Carroll College, Helena Montana

Undergraduate Research

Research at Carroll College

Many faculty in the Chemistry department conduct research continually.  Opportunities to work on research in the areas of mechanistic investigations, materials synthesis, development and optimization of new synthetic methods, environmental monitoring and remediation, as well as developing new methods of chemical education are all projects that welcome the participation of our STEM majors.  Current research projects include:


  • neurodegenerative diseases of prion protein (Gretch)
  • synthesis, testing, and optimization of materials for use in OLED's (Pharr)
  • investigation of fundamental chemical mechanisms behind the harvesting of renewable solar energy (Rowley)
  • catalytic activation of nitriles using abundant transition metals (Thomas)
  • chemical education (Thomas, Strode)

If you would like to participate in one of these projects, or suggest a research project of your own, contact the professor you are interested in working with.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REUs)

Besides the research opportunities available at Carroll, the National Science Foundation supports summer undergraduate researchers at other institutions.  A stipend, typically $4-5K, and housing are frequently covered by the program.  A wide variety of research projects are available, at U.S. institutions both nearby (Montana State University) and far away.  A complete listing of host institutions and research foci are available at the NSF-REU website.

Often Carroll students use the research conducted over these summer programs to complete an honors thesis.  Carroll College has a strong record of placement in these, often highly competitive, programs.  In the past decade 36 Carroll students have participated in the NSF-REU program at 23 different locations including:

Jet Propulsion Lab (Pasadena, CA)
Colorado State University (Fort Collins, CO)
University of California, Berkeley (Berkeley, CA)
University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, PA)

If you would like to discuss the possibility of summer research through the NSF-REU program contact Dr. Pharr.

Research Opportunities!

If you are interested in conducting research with one of the chemistry professors at Carroll click on the links to your left to see what we are studying.  You can also send us an email and we would be happy to set up a meeting to discuss our research and opportunities to join our research group.  


Carroll's Biology and Chemistry Programs offer students excellent internship opportunities with the Montana Department of Environmental Quality, Shodair Hospital Cytogenetics Laboratory, private environmental consultant firms, and the Montana Heritage Program. In addition to the academic credits earned during the internship, students have an opportunity to apply classroom principles to real problems around Montana.