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B.S. in Biochemistry

Biochemistry (broadly defined as the chemistry of life) is foundational to understand and investigate the life sciences. The B.S. in Biochemistry at SUNY Potsdam integrates knowledge from areas of both chemistry and biology and is demanding in terms of core course requirements, since additional courses are also required in mathematics and physics. Opportunities for undergraduate research projects with faculty members are highly encouraged and common. The B.S. in Biochemistry provides a strong basis for admission into a number of professional programs in the health sciences (such as medicine, dentistry, pharmacy etc.), or the continuation of studies at the graduate level in several areas of the life sciences. It also provides opportunities for employment in government, commercial or academic laboratories.


Students will be able to:

  • describe the major concepts and theoretical principles in biochemistry and molecular biology.
  • solve basic problems in biochemistry efficiently and accurately.
  • perform basic experiments, utilizing instrumentation and fundamental biochemical techniques.
  • to design and complete research projects, inclusive of recording, analyzing, and interpreting data.
  • produce a research poster, oral presentation, or research paper based on the results of one’s work, to communicate with biochemists and non-biochemists.

Career Outlook

Employment of biochemists and biophysicists is projected to grow 15 percent from 2021 to 2031, much faster than the average for all occupations. About 4,000 openings for biochemists and biophysicists are projected each year, on average, over the decade.

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“One of the reasons I chose biochemistry is because of how well it prepares me for a career in healthcare. Taking classes such as anatomy and physiology and biochemistry significantly helped me with my MCAT. The faculty spend as much time as possible with their students and it's a major I highly recommend, which has helped me and many other students succeed.”

John Paliakkara Biochemistry major
A Veteran’s Passion for Medicine

After serving in Afghanistan as a hospital corpsman during a seven year stint in the U.S Navy, Kellen Bertrand ’21 returned stateside and set his sights on getting a degree at SUNY Potsdam. He’s now in his final year at the College, and wrapping up a degree in biology and chemistry all while maintaining an impressive 4.0 GPA. In the spring he will be applying to medical school where he plans to parlay his success in into a lifelong career.

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