The mission of the Department of Chemistry is to conduct world-class, groundbreaking research in the chemical sciences while offering the highest quality of education to undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral associates. The department's leadership in research includes the traditional areas of physical, analytical, inorganic, and organic chemistry, and has rapidly evolved to encompass environmental chemistry, chemical biology, biophysical chemistry, soft and hard materials chemistry, and nanotechnology. The Department of Chemistry prides itself on its highly interactive, diverse, and collegial scientific environment. Our emphasis on collaboration connects us to colleagues across campus, around the country, and throughout the world.
The undergraduate chemistry major leads to a bachelor of science or a bachelor of arts degree awarded by the College of Letters & Science. The curriculum provides excellent preparation in chemistry, along with a wide breadth of liberal arts coursework. At the same time, the program provides significant opportunities for students to participate in scientific inquiry, within both laboratory courses and research laboratories. Students from other colleges within the university may pursue the chemistry major as an additional major. When pursuing a chemistry major, the undergraduate student must meet university general education requirements and breadth requirements of their own college, along with the specific requirements for the chemistry major.
The chemistry major prepares graduates for a wide variety of careers in the chemical and related industries (e.g., consumer and agricultural products, materials, energy, petroleum, paper, and food), as well as environmental, pharmaceutical, and other health-related sciences. Combined with a master's program in secondary education, the major qualifies the student to teach chemistry in secondary schools. The major prepares students for graduate-level work in chemistry, chemical physics, biochemistry, biophysics, materials chemistry, and other related fields. Students who excel in undergraduate chemistry coursework are able to obtain funding for graduate studies in chemistry and related sciences through teaching or research assistantships and fellowships. Some chemistry major graduates go on to professional schools to study medicine, pharmacy, dentistry, veterinary medicine, business, or law.
Burstyn, Judith (Chair)
Forest, Katrina (Professor of Bacteriology)
Ge, Ying (Associate Professor of Cell and Regenerative Biology)
Gilbert, Pupa (Professor of Physics)
Golden, Jennifer (Assistant Professor of Pharmacy)
Gopalan, Padma (Professor of Materials Science and Engineering)
Hsung, Richard (Professor of Pharmacy)
Jackson, Catherine (Assistant Professor of History of Science)
Kuech, Thomas (Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering)
Li, Lingjun (Professor of Pharmacy)
Lynn, David (Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering)
Mecozzi, Sandro (Associate Professor of Pharmacy)
Middlecamp, Catherine (Professor, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies)
Pedersen, Joel (Professor of Soil Science)
Tang, Weiping (Associate Professor of Pharmacy)
Weibel, Douglas (Professor of Biochemistry)
Yu, Lian (Professor of Pharmacy)
Abruña-Rodríquez, Ángel (Senior Faculty Assistant)
Bain, Rachel (Instructional Technology Specialist)
Block, Stephen (Lecturer and General Chemistry Assistant Laboratory Director)
Bowman, Matthew (Lecturer)
Doolittle, Pamela (Analytical Chemistry Laboratory Director)
Esselman, Brian (Lecturer and Organic Chemistry Assistant Laboratory Director)
Hill, Nicholas (Organic Chemistry Laboratory Director)
Hooker, Paul (Senior Lecturer)
Lamont, Liana (Faculty Assistant)
Maynard, James (Lecture Demonstrator)
McClain, Robert (Analytical Chemistry Laboratory Director)
Stoll, Lindy (Faculty Assistant)
Tatarsky, Amy (Faculty Assistant)
Wendt, Mark (Physical Chemistry Laboratory Director)
Wilkinson, Chad (General Chemistry Laboratory Director)
Zelewski, Linda (Lecturer)
Zhou, Jia (Associate Lecturer)
Chemistry Learning Center
Dang, Allice (Assistant Faculty Associate)
Jetzer, Kelly (Instructional Specialist)
Jacob, Anthony (Director)
Laboy, José (Associate Faculty Associate)
Lee, Agnes (Faculty Associate)
Ramey, Shea (Faculty Associate)
Reitz, Tracey (Assistant Faculty Associate)
Toland, David (Assistant Faculty Associate)
Zayas Gonzáles, Yashira (Assistant Faculty Associate)
Student Services and Advising
Barta, Cheri (Undergraduate Research Director)
Hamers, Jeanne (Undergraduate Chemistry Director and Chemistry Advisor)
A number of resources are available to students seeking assistance with their chemistry courses. Students are strongly encouraged to attend the office hours of the instructors for the course.
The Chemistry Learning Center (CLC) supports students in introductory chemistry courses (103, 104, and 108) and in some sections of organic chemistry. The center welcomes as many students as possible but unfortunately does not have sufficient resources to support all students seeking help. The center is funded to work with specific groups of students, such as first-generation low-income students, underrepresented students, students on academic probation, students with disabilities, students who have trouble understanding English, new transfer students, recently returning veterans, and students at-risk of failing the course. These are general guidelines and the center considers each student seeking assistance on a case-by-case basis, taking into account available program space. Program eligibility is usually determined by an interview with a staff member.
Further assistance may be sought from various tutoring services on campus, including the Greater University Tutoring Services (GUTS), University Housing Tutoring, and the College of Engineering Undergraduate Learning Center (ULC). Alpha Chi Sigma (AXE) is a co-ed professional chemistry fraternity that also offers tutoring. For students seeking more individualized tutoring, the Department of Chemistry maintains a list of private tutors available for hire.
Through the generosity of alumni and other friends of the department, the Department of Chemistry is able to offer scholarships and summer research support. In 2016, the department awarded almost 30 undergraduate scholarships that totaled more than $150,000.
Any student who will be enrolled as an undergraduate at UW-Madison during the next academic year and is a chemistry major or is conducting research with a chemistry faculty member is eligible to apply for the scholarships. An overall GPA of at least 3.0 is required for application; awards are based on both merit and financial need. Students may apply for academic year scholarships and/or summer research support. Learn more about chemistry scholarships and how to apply.