MEGAN COURTNEY | News Editor
Beginning with those graduating in December 2019, all students who receive a bachelor of science in chemistry will carry the American Chemical Society accreditation with their degree.
The American Chemical Society, according to Jennifer Firestine, the division chair at Lindenwood, is a “quite large” national organization, and according to the ACS website, its mission is to “advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Earth and its people.”
ACS provides information, education, career services and professional development help to its members, and its vision is to “improve people’s lives through the transforming power of chemistry.”
Firestine said the whole department is ACS approved, and that when determining if the program met accreditation standards, ACS looked at “two big things,” the faculty and curriculum, as well as other things like facilities, support and even the library.
Small changes have been made to the program over ten years, Firestine said, because chemistry has five areas, and “without five faculty with five specialities, we couldn’t qualify.”
When Firestine started at Lindenwood she was one of two faculty, but now she is one of six. She credits the growth of the program with being able to obtain the accreditation.
“We are the only [undergraduate] program in the St. Louis area that now carries this accreditation,” Firestine said.
Washington University, Saint Louis University and University of Missouri – St. Louis also have the ACS accreditation, but only on their postgraduate degrees.
She said it’s a “pretty big deal for a school that does not have graduate students.”
“It’s a little bit of a tougher degree,” Firestine said. “But you get a little bit of a status when you finish it.”