Department of Chemistry

Intricate combinations of 118 elements are the building blocks for everything in existence. At the center of all you see, hear, smell, taste, or touch are molecular combinations and interactions. The exploration of matter, atoms, substances, compounds, and bonds helps us better describe and explain the world we are a part of — from generating renewable energy sources and developing important pharmaceuticals to finding solutions that counter negative environmental impacts.

The Department of Chemistry has a strong, 40-year reputation of quality teaching and research. As you study and manipulate matter at the molecular level, you will learn how to use theory and experimentation to understand the physical and biological world. Small class sizes, an engaged alumni network, and deliberate faculty mentoring will provide you with the knowledge and confidence to discover and apply your passions. 

Jasmine Myles in Lab Coat
Headshot of Ryan Weiss
PLNU Student Amber Heidbrink
pre-health 90% admission rate

As a department, we aim to provide a space to support you and your passions — academically and personally. This means challenging and preparing you intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. Our commitment to your whole person development and success takes shape in many ways. Faculty who are experts in their field will guide you on your way — providing the academic foundation and tools you need to make the next step, while also taking the time to get to know you as a person. In addition to our faculty and staff, our network of science alumni and professionals provide a valuable resource for mentorship and guidance.

PLNU's Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP) provides for and supports procedures, equipment, personal protective equipment, and work practices to protect personnel (and students) from the potential health and physical hazards of laboratory work with hazardous chemicals, and complies with California Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Cal/OSHA). You can read our entire Chemical Hygiene Plan here.

Take a glimpse at what your study of matter will look like in PLNU's Department of Chemistry. Conduct and contribute to research alongside renowned faculty in the classroom and the lab, and work toward real-world solutions to the climate crisis and deadly disease.


Our faculty serve as both teachers and mentors, committed to guiding you toward a full and purposeful education. By helping you explore thought-provoking and influential ideas and engage complex and difficult questions, you'll have access to an environment devoted to the pursuit of truth. An education at PLNU is both transformative and meaningful.

Contact Us

If you would like to learn more about the Department of Chemistry or any of our majors and minors, please reach out to us!

Kerry Alcorn
Department Assistant
(619) 849-2469

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