Alyssa Smale discusses her research on the forensic analysis of nail polish at crime scenes.
About Chemistry at LVC
As an LVC chemistry student, you'll focus on the principal areas of chemistry and learn to think creatively, solve complex problems, and perform detailed analyses. Early on, you’ll put theory into practice through internships and hands-on applications using cutting-edge equipment in the state-of-the-art Neidig-Garber Science Center. You will also have the opportunity to carry out an extended research project in collaboration and participate in summer research, even before your first semester through Research First.
Recent graduates have gone on to work for the National Institutes of Health, Nestle Purina Pet Care, Hershey Medical Center, Exelon Nuclear, Glaxo SmithKline, and Eurofins Laboratories. Others have pursued advanced degrees at Johns Hopkins University, Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania, Penn State University, and the University of California at Berkeley.
Our alumni do well in their careers because they've collaborated intensively with faculty LVC chemistry on research projects (75 in the last five years!) and presented their research at conferences in California, Colorado, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, and even Budapest, Hungary.
LVC's Chemistry Department received the 2016 Award for Outstanding Institutional Practice in Student Learning Outcomes from the Council for Higher Education Accreditation—and we were the only institution in the U.S. to earn this distinction. The department has a long-standing history of using national benchmarking exams such as the ETS-Major Field Exam in Chemistry and the ACS Subject Exams to assess student learning. Graduates from the past 10 years of our programs have scored in the top quartile nationally on the ETS Exam. In addition, the program has received more than $1 million in grants in the past decade to support undergraduate research, purchase instrumentation, develop curricula, and provide scholarship aid. Faculty have received grants from the National Science Foundation, Petroleum Research Fund, Merck/AAAS, and Research Corporation. These third-party endorsements speak to the quality of our program.
LVC has fantastic science professors—they all came from competitive Ph.D. programs, and they pushed me to succeed. It was the one-on-one mentoring and dedication I received from my professors that helped me stand out.