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Chemistry is often called the "Central Science," because chemical knowledge is essential not only to chemists, but also to biologists (through biochemistry, molecular biology, and environmental chemistry) and engineers (through materials science and polymers). A good knowledge of chemistry provides many options for graduate study and many options for career paths.
The study of chemistry can be divided into two parts: analysis and synthesis. Analysis determines the identities of the components of a real-world sample (a sample of polluted water, for example) and then measures how much of each component is present. Synthesis produces new, previously non-existent materials. Twenty-one million chemicals are known, and new ones are produced all the time. Will you synthesize one that reduces pollution? Cures a dreaded disease?
First-and second-year students interested in a chemistry major or minor are encouraged to discuss their career interests with members of the Department of Chemistry. This will allow good schedule planning, leading to on-time graduation.