About Penn Chemistry

Penn Chemistry is a department of ideas and scholars, where the community of faculty, post-doctoral fellows, students, and research staff collaborate in exploring new frontiers in the chemical and molecular sciences.

Penn Chemistry is a leading center of molecular research. Within the department, the traditional sub-fields of biochemistry, organic, inorganic, and physical chemistry serve as a framework from which collaborative, inter-disciplinary experimental and theoretical research is launched.

Chemistry Research
Research thrusts include:
  • Synthesis and Characterization of New Compounds and Materials

  • Chemistry of Life Processes

  • Nanoscale Materials and Molecular Devices

  • Chemistry of the Environment

  • Energy and the Hydrogen Economy

Penn Chemistry is housed in a complex of buildings providing classrooms, teaching and research laboratories, analytical instrumentation, library services, and support operations. The Chemistry Complex is located within the heart of the Penn campus, and Penn Chemistry is central to many multidisciplinary research efforts on campus, both geographically and scientifically. The School of Medicine and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences are adjacent to the complex, which facilitates interactions and makes Chemistry an exciting and forward-looking hub for research programs spanning traditional boundaries.

Penn Chemistry prides itself on its educational mission. A breadth of undergraduate and graduate courses involving the chemical sciences are available in the department, which also administers the University's chemistry and biochemistry majors as well as the Vagelos Scholars Program in the Molecular Life Sciences. Undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers develop skills in laboratory practice, the analysis of findings, and in building models and understanding, while performing research in the leading frontiers of molecular science.

With its compact, urban campus in Philadelphia, Penn Chemistry is located in the heart of much of the nation's chemical and pharmaceutical industry. In addition to all that Philadelphia has to offer, Penn provides easy access to much of the east coast of the U.S., including Boston, New York, and Washington, D.C.