About

The College of Sciences offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees to approximately 3,000 students in various areas.

With more than 100 full-time faculty, the college has created a well-rounded curriculum by combining practical and empirical knowledge with scientific fundamentals and principles, which provides a solid foundation for a successful career in the sciences and other professional programs.

Hands-on Research

The research opportunities available to our students and faculty allow them to make inquiries and observations necessary for scientific discoveries. These discoveries are helping to protect and preserve Nevada and its citizens.

Community Service

Students participate in many programs that foster a positive relationship between the students of UNLV and members of the community.

Great Facilities

Students have access to facilities, laboratories, research centers, and institutes on campus and throughout the country. This access enhances the classroom experience, fosters educational development, and builds relationships within the scientific community.

Preparation for Life

The college offers programs in life sciences, chemistry and biochemistry, geoscience, mathematical sciences, physics and astronomy, and water management. It also offers guidance for students seeking professional careers in the medical, dental, chiropractic, and pharmaceutical fields.

The student-faculty relationship, hands-on research, and community service help ensure that students who graduate are prepared for whatever path they choose.

Mission Statement

The mission of the College of Sciences is to serve the students of UNLV, the citizens of Nevada and the United States, and society worldwide through research and discovery that expands knowledge in the natural, physical, and mathematical sciences. We communicate this knowledge to students in a rewarding learning environment, and to communities beyond the university through active engagement of diverse constituencies.

The College of Sciences endeavors to develop and nurture a community of scientists and scholars who are among the world leaders in their disciplinary areas, and who generate knowledge at the forefront of science. Research and discovery, in symbiosis with education, are our hallmarks. Addressing fundamental questions related to earth sciences, biological systems, physical and chemical systems, mathematics, and the universe will continue to be core focus areas. In conjunction with colleagues within and outside of the university, faculty and students participate in the application and exploitation of our scientific discoveries and expertise to the benefit of the university, the citizens of Nevada, and society at large.

The College of Sciences creates innovative and engaging learning environments in which students are educated to the full extent of their abilities. Our programs produce highly skilled and knowledgeable scientists educated in a premier research environment. In addition, we provide the education needed by diverse student populations, ranging from formal grounding in the sciences for technical disciplines, to a general appreciation and understanding of the sciences for non-specialists. We strive to develop comprehensive educational initiatives and services, and engage our alumni and friends in mutually beneficial relationships in support of teaching, research, and community service activities.

“The eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility.”

Albert Einstein

Dean's Welcome

Stanley D. Smith
Stanley D. Smith

Welcome to the College of Sciences at UNLV. As an undergraduate or graduate student in the College of Sciences, you will have an opportunity to learn from nationally and internationally recognized scholars in astronomy, chemistry, geoscience, life sciences, mathematics, physics, and other interdisciplinary programs in the sciences.

Combining top-tier instruction with world-class research facilities, students study science and mathematics from the fundamental workings of nature through the application of science and mathematics directed at the many challenges facing society and mankind today. Our programs offer the Bachelor of Science degree through the Doctor of Philosophy degree, preparing students for a wide variety of scientific, professional and educational careers.

In these web pages you can read about our distinguished faculty and departments, our diverse study opportunities, our highly successful pre-professional program, and the many other ways in which we engage and challenge students here at UNLV.

About Stanley D. Smith

Dr. Stan Smith received his Ph.D. in botany from Arizona State University in 1981. After a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at UCLA, two years as an assistant research professor at the Desert Research Institute in Reno, and a visiting fellowship at the Australian National University in Canberra, he joined the UNLV Department of Biological Sciences (now School of Life Sciences) faculty in 1986.

From 2007-2016, Smith served as the Associate Vice President for Research. In that role, he coordinated several university units that provide specialized services to university researchers in the areas of research compliance and support. As a researcher, he specializes in desert ecology and the effects of global change on desert ecosystems. Smith has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed publications that have collectively been cited over 7,000 times. He has received UNLV’s two highest research awards — the Harry Reid Silver State Research Award (2003) and the Barrick Distinguished Scholar Award (2006). Smith currently serves as the acting dean of the College of Sciences.