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About the Chemistry Department

Commitment to Teaching

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Creighton University is committed to providing the best possible laboratory-based chemistry education for our majors and for the College as a whole. We are (and have been consistently over the past 15 years) one of the largest producers of American Chemical Society (ACS) certified chemistry graduates in the nation. Over the last 10 years we have graduated an average of 37 chemistry majors per year. A published study on academic excellence (sponsored by Dreyfus Foundation, the Welch Foundation, and the Keck Foundation among others) ranked the department 17th out of 1,115 predominantly Undergraduate Institutions in its production of chemistry baccalaureate degrees. This places us in the top 2% nationwide.

    Stat 500

    Students in General Chemistry per semester

    Stat 300

    Students in Organic Chemistry per semester

    Stat 150

    Students in Nursing Chemistry per semester

    Commitment to Scholarship

    Our emphasis on scholarly endeavors by both our faculty and our students is one aspect of our program that is essential, as chemistry and biochemistry are ever-changing and evolving sciences. We require our certified majors to participate in an independent research project. We believe that traditional scholarly inquiry strengthens a student’s ability to problem-solve, emphasizes the need to be creative in science, and provides unique opportunities to investigate fields of chemistry and biochemistry that are not treated directly in the courses that we offer. Additionally, a good research program will involve the students in investigations of the scientific literature, give them opportunities for scientific writing and oral presentations, and directly challenge them to think about the ethical aspects of science and of professional behavior.

    Dr. Lynne Dieckman in lab with student

    When students participate in research, they are participating in the discovery of new knowledge. This can increase their confidence in their own abilities and often provides the absolute proof that science is an evolving enterprise and that they can contribute to that process. The importance of one-on-one interactions between students and their faculty mentors cannot be underestimated. Professional relationships that can last for a lifetime are often formed in these environments. This leads to Creighton University alumni that have very positive, endearing memories of their undergraduate years and a continuing connection to the University in the form of their mentors. Obviously, undergraduate participation in faculty scholarship yields great rewards for all involved, the students, the faculty, and the University.

    One traditional measure of scholarly productivity involves analyzing the number of publications and presentations that result from the scholarly endeavors and quantifying the external support (funding and equipment for such activities). By those measures our faculty have fared very well.

    • 150 Publications in national and/or international journals
    • 25 with Creighton University undergraduate student co-authors
    • 250 presentations at regional, national, or international meetings, 84 of which had undergraduate co-authors and most read by the undergraduate students themselves
    • Averaging $1,000,000 as principle investigators for external funding in support of research and average another $1,000,000 as co-principle investigators.
      • NSF
      • NIH
      • Department of Agriculture
      • Research Corporation
      • ACS-PRF
      • NASA
    • Clare Boothe Luce funds
    • Health Science Strategic Investment Fund

    Undergraduates matriculating from our department continue with their formal education. The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Creighton prepares its students for many possible futures. The formal training in laboratory-based courses is an integral portion of this preparation. We believe that our laboratory courses instill in the students an ability to problem solve in unique and creative ways, utilizing both team-based and independent learning environments.

    • 33% Proceed to medical or dental school
    • 34% Enroll in Ph.D. programs in chemistry or chemistry-related (e.g., biochemistry, chemical engineering, environmental science) disciplines
    • 33% Participate in organized volunteer programs (Jesuit Volunteer Corps or Peace Corps), or obtain employment in chemistry-related fields, or enroll in MBA or JD programs

    The Chemistry and Biochemistry Department at Creighton provides formal training for our state-of-the-art instrumentation. Undergraduates in the department gain experience with these instruments through both laboratory-based courses and research experiences. Students that matriculate from our department receive a robust, hands-on education in instrumentation that empowers them to gather primary data, evaluate the meaning of this data, and creatively apply appropriate instrumentation to solve problems in the chemical sciences.

    Representative Instrumentation:

    Mass Spectrometers

    ESI/APCI MS, Advion ExpressionS CMS
    GC/MSD, Agilent 6850/5973
    GC/MSD, Agilent 6859/5975 with autosampler
    MALDI TOF MS, Bruker microflex LRF
    LC/MS/MS, Bruker micrOTOF Q III

    NMR Spectrometers

    Bruker Avance III HD 400
    Oxford X-Pulse 60

    IR Spectrometers

    Thermo iS5, equipped with ATR (2)
    Nicolet Avatar 370, equipped with VT ATR
    Thermo iS10, equipped with diamond ATR

    AA Spectrometers

    Agilent 240
    GBC Avanta

    Gas Chromatographs

    HP 5890 (4)
    HP 6850
    Agilent 8860 (2)
    Agilent 7890B
    GowMac (2)


    Agilent 1260 quaternary gradient with diode array detector
    Dionix quaternary gradient, UV/Vis and electrochemical detectors
    HP 1100 (2)


    Beckman-Coulter ProteomeLab PA800

    UV/Vis Spectrometers

    Agilent Cary 300
    HP 8453
    Thermo Scientific NanoDrop Onec


    Carey Eclipse

    Fluorescence microscope


    Plate Readers

    Biotek Synergy H1 (5)
    SLT SpectraFluor

    Single-crystal X-ray diffractometer

    Rigaku SCX mini

    Scaning electron microscope

    nanoScience Phenom Pharos


    Denton Vacuum Desk V


    Sorvall Legend RT+
    Beckman Coulter Avanti J-25I

    DNA Sequencer

    ABI Prism 377

    PCR system

    Perkin-Elmer 2400 GeneAmp

    Incubator shakers

    New Brunswick Scientific I2500
    New Brunswick Sceintific innova 40


    Heidolph 2540M


    Allied-Fisher (4)

    Polarographic analyzer


    Electrochemical analysis system


    Magnetic Susceptibility Balance

    Johnson Matthey


    PE Pyris 1
    PE DSC 7


    UIC, membrane and vapor pressure

    Contact Us

    Department Office
    Hixson-Lied Science Building, Room 268
    Phone: 402.280.2813
    Fax: 402.280.5737

    Mailing Address
    Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
    2500 California Plaza
    Omaha NE 68178