College of Science & Engineering


The Chemistry Department at Western offers courses for students who plan to major in Chemistry, Biochemistry and other physical, engineering and life sciences programs. The department offers M.S., B.S., and B.A. degrees in chemistry and biochemistry, approved by the American Chemical Society. Programs of study are designed to emphasize the fundamental principles of chemistry and their application to technological, societal, and industrial problems, to develop scientific reasoning, advanced hands-on laboratory skills, and to prepare students for success in graduate/professional programs, government, and industry.

Prof. Patrick Research with StudentsThe Department is recognized as having one of the strongest undergraduate-based research programs in the nation, supported by an average of $1 million in annual external grant funding.  Award-winning faculty work closely with students on a variety of important scientific challenges, ranging from medicinal chemistry to solar energy, protein engineering, the development of new aerospace and electronic materials, and many more.  Students are immersed in an environment emphasizing strong interdisciplinary scientific preparation and receive hands-on experience with advanced chemical and biochemical methods in state-of-the-art facilities.  The program draws top students from across the Washington and the country. 

Chemistry Department Building

Western consistently ranks among the top universities in the West. Located in Bellingham, WA, the campus overlooks Puget Sound and the beautiful San Juan Islands, and is adjacent to the majestic Mt. Baker and the North Cascades.


For more about the Department, see: History and Mission Statement


 WWU Sustainability

 The Chemistry Department Administrative Office Suite has achieved Platinum Status Sustainability Certification.

 For more information visit the WWU Sustainability website.



Department Distinctions:

  • Dr. Rob Berger has been named a 2017 Cottrell Scholar by the Research Corporation for Science Advancement
  • Associate Professor of Chemistry John Gilbertson reaches for a vial in a lab. Gilbertson has been named a 2017 Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar.
  • A group photo of CSE faculty
  • Dr. Anthony-Cahill and some of our MS graduates!
  • Dr. John Antos named a 2016 Cottrell Scholar by the Research Corporation for Science Advancement (RCSA).
  • Tess Clinkingbeard received an Outstanding Poster Award from the Colloid & Surface Chemistry Division at the 251st American Chemical Society National Meeting.
  • Keenan Komoto and Viktor Laszlo celebrate computational division poster awards with Dr. Tim Kowalczyk at the 250th ACS national meeting.
  • A split photo showing group of students pose smiling on the left and a Blood magazine feature on a recent study from the Spiegel group describing the immune response to hemophilia treatment.
  • Chemistry MS student Christian Erickson and fellow team members win $10,000 at a business plan competition for their transparent solar window.


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