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Biochemistry

Overview of the Program

Hood offers two undergraduate majors in chemistry—chemistry and biochemistry. The chemistry major consists of a core of chemistry courses plus additional work in physics and mathematics. The biochemistry major consists of chemistry and biology courses plus essential physics and mathematics. Chemistry majors can earn secondary teaching certification. In addition, minors are available in chemistry and physics and an environmental chemistry concentration is offered within the environmental science and policy major.

Hood's faculty—including biochemists; physicists; and analytical, organic and physical chemists—are experts in their fields who are dedicated to helping students fulfill academic and professional ambitions. Hood's chemistry and physics classes involve much more than lectures; they stress active participation, team learning and computer-aided experiments in an innovative curriculum. At Hood, all labs are taught by faculty, not student assistants. Students gain hands-on experience using the same sophisticated equipment encountered in the workplace or graduate school.

Facilities and Instrumentation

Hood's laboratory science programs are housed in the Hodson Science and Technology Center.

Chemistry and physics teaching labs are equipped with computer-con- trolled data acquisition and analysis systems. Chemistry and biochemistry students routinely use instruments such as:

  • Gas chromatographs (GC)
  • Raman spectrometer
  • High performance liquid chromatograph (HPLC)
  • Ion chromatograph
  • Capillary electrophoresis
  • HPLC-Mass spectrometer (LC/MS)
  • GC-Mass spectrometer (GC/MS)
  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectrometer (NMR)
  • Mid- and Far- IR Fourier transform infrared spectrophotometers (FT-IR)
  • Visible and ultraviolet spectrophotometers (UV-VIS)
  • Calorimeters
  • PCR thermocycler
  • Fluorimeter
  • Horizontal and vertical gel electrophoresis systems

State-of-the-art computer equipment allows students to:

  • Measure velocity using photogates
  • Perform sophisticated mathematical calculations
  • "See" molecules in three dimensions
  • Utilize data acquisition and modeling systems
  • Search international scientific databases

Student Organizations

  • Gamma Sigma Epsilon—National Chemistry Honor Society
  • Free Radicals—the student chapter of the American Chemical Society

Student organizations arrange speakers, presentations, field trips, social events and service activities.

Internships

Some of the nation's top research and biotechnology firms and government agencies are located within a short drive of Hood, giving students access to tremendous resources for research, field trips, lectures, conferences and internships.

These are some of the laboratories that have welcomed Hood College interns:

  • Cell Trends
  • National Cancer Institute at Frederick
  • National Institute of Standards and Technology
  • National Institutes of Health
  • National Park Service
  • Pfizer Pharmaceuticals
  • Schering-Plough Pharmaceuticals
  • Southern Research Institute
  • U.S. Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Student Success Stories

Students regularly present the results of their independent projects and have won awards at local, regional and national meetings. Meetings at which students regularly present include:

  • American Chemical Society (national and regional meetings)
  • Eastern Analytical Symposium
  • Intercollegiate Student Chemists Convention
  • National Council for Undergraduate Research Conference
  • University of Maryland Baltimore County Research Symposium

Alumni Success Stories

Hood chemistry graduates include research scientists, pediatricians, cancer researchers, forensic scientists and physical therapists. Nearly 100 percent of our graduates are working in their chosen career field or pursuing advanced degrees.

Recent alumni are pursuing doctorates at institutions such as the University of North Carolina, The Johns Hopkins University, Shenandoah School of Pharmacy, Northwestern University, the University of California Berkeley, University of Nebraska, University of Michigan and the University of Maryland. Hood alumni are working at organizations and firms nationwide, including:

  • Baltimore-area hospitals
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb
  • MedImmune
  • National Institute of Standards and Technology
  • National Institutes of Health
  • Peptide Technologies
  • Science Application International Corporation
  • The Institute for Genomic Research
  • The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutes
  • U.S. Department of Agriculturee

Learn more about the major and the department.