The Biology degree program is designed to immerse you in the theories and concepts that drive life, from the molecular forces that govern animal growth and development to the intricate ways our environment influences health. Our program begins with a two-semester introductory sequence that builds a solid foundation of knowledge in cell and molecular biology and biochemistry. Afterwards, these concepts are used to develop a better understanding of how cells work together to build tissues and organ systems, until you have a deep knowledge of animal physiology.
After completing the introductory sequence, you can choose from a junior- and senior-level coursework that addresses your own specific interests in biology. Our program offers expansive instruction in nutrition, food safety, metabolism, cell and molecular biology, biochemistry, and animal development. Our faculty are trained in a broad variety of disciplines, which means that we can help you build a Biology degree that is tailored specifically for you.
What You'll Study
After your introductory sequence and required coursework for your sophomore year (chemistry, anatomy and physiology, and microbiology), you can choose from many different courses taught by experts in their field, including human and animal nutrition, histology, biochemistry, developmental biology, ecology, mammology, and cell biology. You will work with your academic advisor and professors to develop a course plan that matches your interests and career goals.
Biomedical SciencesThe Biomedical Sciences specialization provides a strong foundation in the biological sciences that prepares
students for graduate and professional school programs in health-related and veterinary fields. Careers in these areas
include biotechnology and academic medical research as well as the medical professions like pharmacy, dentistry,
optometry, physical and occupational therapy, and health care administration. This specialization puts a heavy emphasis on increasing familiarity with the most current technologies and therapies.
Pre-Medical SciencesThe Pre-Medical Sciences specialization prepares students for professional programs in the medical field—specifically, medical school and physician's assistant school. Although careers in healthcare are in increasingly high demand, these careers remain extremely competitive. The Pre-Medical Sciences specialization combines the rigor of our Biomedical Sciences curriculum, which provides a comprehensive program of study of biological systems at the chemical, molecular, and cellular level with the clinical components of patient care through the EMS 200 course.
Beyond the Classroom
The faculty in our program strongly emphasize learning beyond lecture. Our laboratories are meticulously planned to further extend our students’ knowledge of the topics we cover during class. From protein expression to cholesterol quantification and sea urchin development, students gain a valuable and marketable skillset in our program.
We also encourage students trying to earn a Biology degree to seek internships at colleges and laboratories around the country. We have been fortunate to place students in incredibly selective summer research programs, including internships at Ivy League schools such as Dartmouth College. Participation in these programs can give our students an edge when applying for highly competitive placement in graduate and professional programs.
Common Career Areas
- Advanced healthcare fields—Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Physician's Assistant, Physician (MD or DO), Pharmacist, Dentist, Optometrist, etc
- Scientific research—Laboratory Technician, Research Professor, Science Policy, Clinical Research
- Biotechnology—Forensic Laboratory, Medical Testing, Microbiologist
- Industrial biology—Pharmaceutical Production and various technicians, including Environmental, Dietetic, and Dialysis
Career information is provided through Vault and O'Net. Current Lees-McRae students can see the full results on Vault using their student email and password.
- Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Student North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine
- Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Student University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine
- Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Student Lincoln Memorial University College of Veterinary Medicine
- Physical Therapy Graduate Student Duke University School of Medicine
- Biomedical Engineering Graduate Student Virginia Tech/Wake Forest University School of Biomedical Engineering
- Exercise Physiology Graduate Student Wake Forrest University
- Nutrition Graduate Student Western North Carolina University
- Cardiology Research Fellow Penn State Hershey Medical Center
- Assistant Brewer Oskar Blues Brewery
Meet the Faculty
Assistant Dean of School of Natural and Behavioral Sciences, Assistant Director of the Stephenson Center, Associate Professor of Biology
Clifton Hackbarth, PhD
Program Coordinator for Biology, Associate Professor of Chemistry and Physics
Dee Medford-Baker, DC
Program Coordinator of Pre-Physical Therapy, Associate Professor of Biology
Visiting Instructor—Biochemistry/Genetics/Molecular Biology