Why study biology at Gettysburg?
When you study biology at Gettysburg College, you learn to become multifaceted and inquisitive by developing critical thinking and problem solving—enduring skills that employers across all industries value. Moreover, earning a biology degree prepares you for diverse career opportunities, including research and education.
Since the field of biology is vast and interconnected, many graduates perform vital roles by ensuring the safety of our food supply, water systems, and ecosystem. Others go on to graduate school to discover ways to prevent human disease as medical scientists or investigate the origin of a disease as an epidemiologist.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, professionals seeking employment in life, physical, and social sciences occupations often earn nearly double the median annual wage for all occupations.
Major in biology
Both the B.S. and B.A. in biology degree programs include a broad range of laboratory and research work, with many opportunities to attend field trips or conduct scientific fieldwork with faculty and peers. If you want to study within the Bachelor of Science in biology program, you’ll take additional courses:
- One additional elective biology course
- One additional course in a related department
Both biology degree programs encourage active participation in labs and seminars to foster key communication skills needed for careers in the sciences.
Explore the complete biology major requirements.
Minor in biology
Gettysburg College offers a six-course biology minor for those who want to supplement their studies in the biology major.
- Biology 111 (or 110 or 113)
- Biology 112
- Four additional biology courses
Minor in neuroscience
The Biology and Psychology departments jointly provide a six-course neuroscience minor, available to all students regardless of their major. To pursue this minor, students must take four core courses and two electives.
Review the neuroscience minor requirements.
With a biology major or minor, you focus on a particular field of study, such as animal behavior, ecology, immunobiology, genetics, or neurobiology. Through studying organisms, populations, and molecular and cellular biology in our core course sequence, you encounter a range of research techniques and disciplines. The bachelor’s degree in biology curriculum ensures you develop the academic foundation to meet your educational goals.
Explore biology courses.
What’s unique about Gettysburg’s Biology Department?
More than 70% of biology majors conduct student research during their time at Gettysburg. Previous undergraduate research experiences in the Biology Department have covered topics such as aquatic toxins, cell cycle regulation, CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats), and marine biodiversity.
Research opportunities in biology are open to all students at any point in their degree program, with faculty members available to help them closely curate their plan. Work within the program may include publishing scientific research or aiding scholars in developing public programming. In addition, students in the department are encouraged to participate in internships, which help them build their résumés and prepare to secure satisfying career experiences after graduation.
Get involved in student research
From presenting research at national science meetings to co-authoring research publications on emerging diseases, our graduates have a stellar track record of leading research with innovation. Learn what some of our former biology students have achieved through research at Gettysburg:
- Conducted research at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama
- Partnered with the Pennsylvania Department of Health to develop a new technique to identify emerging Salmonella strains
- Utilized bioinformatic sequences to identify CRISPR-Cas systems in bacteria
Each research experience is unique since it builds upon your scientific knowledge and provides you with valuable networking opportunities as you progress in your career. You could pursue student-faculty research, cross-disciplinary research with peers, or scientific conferences where you present your research findings.
Explore research opportunities to get started.
Along with traditional research, you may also seek an internship. Former students have completed internships at the following:
- Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture
- Universities such as Cornell, Carnegie Mellon, Thomas Jefferson, and the University of Pittsburgh
- Veterinary clinics
Visit the Center for Career Engagement to view a full catalog of internship opportunities and complete internship application forms.
Each program available in the Biology Department ensures you are ready for the next step in your studies and career. With small class sizes, collaborative faculty, and research opportunities, you’re prepared to enroll in graduate study or start your career.
Explore a list of common fields where biology graduates work:
- Allied health professions
- Physical therapy
- Pre-health professions
- Science research
- Veterinary medicine
The Gettysburg alumni network
To best support you, all Gettysburg biology students have access to the Gettysburg Network through the connectGettysburg platform. More than 32,000 alumni strong, this platform serves as your tool for online engagement, networking, and career mentoring.