The Western New England Biology major can lead to many career paths, from pursuing graduate degrees in the life sciences or in health-related fields to research or teaching. Our rigorous and engaging biology curriculum focuses on connecting theoretical principles to laboratory practice. You’ll enjoy learning and working in the classrooms and laboratories of our Center for the Sciences and Pharmacy, a $40 million facility that provides students with the opportunity to utilize sophisticated state-of-the-art technology and instrumentation. Our distinguished Biology faculty also provides excellent opportunities for our students to actively participate in their research projects.
Why Choose Biology?
The 21st century has been called the Biology Century. That's because biology, the study of life, is the key to solving many of the problems that will face humanity in the coming decades. Everything from new cancer treatments, to increasing crop yield for food production, to fighting infectious disease, has its genesis in the study of biology. The Biology major is excellent preparation for medical, dental, or veterinary programs. Choosing a career in research can help you make an impact on health and the environment. You may also pursue a degree in Secondary Education to become a classroom teacher.
What Will You Study?
At Western New England University, you will get a comprehensive education in general and molecular biology, with a focus on biochemistry, cell biology, organismal form and function, evolution, and ecology. Specifically, you'll gain a solid understanding of the basic structure and functioning of cells, organisms, and populations, including basic evolutionary and ecological principles. By emphasizing laboratory work, you'll study a diverse range of scientific topics, from cell biology to organic chemistry, as well as a general liberal arts curriculum. Working in the labs of the Center for the Sciences and Pharmacy, you will gain practical experience with instrumentation and methodologies used in laboratory work, a crucial aspect of the Biology major.
Our Biology alumni have successfully entered many diverse career paths in health fields, including medicine, dentistry, physical therapy, and pharmacy. Other graduates have enrolled in graduate programs that lead to advanced degrees in many areas of the biological sciences and education. Skills learned in our laboratory courses have led to careers as laboratory technicians in biotechnology, environmental testing, and forensics. One recent graduate works for a company developing patient-specific expanded cellular therapies for use in the treatment of patients with severe diseases and conditions. Another recent graduate is pursuing an MS degree in Imaging & Microscopy at the University College Dublin (Ireland).
You will be mentored by outstanding faculty, who have studied at institutions such as University of Massachusetts, Amherst and UMass Medical School, Dartmouth, Kent State University, University of Connecticut, and the University of Western Ontario. Their diverse research interests include such fields as human evolution, diabetes, plant pathogens, bioremediation, and environmental toxicology. Our distinguished biology faculty conducts fascinating research, yet outstanding classroom teaching is always each professor's top priority.
Unique Learning Opportunities
Internships and Field Work
The Biology major offers some exciting internships for qualified students. Students have interned with the Western Massachusetts State Police Crime Lab, one student developed methods of enabling bloody fingerprints to be detected in crime scenes that had been painted over; Con-Test Analytical Laboratory, an environmental testing firm that works with soil samples, learning how to set up and prepare testing procedures; the Springfield Science Museum, working as an instructor; and Baystate Medical Center, assisting doctors with a research project through patient interviews. Other internship sites include New England Orthopedic Surgeons, FloDesign Sonics, Hampden County Superior Court Probation Office, and Caring Health Center, Inc.
Study Abroad: Become a Global Citizen
Today’s workforce needs professionals who see the big picture. The College of Arts and Sciences will help you to become a student of world cultures and histories as they relate to your studies while making valuable contributions in your explorations. Whether you participate in a faculty-led summer seminar course or spend a semester at an international university, the experience will broaden your horizons and help you compete in the global landscape.