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School of Mathematics and Natural Sciences

Why come to USM?

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photograph of Debbie, Sharon, and Tina 


  • The Department has been accredited by the American Chemical Society since 1949 and boasts three ACS-certified emphases at the Bachelors level: chemistry, biochemistry, and chemical education. We are the only chemistry department in the southeastern United States to do so. 
  • The teacher licensure option in the regular chemistry emphasis attracts high ability students with the potential to be master chemistry teachers in the high schools of the state of Mississippi. The chemistry licensure program is both NCATE-accredited and ACS-certified (chemical education). USM is the only university in the state with a licensure option within a chemistry department.
  • Numerous chemistry majors have received USM Presidential scholarships, one has been a Rhodes Scholar finalist, three have been Phi Kappa Phi Silver Bowl and National Fellowship recipients, five have been Wal-Mart Competitive Edge Scholars, seven have received Barry Goldwater scholarships, and one of our majors was awarded a UNCF/Merck scholarship (of which only 15 are awarded annually nationwide).
  • Our students have gone on to do postgraduate work at prestigious schools such as Caltech, Baylor, Duke, Emory, Vanderbilt, Harvard, MIT, the University of Virginia, the University of Southern California, the University of Texas at Austin and UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.
  • Several undergraduate student teams have participated in microgravity experiments aboard NASA aircraft. This student-initiated venture has received national attention and was highlighted in a recent edition of Chemical and Engineering News