While wandering around my home town over break, seems like the only question that got asked more than "where do you go again?" was "what is your major?". As soon as that question came out of someone's mouth, I had three options: lie, be as vague as possible, or get into a long winded conversation. That's right, I've decided to be one of those difficult people who self designs her own concentration. So, the real answer is that I have a currently pending proposal for a self-designed Engineering major with a concentration in Chemistry. Basically, this consists of taking all of the chemistry classes Olin has offered, and combining those with Materials Science engineering courses and BioE courses that have relevance to chemistry (such as Transport in Biological Systems and Polymers--both of which I'm taking this semester).
So, for those of you who are thinking about attending Olin and have an interest in Chemistry, what does this mean? Well, obviously it doesn't mean too much until it's been accepted. (There have been BioChem major concentrations approved in the past, so that is promising.) But, should the proposal be accepted, it makes it more likely that you will be able to design your own chemistry concentration. That isn't to say that it will be easy--in fact, it probably won't be for years yet. And, it is going to vary based on what classes are offered through the years. In the end, the decision comes down to what you think is right for you- but I'm guessing you already know this. And, who is to say that what you come into Olin thinking you are going to study and what you actually end up studying will be the same-- I know it wasn't for me.