Biology is a broad science – the study of all living things – that can lead you in many diverse and exciting career directions. From preserving ecosystems in our national parks to microscopic research, teaching biology, and crime scene investigation, the career options a bachelor’s degree in Biology offers are virtually limitless. Southern Utah University’s biology major honors the diversity of this fascinating science by encouraging students who are interested in a variety of areas, including:
- Forensic Science
- Biology Education
Because classes are purposely kept small, students have opportunities to work closely with their Biology instructors on research projects, assignments, and field trips to the major eco-regions located within driving distance of SUU. As a result, students form strong mentoring relationships with instructors that can be useful when arranging internships, locating jobs in the Biology field, and gaining acceptance into graduate or professional school.
The Biology Department is full of curious people – students who want to understand the world, the human body, an organism and everything in between. After speaking with several students studying biology at SUU, we created pointers for students interested in pursuing this fascinating career field.
Here are 10 pointers for biology majors.
1. Study to Succeed – If you take the time to study, you will be rewarded not only with good grades but an easier entry into graduate or medical school.
2. Develop Soft Skills – The Biology Department understands the balance of research, writing and communication skills. Professors plan assignments that vary in content and execution.
3. Learn Outside the Classroom – Because SUU is in Cedar City, there is an advantage for students to see a variety of ecosystems within an hour’s drive and to have outdoor experiences to help practice research methods taught in the classroom.
4. Become an Intern – SUU is partnered with multiple companies, including the BLM, IIC, and the Public Lands, all of which offer hundreds of internship opportunities to students each year. Get an internship over the summer to add experience to your resume and to broaden your scope of understanding.
|(Disclaimer: Student pictured is Alex Nielson, not Coral Gardner)|
5. Gain Industry Mentors – Your professors are a huge asset to you during school. They can help mentor and guide your career path for the future. Take advantage of these industry experts by assisting with their research. According to Coral Gardner, junior Biology major, “The greatest thing about SUU is the research opportunities as an undergraduate. If you are interested in research or have a question, talk to your professors. They want to help you study your interests. SUU has a great record for research projects worthy of a published paper.”
6. Plan with your Advisor – Meet your academic advisor early on to plan which courses you will take each semester. In the Biology Department, some classes are only taught a specific semester and some are only offered every other year. Plan now so you don’t hurt your academic timeline later on.
7. Utilize Study Groups – The Biology Department, as stated before, is full of like-minded people. Make friends early on to help you stay sane throughout school and to create unstoppable study groups.
8. Find a Close Substitute – If you find that a biology degree isn’t for you, there are similar options available at SUU. Look into the GIS program, getting a degree in chemistry or going into nursing.
9. Prepare for the Job Field – There are so many career options for a biology major. Medicine, forestry, veterinary studies, forensics, research, hydrology and genetics are only a few of the hundreds of jobs SUU helps prepare you for.
10. Join the Community – If you are interested in medicine, then join the Rural Health Scholars for once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to travel and treat patients around the world. SUU also has a Biology Club and an Agriculture Club that can help widen your networking circle and provide unique service opportunities.