WIU Chemistry students during poster day

WIU Chemistry Students - Fall 2023 Poster Day

Research Opportunities

Undergraduate Research

For an undergraduate student, involvement in research provides excellent preparation for graduate school, medical and other health-related schools, as well as careers in industry. If you are looking for careers in these fields, we are here to meet your needs.

Why Do Research?

Learn by Discovery

Undergraduate research is an essential component of quality chemistry education, and research is becoming a focal point in each science discipline at Western. Through independent research, chemistry students learn by discovery, instead of simply reading or being told about science. Independent research not only reinforces the basic concepts of chemistry, but also teaches our students how chemistry is put into practice. Research prepares Western students to be the scientists of the future and opens doorways for future discoveries.

Travel Opportunities

Our students travel to state, regional, national, and international conferences. These trips are funded by faculty research grants. The students present their research data, mix with and meet chemists from across the US around the world. Our students have made 47 research presentations in the past few years at the national American Chemical Society or the national American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology meetings in Boston, Atlanta, Chicago, New Orleans, San Diego Washington DC, and San Francisco.

Students Become Published Authors

Our students have been listed as co-authors with the chemistry faculty in over 100 refereed journal articles during the past four years alone. Most of these have been in nationally or internationally known journals, such as the Journal of Organic Chemistry, the Journal of Inorganic Chemistry, the Journal of the American Chemical Society, Organic Letters, Applications in Biotechnology and Microbiology, Experimental Biology, the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, and many, many more.

Course Credit for Research

Credits may be received through research courses, which often serve as electives for chemistry majors. You can see and be a part of the cutting-edge applications of your course work in developing new materials, solving environmental problems and gaining detailed understanding of important biological systems. You can experience the excitement of discovery while working in partnership with faculty and graduate students who mentor you. You can acquire hands-on experience and general scientific skills that will be valuable whether you choose to pursue graduate study, health professions or careers in industry.

A wide variety of research projects suitable for pursuit by undergraduates are available in the Chemistry Department. A great majority of chemistry majors spend multiple semesters in a research group and often are featured as co-authors in abstracts resulting from their work. Remember, you need not be a chemistry major to participate in undergraduate research in the Chemistry Department.

Research Inspiring Student Excellence (RISE)

The RISE program provides students with unique research and academic experiences to help them become tomorrows leaders. Learn more about RISE.