Apply your content knowledge. Undergraduate research is one of the best tools for enhancing your academic experience in the Department of Chemistry. By participating in undergraduate research, you can gain valuable knowledge outside of the classroom experience. This knowledge base includes the development of problem solving skills, critical thinking skills, and analytical skills.
Enhance your résumé. The experiences gained from doing research can make the difference when you are searching for a position in the chemical industry. Students who have participated in research have been able to secure positions with Abbott Laboratories, Baxter Healthcare, Pfizer Global Research, Merck Research Laboratories, the Illinois State Police, and many other agencies that require the services of chemists.
Choose a specialty. Independent research projects are designed to help students obtain research skills in an area of interest and to better understand methods and techniques involved in scholarly research. Many students find that it aids them in selecting their specific chemical specialty. Picking a specialty can be a powerful tool for increasing your competitiveness as a chemist.
About 80% of the department's majors participate in undergraduate research, and many of these students present the results of their research at departmental, university, regional, and national scientific meetings. Undergraduates are also actively involved in co-authoring articles in scientific journals.