Welcome to the Department of Chemistry

Welcome to the Chemistry department!

We are proud of all of the graduates of our program! We know many of you have travelled a long journey to graduation, and we celebrate you all. Here's a partial list of where our graduates have gone: Where are they now? 

Here are some fascinating news stories about chemistry (past and present):

  • The discovery of the elements was often a difficult path, as illustrated in this story about the discovery of Francium.
  • Advances in microscopy require a mix of chemistry, biology, and physics, as demonstrated in the work of the 2014 Chemistry Nobel prize winners.
  • Light shows up again in the 2014 Physics Nobel prize.

And there's a lot going on in space right now. The night of Sept. 27 there will be a total lunar eclipse, which will be visible in the Washington, DC area. The eclipse will start just after 8pm and achieve totality at 10:47pm. For more details, click here. In other space news, check out the latest pictures on Pluto from NASA's New Horizon probe. And closer to home, on Sept. 12, Expedition 44 safely returned from the International Space Station. For pictures and more information, check out NASA's page at https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/main/index.html.


 STEM University


Chemistry is one of the fundamental sciences for many areas of study. It provides exciting opportunities to investigate the interface between the real, observable world around us and the abstract realm of ideas. Combining experimental observations with theoretical deductions challenges the chemist to find a new understanding of our universe with a well-defined, ever-growing system of concepts. The order, symmetry and unity of the universe become clearer through the study of chemistry, which correlates scientific discovery with knowledge.

The mission of the Department of Chemistry is to provide an atmosphere of mentorship for the purpose of educating and producing well-rounded individuals who are socially, spiritually, and academically mature.

Career Opportunities

A chemistry major provides excellent preparation for students who wish to prepare for careers as biochemists, chemical engineers, chemists, dentists, medical technologists, pharmacists, physicians, and science teachers. Inasmuch as many of these careers require further study at the graduate or professional school level, the chemistry programs are designed to provide a broad and strong background in chemistry.

Programs Offered

Biochemistry (BS) Suggested 4-Year Track,
Chemistry (BA) Suggested 4-Year Track,
Chemistry (BS) Suggested 4-Year Track,
Chemistry Minor,
Applied Bioinformatics Minor,
Teacher Certification

Pre-professional programs

Students should choose their majors based on their principal abilities and interests, because most professional schools accept individuals on the basis of merit rather than on their choice of major. Those who plan to enter professional schools should consult with their academic adviser in addition to the appropriate pre-professional program coordinator, listed below.

An overall GPA of at least 3.0 is required for admission to most professional programs, although some require a GPA significantly above 3.0.

Students should work closely with their pre-professional coordinator to ensure that they are meeting all of the requirements and recommendations within their chosen field. It is the responsibility of the student to communicate with the professional schools they wish to attend and consult their bulletins for information concerning specific courses and tests required for admission. Credit earned by Advanced Placement or CLEP may not be accepted.

Listed below are program coordinators, and required courses, for pre-professional programs most frequently chosen by students at WAU:

Pre-Chiropractic, Melinda Ekkens-Villanueva, PhD  
Pre-Dental Hygiene, Melinda Ekkens-Villanueva, PhD prerequisite courses
Pre-Dentistry, Melinda Ekkens-Villanueva, PhD prerequisite courses
Pre-Medicine, Melinda Ekkens-Villanueva, PhD prerequisite courses
Pre-Occupational Therapy, Melvin Roberts, PhD prerequisite courses
Pre-Optometry, Melvin Roberts, PhD  
Pre-Pharmacy, Melvin Roberts, PhD prerequisite courses
  Nellie McKenzie, PharmD  
Pre-Physician Assistant, Melvin Roberts, PhD prerequisite courses
Pre-Physical Therapy, Melvin Roberts, PhD prerequisite courses
Pre-Public Health, Melinda Ekkens-Villanueva, PhD  
Pre-Veterinary Medicine, Melinda Ekkens-Villanueva, PhD prerequisite courses


Course Descriptions

Read the Department of Chemistry section in the Academic bulletin.

For more information about the department, please see below:

Admission Information

Progression requirements

Statement of Student Responsibility

Classes Taught by Chemistry Department Faculty

For news and stories, please see below:

If you're a pre-medicine student, you might find the Rice Premed Student Guide helpful; it contains a lot of important information for students on the pre-medicine track. Also, on their webpage you can find a link to a free MCAT study calendar.

Where are they now? Congratulations to our graduates!

Congratulations to our Honors Society Inductees!

Spring 2013 Chemistry Seminar Series

Department Information

L. Melvin Roberts, PhD
Dean Sadat-Aalaee, PhD

For program information, contact:

Dr. Melvin Roberts
Phone: 301-891-4228
Fax: 301-270-1618
E-mail: mroberts@wau.edu
Room S102D, Health Science Building