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Biology B.S.

Program Type: 
Major
Degree: 
Bachelor of Science
Department: 
Biology

The BS in biology offers preparation for graduate school and a sound basis for professional training in biological and health sciences. Biology is a broad field, and students can tailor their programs to fit personal interests or career aspirations.

The two subplans: genetics, cell and development, & ecology, evolution and behavior, are the two major emphases in the study and practice of biology and choice of upper division electives gives students the flexibility to further focus their degree programs.

The Department of Biology encourages students to develop as active scholars and to participate in undergraduate research. The degree involves faculty from multiple departments in the Swenson College of Science and Engineering and the UM Medical School.

  • Active learning environment
  • Access to state-of-the–art instrumentation
  • Focus on undergraduate teaching and research

Acquired Skills

  • Comprehension - Students will know and be able to explain the basic definitions and core concepts in their respective field of study.
  • Application - Students will be able to apply biology knowledge and techniques towards solutions to problems.
  • Analysis - Students will be able to determine an appropriate method for research, collect data and carry out the research using techniques and equipment specific to their field.
  • Communication - Students will be able to write about scientific ideas and present their ideas and findings to technical and non-technical audiences.

Career Possibilities

Biologists with a Bachelor’s degree often do laboratory or field-based work directly related to their undergraduate training. For example:

  • Work in an academic or private industry research lab.

  • Join a biology-based agency such as the state’s department of natural resources or forestry service

  • Get hired by federal agencies such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or U.S. Department of Agriculture

  • Do environmental assessments or wildlife surveys with a consulting firm

Admissions and Scholarships

In addition to SCSE scholarships, our department has several scholarships including, the A. Jane Berry Warren Scholarship, Karim Pre-Veterinary Medicine Scholarship, Ernest and Tyyne niemu Scholarship, the T.O. Odlaug Scholarship, the Ed and Alma Turcotte Scholarship, the Mowbray Scholarship, the Jon McCabe Scholarship,  the UMD Peterson Memorial Scholarship, and the Solidarity Through Science Scholarship.

Student Clubs

We have 2 biology clubs on campus. The Biology club allows students to interact socially and academically with peers and department faculty, contribute to service projects and fundraisers, take a break from your studies, enjoy activities like picnics, camping trips, bowling excursions with faculty and intramural sports, Ask questions about biology classes or faculty, Share feedback and get information from departmental administrators.

The Entomology club is open to anyone that is interested in insects. Students meet to discuss and explore various topics in entomology through scientific articles, field outings, and by sharing personal experiences (insects gathered, photographed, witnessed, etc.). Members also volunteer with U of M Extension Service to provide insect identification help and outreach activities for the public.

In addition to these clubs, some of our chemistry majors are involved in pre-professional clubs such as the following: Pre-Dentistry Club, Pre-Medicine Club (Pre-Med Club), Pre Optometry Club, Pre-OT Club, Pre-Pharmacy Club, Pre-Physical Therapy (Pre PT), Pre-Physician Assistant Club (Pre-PA Club), Pre-Veterinary Medicine Club.

Graduate Report

Recent UMD Graduates Job Placement Data & Employers

Here's a sampling of positions Biology B.S. grads have attained six months to one year after graduation.

  • Medical Scribe - Essentia Health, St. Mary's Hospital, Duluth, MN
  • Chemist - City of Superior, Superior, WI
  • Pharmacy Technician - Family Fresh Market, Farmington, MN
  • Clinical Laboratory Technologist - Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
  • Seed Processing Plant Technician - Prairie Restorations, Inc., Cloquet, MN
  • Aeromedical Evacuation Technician - United States Air Force Reserve, Minneapolis, MN
  • Research Assistant - University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC

For more data see the Biology B.S. Graduate Follow-Up Report.
For ideas about Biology B.S. and other majors visit Career & Internship Services.