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Academic Programs


Beakers in a lab

The Biochemistry major introduces students to the application of chemical principles to biological systems across living organisms. Students learn and integrate biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics to understand and solve problems within the spheres of health, medicine, environment, forensics, and food at the molecular level. Salem offers a bachelor of science in biochemistry.

Jobs and Outcomes

A degree in biochemistry prepares students for postgraduate studies in fields including molecular biology, pharmacology, and biophysics as well as a range of career paths in areas such as dentistry, medical school, physician associate school, pharmacology, process engineering, veterinary science, and agricultural science. Biochemists are employed in government, industry, education, medicine and by private institutions.

Program Leadership

To meet other faculty, please go to the faculty/staff directory.

Student Experience

Students in biochemistry enjoy developing practical lab skills, working as a team, and conducting research alongside passionate professors who help students succeed. The small size of Salem’s courses mean students get real, hands-on experience doing biochemistry. In addition, students benefit from opportunities for internships in medical schools such as Wake Forest School of Medicine, Eastern Carolina University Brody School of Medicine, and graduate schools. Their result is a high acceptance rate to medical, dental, physician assistant, pharmacy and graduate schools. Students also chose to work in teaching, industry, research, or clinical labs after college.

Health Leadership Highlights

  • Students in the biochemistry program have the opportunity to participate in writing projects leading to peer-reviewed scientific publications, shadow medical staff at Wake Forest University, attend annual scientific meetings, and complete summer internships.
  • For example, a recent Salem biochemistry student completed an extensive work-study program in a chemistry lab, leading to a post-bac program at Johns Hopkins University. Additionally, student work has led to peer-reviewed journal articles, medical staff shadowing experiences, attending scientific meetings, and acceptance into medical, pharmacy, nurse anesthesia and other health professional schools.

Success Stories

Tyler Davenport, C’22

Class of 2022 Major: Biochemistry  The biochemistry program at Salem College was a window for me to see the different possibilities within this field. This program has allowed me to pursue my master’s in food science so that I can become a flavor chemist. My professor, Dr. Totten helped cultivate my interest and guide me...

Haley McDonough, C’22

Class of 2022 Major: Biochemistry and Religion Salem’s focus on Women’s Education and Health Leadership equipped me with the necessary skills and confidence to be a leader, gave me unique learning opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom, and prepared me for the rigorous nature of professional school. Salem’s small student to professor ratio...

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