Biochemistry Major

Stonehill adeptly combines technical training with the liberal arts so that its graduating Biochemistry majors are not only superb scientists but also well-rounded lifelong learners.

Biochemistry is a discipline, yet at the same time it is an interdisciplinary science drawing many themes from the disciplines of Biology and Chemistry. It is distinctive, however, in its emphasis on the following three areas of study:

  • The chemical composition and three-dimensional structures of biomolecules and macromolecular assemblies
  • The molecular mechanisms of enzymatic catalysis and regulation of biochemical reactions
  • The metabolic reactions which synthesize and degrade biomolecules with an emphasis on bioenergetics

Stonehill’s liberal arts foundation allows countless opportunities to supplement your science studies, both in classrooms and campus life, with learning and experiences that help give you the competitive advantage of being a flexible and well-rounded thinker. Our science professors will be the first to tell you: We are focused on the whole person, not just on creating great scientists. We want our students to find purpose and meaning in their lives.

Professors Who Demand Your Best & Help You Achieve It

Our greatest strength is our professors, who are truly committed to undergraduate education. Unlike science programs at many other colleges and universities, professors teach all of the labs at Stonehill. They create a supportive and challenging learning environment that will help you to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to succeed during and after college.

Graduates frequently mention the close faculty-student interaction as one of the most important aspects of their Stonehill experience. This interaction extends far beyond the classroom. You will have a Biology or Chemistry faculty advisor who, over the course of four years, will help you deal with all of the questions and decisions that lead to life after Stonehill. You can depend on your advisor to help you make well-reasoned decisions about course choices and scheduling, regional and international internships, study abroad, graduate studies and career options.

A Focus on Practical Experience

Through a rigorous course of study with a strong emphasis on the learn-by-doing approach, the Biochemistry Program is committed to providing the practical knowledge and skills necessary for graduate study in biochemistry, chemistry, molecular biology, genetics and biotechnology or admission to professional school.

The program will also enable students to obtain skilled technical positions after graduation in research laboratories in universities, biotechnology or pharmaceutical development industries, hospitals and government agencies.

Juniors and seniors are encouraged to apply for off-campus internships in biochemistry. In addition, junior and senior Biochemistry majors present two program seminars covering information from the current chemical literature as well as writing and defending a senior thesis, usually relating to research they have completed.

The Biochemistry major conforms to the recommendations of the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

The Resources You Need to Succeed

At Stonehill, science students get to use equipment that, at other schools, is often only available to faculty and grad students. Our High Field Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectrometer is a $230,000 instrument that chemistry students are using the first semester of their first year. By junior year they are using our Ultra Performance Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometer and Gas chromatography Mass Spectrometer.

But the equipment is only one of elements that help create an environment where students can succeed. Others include:

  • A state-of-the-art, $34 million, 89,000-square foot Science Center
  • Small class sizes
  • Close interaction with faculty and research mentors
  • Supportive interactions among students
  • Multiple opportunities to gain real-life experience.

A Valuable Resource in the Seat Right Beside You

Students also lean on each other for help. A great example is our Peer-Led Team Learning program. PLTL meetings are a hallmark of the collaborative learning environment in the sciences at Stonehill. PLTLs are small groups of students who gather weekly to work on problems. You’ll quickly value these meetings because they connect you with your fellow students so that you can take advantage of their expertise while sharing yours and working together through complex course material.

The Shields Science Center is also home to Atrium Tutors, who are in the Pettit Atrium from 8:30 to 11:30 almost every night to help students with their science problems. All Stonehill science students have an assigned tutor for their first two years in the program.

A Minor that Bolsters Many Other Degrees

The Biochemistry minor provides a strong foundation in molecular and cellular biology and chemistry for those students wanting flexibility to pursue additional preparation in other disciplines such as business, English, mathematics, philosophy or psychology.