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Department Mission and Vision


Student development motivates the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Cal Poly to create a welcoming and inclusive environment that empowers individuals to guide their own destiny in chemistry, biochemistry, and beyond. We provide opportunities for original scientific engagement; facilitate meaningful interactions within our teaching spaces and our community; advance science in a rewarding and adventurous manner; and support the growth and development of the Department. 

Vision Statement

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Cal Poly envisions a premier, undergraduate-focused destination for students inspired to join the next generation of innovative leaders in their field. We will do this by: 

  • Establishing a community that welcomes diverse perspectives, values critical thinking, and supports each member as an individual 
  • Attracting and supporting a community of learners, students, staff, and faculty, that reflects the diversity of the state of California 
  • Focusing on undergraduate education through excellent teaching, creating impactful learning experiences in the classroom, research, and community
  • Ensuring students have hands-on experiences and the critical thinking skills needed to adapt and thrive in a broad-range of professional environments, with graduates universally recognized as being ready and able to contribute to their field 
  • Building a vibrant faculty and staff who strive towards success in their fields and are supported as they pursue their career goals in the classroom, laboratory, and greater community 
  • Incorporating inclusive pedagogical and community-building practices to address and close historical achievement gaps 

Value Statement

The development of students is the primary purpose and motivation for our efforts in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Cal Poly. To this end, we value excellence in teaching; we value the development of scientists through hands-on experiences and meaningful interactions with faculty and staff in all Departmental facilities and spaces; and we value faculty’s personal growth and professional advancement in scholarship, teaching, and community outreach. We collectively embrace these core values, which guide our conduct and decisions toward fulfilling our mission.

We believe in supporting student excellence in an inclusive and equitable manner by: 

  • Creating a curriculum that provides a strong foundation in chemistry and biochemistry while developing critical scientific reasoning skills 
  • Providing meaningful hands-on learning opportunities through original research and classroom-based laboratory experiences 
  • Empowering students to develop a sense of belonging and science identity 
  • Building trust, respect, kindness, tolerance, and diversity in the field of chemistry and biochemistry 

We value the advancement of chemistry and biochemistry through original contributions by: 

  • Discovering novel and exciting scientific developments both inside and outside Cal Poly 
  • Supporting one another in our pursuits toward discoveries, including advancing pedagogy 
  • Integrating teaching, research, and service in support of student development 

We encourage a capacity for lifelong inquiry, integrity, and autonomy by: 

  • Instilling an appreciation for critical thinking and a passion for lifelong learning 
  • Practicing mindful and ethical behavior in all situations and at all levels 
  • Creating an environment where students, staff, and faculty can all develop and make contributions according to their own goals and values 

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