The Applied Sciences Ph.D. in Applied Chemistry provides advanced preparation for careers in government, industrial, and academic research. The degree offers a flexible program of study in order to take advantage of the previous training of each student. The number of required courses has been minimized, placing the responsibility for developing a student’s program of study upon the student and their advisory committee. Research is the major emphasis of this program. Our faculty members pursue vigorous and productive research programs on a variety of topics, providing graduate students with numerous opportunities to select an area of specialization. Teaching is also a required activity in the program, and graduate students contribute to the teaching mission of the Chemistry Department as TAs (teaching assistants), most often in freshman level laboratories.
Participating faculty are from the Department of Chemistry (College of Science and Mathematics) and the Department of Applied Science (Donaghey College of Engineering and Information Technology (EIT)). In addition to their other faculty responsibilities, these faculty direct Applied Chemistry students in doctoral research, serve as members of the student’s supervisory committees, and generally oversee operation of the program. They also serve as supervisors for the work assignments of Ph.D. students supported by a state-funded graduate assistantship. Several faculty are engaged in collaborative research programs, bringing together talents and knowledge from different areas to focus on interdisciplinary problems. Research collaborations exist among this group of faculty, as well as externally with the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) and the National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR). Research collaborations outside the central Arkansas area have included NASA-Kennedy Space Center and Oak Ridge National Laboratories.
Students in our program are a diverse group, whose academic background represents not only Arkansas and the surrounding region, but also many other states and foreign countries. Students work closely with one another and with faculty mentors, creating a spirit of community and cooperation. This is facilitated through seminars and various social functions. Students are expected to conduct themselves in a professional and ethical manner. A specific goal and benefit of the program is development of the student’s skills in all areas of scientific communication. As part of that development, serving as a teaching assistant is a required program activity. That experience is also of great benefit in other areas of professional development.