Join the passionate students and faculty of our Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences Program (PCSP). We will prepare you for a career in the increasingly complex and integrated realms of pharmaceutical, chemical and biotechnological research. PCSP is a collaboration between the Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and the Department of Chemistry in the College of the Pacific. The program is closely tied to industrial interests and trends and is designed to provide students with a broad understanding of the pharmaceutical and/or chemical sciences. Earn either a master of science (MS) or a doctor of philosophy (PhD) in pharmaceutical and chemical sciences.

Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences Program
Help revolutionize the future of health care

In addition to core classes students also receive general training in:

  • Industrial process and methodology
  • Laboratory management, risk management and safety
  • Instrumentation and laboratory techniques
  • Statistics and experiential design
  • Ethical and legal aspects of scientific inquiry
  • Exposure to the basic and clinical sciences related to the pharmaceutical industry
  • Experience in professional presentations and data summaries
Roshanak Rahimian in lab with Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences Program graduate student
Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences Program graduate student presents research poster
Program goals and design

The goals of the Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences Program curriculum are:

  • to prepare students for the challenges of both pure and applied research
  • to advance knowledge in the specialization
  • to encourage fundamental discovery in the chemical, pharmaceutical and health-care sciences
  • to attain advanced degrees

Faculty from the departments of chemistry, pharmaceutics and medicinal chemistry, physiology and pharmacology, and pharmacy practice bring their research interest and expertise to the program. Students are encouraged to combine the talents of the faculty into a unique, student-centered and interdisciplinary program that will meet their individual education goals.

Focus areas

The Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences Program allows students to select one of five highly sought after focus areas through four of the University's science departments.

Bioanalytical Chemistry, Physical Chemistry and Biochemistry

Investigation of chemical, biochemical and biomedical questions using a broad range of computational and experimental tools including state-of-the-art instrumentation, synthetic methods and molecular techniques. This area of focus is offered by the Department of Chemistry.

Biopharmaceutical Sciences

This focus area involves the study of applied and basic sciences in drug targeting/delivery/disposition/discovery and chemical biology. Selectivity of drug delivery, understanding of cellular mechanisms for novel drug discovery and design, and molecular mechanisms contributing to drug pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics are emphasized. This focus area is offered through the Department of Pharmaceutics and Medicinal Chemistry.

Chemical Synthesis, Drug Discovery and Design

Discovery and development of new chemical entities from synthetic and natural product sources as potential drugs; new methods of chemical synthesis and structural elucidation. This area of focus is offered by the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Pharmaceutics and Medicinal Chemistry.

Health Care Outcomes and Clinical Services

Designed to promote the development of scholars by providing them with the knowledge and analytical skills necessary to evaluate the delivery and use of pharmaceutical/health care products and services, thereby improving medication use, patient-specific outcomes as well as reducing health care costs. This focus area is offered through the Department of Pharmacy Practice.

Molecular-Cellular Physiology and Pharmacology

This research track employs cellular biochemical/biophysical and molecular techniques to investigate physiological and pharmacological regulation of fundamental biological processes and pathological states underlying a spectrum of disease phenomena relating to cardiovascular and neurobiological systems, as well as metabolic and immune system dysfunction, cancer and stem cell biology. This focus area is offered by the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology and the Department of Pharmaceutics and Medicinal Chemistry.

How to apply

Applicants should indicate on the application that they are interested in applying to the Pharmaceutical and Chemical Science Program and their desired area of focus (e.g. Chemical Synthesis, Drug Discovery and Design). Applicants are encouraged to visit the individual faculty pages for their research interests.

Each department evaluates applicants on their record of academic performance, Graduate Record Examination® (GRE) scores, personal statement, and the availability of faculty as advisors to determine the qualification and potential of the students.

Two graudate students conducting research


The GRE® General Exam is required. The minimum combined score for Verbal and Quantitative sections is 303. The minimum Analytical score is 3.0. Scores can be no older than 5 years old.

Bachelor’s degree

Bachelor’s degree with a B average (GPA of 3.0) or higher in all upper-division coursework.



Essay or personal statement focusing on career objectives and personal ideals. Applicants must indicate focus area preference. Grammar and writing skills are an important part of the evaluation.

Letters of recommendation

Three letters of recommendation, no more than one year old.

