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Chemistry students have opportunities to engage in research activities throughout their academic career at Purchase through independent studies and the senior project. Research, in most cases, is carried out under the guidance of a faculty member, although off-campus projects are also possible. The capstone of a student's career at Purchase is the senior project, an 8-credit, two-semester research endeavor. Students begin their preparation for their senior thesis work during their junior year. The Junior Seminar helps prepare students for creative inquiry and the preparation and writing of the senior project proposal. During their senior year, students work in the laboratory of one of the faculty and carry out independent, original research. Upon completion of the work, the student submits the results in the form of a thesis as well as reports the findings in the ACS Undergraduate Research Symposium. In many cases, the results go on to be published in refereed scientific journals with the student and the faculty mentor as co-authors.
NIH Bridges Program
Most of the chemistry faculty are involved with the NIH-Bridges research program. The NIH-funded Bridges program enables minorities and economically disadvantaged students from community colleges to advance to four-year colleges and hence pursue a career in the biomedical sciences. The program requires the students to undertake a fully-funded summer research investigation at Purchase College prior to their admission the subsequent Fall. Some of the Bridges students use their summer program in chemistry as a stepping stone for their advanced career in the biomedical field. For more information, refer to Bridges to the Baccalaureate Program.