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What can a Chemistry major do for you?

The Department of Chemistry at UK prides itself on providing a complete, rigorous, and up-to-date education preparing you for a wide variety of careers. Chemistry majors benefit from close contact with dynamic, inspiring professors in both the classroom and the laboratory. Whether designing instruments to analyze residues at a crime scene, creating the next generation of drugs to battle cancer or diabetes, or developing new materials for solar energy and battery technology, chemistry plays a central role, as it does in all modern technologies. Our graduates can find high-paying, intellectually satisfying careers immediately upon graduation. The department offers a Bachelor of Science degree for students wishing to pursue a career in chemistry, including a specialized degree in biological chemistry. There is also a Bachelor of Arts option for students who would benefit from a chemistry background, but wish to pursue career paths in areas such as ecology, pharmacy, criminal justice or law.


50% of courses have a lab component

4 different major options

400 students in the chemistry undergrad program

What skills does studying chemistry develop?

  • analyze and solve modern problems in many areas
  • unleash creativity and imagination regarding all we can touch
  • generate and formulate ideas
  • utilize math to describe the world around us
  • collaborate with other scientists
  • develop technical writing and public speaking abilities
  • become proficient in the laboratory
  • develop organization skills

Career Oppo​rtunities

Chemistry provides an excellent foundation for careers in a variety of professions and occupations in academia, government, and industry, and in diverse fields such as environmental sciences, pharmaceuticals, medicine, materials, energy, oceanography, education, health, aerospace, law, and education. Careers include but are not limited to the following:

  • research chemist
  • analytical chemist
  • agricultural chemist
  • food chemist
  • technical officer
  • product development chemist
  • process development chemist
  • quality control chemist
  • patent agent
  • laboratory technician
  • teacher
  • technical writer
  • forensic technician
  • pharmaceutical development
  • product testing and analysis
  • ethnobotanist
  • forensic chemist
  • quality control chemist - chemical sales
  • scientific equipment sales

A&S Hall of Fame Inductee

Linda Challis Gill
2015 Inductee



Dr. Paul G. Sears
2013 Inductee



John D. Baxter
2010 Inductee



Want to learn more?


Department of Chemistry
(859) 257-4741
125 Chemistry/Physics Building
Lexington KY 40506-0055