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Chemical & Biological Engineering

What is a chemical or biological engineer?

Chemical and biological engineers increase crop yields to combat world hunger, create new materials, reduce pollution, and meet energy demands. Instrumental in creating pharmaceuticals and lifesaving devices like the artificial kidney, they also produce consumer products including sandwich bags and shoe soles.

At Mines students work with leading experts like the creator of bacterial cement, a material Reuters enshrined in "Baby Boomer Inventions that Changed the World." They also launch notable ventures of their own such as the award-winning student start-up Hay Camp Brewing Company.


Average Starting Salary

  • 3M
  • Kimberly-Clark
  • Archer Daniels Midland 
  • Cargill
  • Dow Chemical
  • Lafarge  
  • POET
  • Navy Nuclear Program
  • Tate & Lyle


  • manufacturing
  • process design
  • alternative energy
  • petroleum engineering
  • advanced materials or polymers
  • food and household products
  • bioprocessing, biochemical or biomedical engineering
  • semi-conductors
  • environmental engineering

Internships & Co-ops

75% of Mines students gain real-world experience through internships, co-ops, and research opportunities at an average salary of over $17 an hour at 240 employers in 39 states. Students have interned at forensics labs, Dow Chemical, LyondellBasell, and the SD Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

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Global Experiences

Chemical engineering students have helped build an orphanage in Chile and traveled to Germany for a design class and industry tours at Audi, Daimler, Behr, and BASF, the largest chemical producer in the world.

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Not just academic experts, faculty in the Department of Chemical & Biological Engineering consult with industry and government on important regional, national and global projects.

More information is provided by the SD Mines Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering:

An Accelerated Master's Degree in Chemical Engineering is available. The Accelerated Master’s Degree program enables a student to complete both the BS and MS degrees in as little as 5 years.

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