Serious. Fun.

The Warren Wilson chemistry program is serious and intense. But with the help of your faculty, the Chemistry Crew, the Elvis lounge, and the company of the cool chemistry cat Mendeleev, you will thoroughly enjoy your exploration of the basis of our world.

Options Abound: Pursue a B.A. or a B.S.

We know that different students seek different opportunities from their Chemistry degree which is why we are pleased to offer both a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. Your faculty will work with you to determine which is right for you.

  • Our Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree prepares students for graduate school, for medical, dental, pharmacy, or veterinary school, as well as preparing you for good jobs as a traditional “bench chemist.”
  • Our Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree is a suitable track for those students who have an interest in careers that emphasize teaching or technical work. It is also an excellent track for students who wish to double-major, or who desire flexibility for taking a wider variety of liberal arts courses.

Chemistry Instrumentation

We know that tools matter. As you work with faculty and develop your own independent research projects, you will have access to a variety of instrumentation. Just a few of our instruments are:

  • Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer (ICP): A Perkin Elmer Optima 3100 XL ICP is used for multi-element environmental research by our students.
  • Gas Chromatograph/Mass Spectrometer (GC/MS): The Shimadzu Gas Chromatograph/Mass Spectrometer (GC/MS) is used to separate mixtures and to characterize each component in the mixture.
  • High Performance Liquid Chromatographs (HPLC): The Department has two high performance chromatographs used by many students in their Natural Science Undergraduate Research Sequence (NSURS).
  • Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AA): The Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AA) is used to measure the concentration of metals such as lead, mercury, zinc and iron.

I love how intellectually demanding my work on Chemistry Crew is, how challenging it is to work behind the scenes making solutions and setting up experiments, and how rewarding it is to constantly deepen my understanding as I tutor students in introductory concepts.

Rebecca Hirsch '18

Explore Classes in This Program

ENS 431


Toxicology is the study of the adverse effects of xenobiotic agents. In this senior level course, you’ll be introduced to the basic principles of biochemical toxicology. In particular, we’ll study the impact of environmental pollution on humans and wildlife.

CHM 332

Quantum Chemistry and Molecular Spectroscopy

Interested in quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics and spectroscopy? In this you’ll learn to interpret and explain the fundamental principles governing the observed spectroscopic behavior of a quantum mechanical system as predicted by statistical mechanics. Translation, vibration, rotation, and nuclear states will be thoroughly explored and then applied.

SCI 390

Research Design

In this course, you’ll begin your independent research project through our Natural Science Undergraduate Research Sequence (NSURS). You’ll hone your skills in literature searching, experimental design, sampling, statistics, writing, and speaking. As you move through the course, you’ll consult closely with faculty members, choose a research advisor, choose a research project, and write a grant proposal.

Meet Our Faculty

I love to teach because I love to learn. It is so rewarding to teach and learn with Warren Wilson students, through interactions in the chemistry classroom, in the chemistry lab, through their myriad work crews, in the community, and as collaborative researchers.

Langdon J. Martin, Ph.D.
Langdon Martin
Langdon J. Martin, Ph.D.
David Coffey teaching

I appreciate how the small class sizes at Wilson allow me to break a class from a physics problem and have a full class discussion on the beauty or application in our world.

David Coffey, Ph.D.
David Coffey teaching
David Coffey, Ph.D.

Warren Wilson students are the most engaged and curious students I have ever had the privilege of teaching. I feel so fortunate to work with students who challenge me to learn and grow every day.

Kim Borges, Ph.D.
Kim Borges, Ph.D.

Warren Wilson students are curious and engaging. I am inspired by their questions and enthusiasm during class discussions. I love to teach them and learn with them.

Yuemei Zhang, Ph.D.
Yuemei Zhang, Ph.D.
Langdon Martin
Meet Our Students

Science and Art Collide

For Andrew Carnie, science and art are interwoven. His interest in the intersection of these two disciplines was evident as a student when he studied both chemistry and painting at Warren Wilson. He went on to expand his academic study of both science and art before becoming an artist, instructor, and speaker. His artistic practice involves interaction with scientists in different fields, and his work has been exhibited at both the Science Museum, London, and the Natural History Museum, Rotterdam.