International applicants

  • International students who attended schools outside of the United States must submit an evaluation of their academic records. Transcripts must be reviewed by one of the following outside evaluation agencies: World Education Services (WES) or Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE). Please request a course-by-course evaluation that includes a grade point average (GPA) and have an official copy sent directly to the Office of Graduate Admission. Student transcripts need to be translated into English before an evaluation can be processed. Please check with the evaluation agency for details on specific document requirements.
  • A Certification of Finances form with all required documents must be completed and sent with the application materials or upon notification of admission by PCSP.
  • Proof of English proficiency is required of all applicants whose native/principle language of instruction is not English. This requirement can be met by minimum scores of 80 (iBT) or 550 (paper) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or 6.5 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Applicants interested in applying for a graduate assistantship must meet minimum scores of 90 (iBT) or 575 (paper) on the TOEFL or 7.0 on the IELTS. Official test score reports are required and can be no older than 2 years old.

Processing time

Application processing time will take anywhere from 8-10 weeks.

If any documentation is missing we will contact you. However, once you have received your university ID number, we encourage you to monitor receipt of items online using the Graduate Application Checker.

Admission decisions

Once your completed application has been reviewed by the Department, the Office of Graduate Admission will notify you of your admission decision by email.

Official admission decisions will be in writing on letterhead from the Office of Graduate Admission. Any verbal or written statements about admission either express or implied from any other source, will not be official.

The Office of Graduate Admission will also notify you by email if you have been awarded financial assistance including teaching and research assistantship awards.

Program start date

Your acceptance for enrollment in the program applies only to the term noted on the admission letter. If you wish to change your entry date, you must request the change from the Office of Graduate Admission.

Please be aware that the Federal Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) prevents us from discussing your application with any third party.


Financial Aid

If you are interested in financial assistance please make sure to indicate your interest on the graduate school admission application. Graduate Assistantships are available to fall and spring applicants.

The program is closely aligned with industrial interests and guided by an external advisory board consisting of scientists, managers, practitioners and Pacific alumni from pharmaceutical, biotechnical and chemical companies as well as research institutes and other universities.

  • Bret Berner, PhD | Chief Science Officer, Chrono Therapeutics, Inc.
  • Kondamraj “Raj” Birudaraj ’01, PhD | Director of Integration and Alliance Management, Roche
  • Simon Chin | President and CEO, Iris BioTechnologies, Inc.
  • David Cippola, PhD | VP of Research, Insmed Incorporated
  • Jeffrey Cleland, PhD | CEO and Founder, Versartis, Inc.
  • John E. Hearst, PhD | Professor Emeritus/Faculty Chemist, University of California Berkeley
  • Ruhong Jiang, PhD | Co-Founder, CEO and President, Applied StemCell, Inc.
  • Brian Johnston, PhD | Founder and CEO, SomaGenics, Inc.
  • Stephen N. Kirnon, EdD | Co-Founder and CEO, PharmaPlan LLC
  • Norman H. Kobayashi ’70, ’73, MS | Principal, Kobayashi & Associates, LLC
  • Sreenivasu Mudumba ’94, ’10, PhD | VP, Modality Innovation, Santen
  • Rajesh A. Patel ’87, PhD | Senior Vice President, Manufacturing Operations, Titan Pharmaceuticals
  • Pasit Phiasivongsa ’98, '02, PhD | Senior Vice President, Pharmaceutical Development, Kronos Bio, Inc.
  • Sanjeev Redkar, PhD | President and Co-Founder, Apollomics Inc.
  • Nirmal K. Saini, MS | Retired, Laboratory Director, California Department of Food and Agriculture, Center for Analytical Chemistry
  • Michael J. Seminerioteva, PhD, MBA | Global Therapeutic Lead, AbbVie
  • Scott Smith, PhD | Director of Formulation and Process Development, Gilead Sciences
  • Cynthia Stevenson, PhD | Pharmaceutical Development Consultant   
  • Abraham U. Surjadinata '94, PharmD | MSL HEOR Market Access, MorphoSys AG
  • Guo-Liang Yu, PhD | Global CEO, Apollomics Inc.
  • D. “Tony” Zhang, PhD | President and CEO, BlueJay Mobile-Health, Inc.
  • Mike Zhou, PhD | President, Advancedseq
  • Nurulain Zaveri, PhD | Founder, President and CSO, Astraea Therapeutics
Contact us

Have questions about Pacific’s Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences program? | 209.946.2396

Have questions about the admission process? | 209.946.3929


Mamoun M. Alhamadsheh in lab with research assistant