Skip to main content

Department of Chemistry & Physics

Unrivaled access to outstanding lab facilities and a warm, close-knit community of students and faculty are hallmarks of chemistry at DeSales.

The majors in Chemistry and Biochemistry-Molecular Biology offer a uniquely DeSales experience. Our small class sizes, modern laboratories, and supportive community create an atmosphere for learning enriched by our Salesian values. Your teachers, advisors and research mentors know you and are dedicated to your success.

Our faculty represent a broad range of individual specialties and are well-respected for their research and professional activities. You will have the opportunity to take part in research, publish and present your work, and participate in a dynamic community of scientific inquiry.

You’ll have hands-on access to facilities unrivaled at many other liberal arts universities. Throughout their education, students gain extensive experience with instrumentation. Thanks to our generous endowments, grants, and benefactors, our instrument suite includes a recently purchased Fluorimeter, HPLC, and Bomb Calorimeter, and UV-VIS and IR spectrometers in addition to an AA, NMR, ICP-AES, GC, and GC-MS. Our freshman chemistry lab and physics labs are equipped with Pasco sensors and software that enable digital data collection and analysis.

DNA Barcoding Project Identifies Endangered Species on Campus

by Janelle Hill Jan 15, 2020
2020DNABarcoding

The results are in for a DNA barcoding project conducted on campus last semester. 

Students in Dr. Lara Goudsouzian’s molecular biology class identified about a dozen endangered species and also found one critically endangered species. Two students, Kelsey Smith and Nathan Hwang, also have been invited to present their work at the Natural Science Research symposium at the end of the spring semester. 

“Not only did the students learn the techniques of barcoding, but they also helped their own community with their findings. This type of service learning is in keeping with our University’s Salesian tradition.”

 Dr. Lara Goudsouzian, assistant professor

The students used butterfly nets and shovels to collect their samples from the marsh behind the Dorothy Day Student Union. After breaking open the cells and purifying the DNA back in the lab, the students sent it off to a company that provides the exact genetic sequence, which they used to compare to databases. 

The students also shared their data with entomologists and molecular pathologists at the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture to discover whether the species were native, invasive, or extending into our area because of climate change.

For more photos of the DNA barcoding project, visit our Flickr album.

Topics:

DNA Barcoding Project Identifies Endangered Species on Campus

by Janelle Hill Jan 15, 2020
2020DNABarcoding

The results are in for a DNA barcoding project conducted on campus last semester. 

Students in Dr. Lara Goudsouzian’s molecular biology class identified about a dozen endangered species and also found one critically endangered species. Two students, Kelsey Smith and Nathan Hwang, also have been invited to present their work at the Natural Science Research symposium at the end of the spring semester. 

“Not only did the students learn the techniques of barcoding, but they also helped their own community with their findings. This type of service learning is in keeping with our University’s Salesian tradition.”

 Dr. Lara Goudsouzian, assistant professor

The students used butterfly nets and shovels to collect their samples from the marsh behind the Dorothy Day Student Union. After breaking open the cells and purifying the DNA back in the lab, the students sent it off to a company that provides the exact genetic sequence, which they used to compare to databases. 

The students also shared their data with entomologists and molecular pathologists at the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture to discover whether the species were native, invasive, or extending into our area because of climate change.

For more photos of the DNA barcoding project, visit our Flickr album.

Topics:

Natural Science Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in our department, including faculty, student, and research news.
Don't miss an issue - subscribe now.

Subscribe to our Newsletter