Travel Opportunities in Chemistry

Travel the United States!

Each year we travel with our majors to regional and national meetings of the American Chemical Society (ACS) and the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology where students present the results of their research and chapter activities and deepen and develop professional relationships. Students have traveled to San Francisco, Salt Lake City and Orlando among other cities.

For those of you with an interest in human health, you may also be interested in taking part in a faculty-led summer course to the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota, home to the Sicangu Oyate. In this Integrative Studies (INST) course, students learn the rich history and culture of Rosebud and other Lakota Sioux peoples through readings and cultural experiences led by Lakota teachers, artists, and political and religious leaders. Students take part in service-learning activities, with a focus on those that relate to the unique health challenges of Indian reservations. This INST 3910 course provides a unique and moving cross-cultural experience.

Travel the world!

Travel the world by working with a faculty advisor and the university to plan your own study abroad experience or taking part in one of our faculty-led study abroad courses. Through these experiences, you can deepen an intercultural mindset and develop relationships with culturally different others. Students in our department have spent semesters abroad in Australia and England.

Dr. Joan Esson teaches a faculty-led study abroad course to Italy and is developing a course to Guatemala and Mexico. Students take the May term Italy course as part of the Integrative Studies program or an Independent Study in Chemistry. The course focuses on the preservation of cultural heritage and students learn from scientists, conservators and others as we travel northern Italy from Milan to Venice, study in the Tuscan capital of Florence, and explore Rome. For example, students not only see frescoes by Leonardo da Vinci but also study microscopic samples collected from these paintings to understand their degradation, not only visit Venice but also take an aquatic lagoon tour to examine the environmental impacts of climate change and other human impacts on the city.

Travel Course Participants In FlorenceMay 2018 Italy Travel Course Participants in Florence.


In addition to the travel course to Italy, there are many other faculty-led travel courses that you might be interested in – from an INST course that travels to Costa Rica where you learn how to prepare traditional medicines from local plants among other activities to a Senior-Year Experience course where students travel with the Otterbein Medical Brigades to Panama, Honduras, Nicaragua or Ghana to set up mobile medical clinics.

Travel Course Participants In FlorenceExamining paint samples from Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper under a microscope at the Politecnico di Milano.


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Being abroad and out of my comfort zone pushed me to think deeper about science since the classes were taught in slightly different methods from what I had been used to. It also helped me develop more self-confidence in my abilities which has been paramount to graduate school work.
Otterbein enabled me to study abroad, while keeping me on track to complete my two degrees without delaying my graduation date. The experiences and lifelong friendships I gained from being in Australia would not have been possible without the support of everyone at Otterbein.

Erin Hughes ’19
Erin Hughes

You know more of a road by having traveled it than by all the conjectures and descriptions in the world.

William Hazlitt >