3165

Biochemistry I

CHEM 4134

Descriptive Inorganic Chemistry

Choose two of the following master’s level courses for a total of 6 credits plus the elective

 

CHEM 6280

Energy and the Environment

CHEM 6281

Environmental Chemistry: Water, Air and Soil

CHEM 6282

Green Industrial Chemistry

CHEM 6283

Designing Safer Chemicals

CHEM 6284

Environmental Analytical Chemistry (lab)

 

 

1 ELECTIVE

See below

 

 

Fifth Year

Choose three of the following master’s level courses plus the Capstone Seminar and electives

CHEM 6280

Energy and the Environment

CHEM 6281

Environmental Chemistry: Water, Air and Soil

CHEM 6282

Green Industrial Chemistry

CHEM 6283

Designing Safer Chemicals

CHEM 6284

Environmental Analytical Chemistry (lab)

 

 

CHEM 6298

Capstone Seminar

3 ELECTIVES

See below

 

 


Electives: Electives are usually selected either to broaden familiarity with environmental and green chemistry issues, or to specialize in a particular area of expertise. They offer students the chance to tailor the program to their specific needs and interests. Students must complete a total of 12 credits of elective courses (4 x 3-credit courses). Students can select elective courses that are relevant to the Program from the wide spectrum of course offerings of the University with approval from the Program Director.

Capstone Course:  Each student will be required to participate in a capstone course during the final semester of the program. The capstone experience will aim to provide an opportunity to identify and solve a real world scientific problem. It will also enforce the interpersonal and communication skills needed to work collaboratively with other scientists and translate science for non-scientists. Finally, the capstone experience will integrate skills and knowledge gained from previous courses.

The experience can take the form of a group-based project in partnership with an external partner/client, such as a government agency or not-for-profit group, or a research project in the laboratory of a faculty member of the Chemistry department. The group projects will require students to engage in research and apply the multi-disciplinary knowledge they have acquired during their program of study to a real-world scientific question related to environmental or sustainability issues. Students will work in small teams on a project and will be mentored by an external partner/client as well as the Program Director. The projects will result in a written report and a formal presentation of research results to both the external client and faculty. 

Some of the partner institutions that will serve as external partners/clients for the group projects shall include:

  • U. S. Environmental Protection Agency

  • Department of Energy

  • Food and Drug Administration

  • National Institute for Environmental and Health Sciences

  • Private consulting practices in DC: ToxServices, SciVera, Sustainability A to Z

  • Industry groups/roundtables: GC3 Council, American Chemical Society Institute for Green Chemistry

  • NGOs: Environmental Defense Fund, Environmental Working Group, Natural Resources Commission

If students select to carry out a one-semester research project in the laboratory of a member of the Chemistry department, they will work closely with the faculty member to outline realistic goals for the project. The implementation of the research activity will typically involve laboratory experience in combination with literature research. The projects will result in a written report and a formal presentation of research results to the research team and faculty.

 

Careers with this Degree

Graduates are expected to find employment not only as well-rounded chemists in government and the private sector, but will be sought after as environmental and sustainability consultants, health professionals, new product developers, engineers, or project managers across industries and business sectors.  Industry is increasingly establishing departments aimed at sustainability practices in order to cope with the changing landscape of global environmental responsibility.

 

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We look forward to seeing you in D.C., where the future of our environmental policy is being decided!