Career Possibilities

Career Planning & Opportunities

Because of the very inter-disciplinary nature of biology and because many of the world's problems have a biological basis, we believe that our curricula in biology provide students with a strong preparation for many careers as well as for advanced study. The various options in biology permit students to explore specific areas of biological science while maintaining a strong foundation in the discipline. Your academic record includes much more than a grade-point-average; the courses you take, the knowledge you gain from your courses and from study outside formal course material, the independent study project(s) you pursue, the work experience you receive, the colloquia and seminars you participate in, the scientific meetings you attend, the papers you present at meetings or publish in scientific journals, the leadership roles you assume in student organizations, the community activities you donate your time and efforts will all make you a very competitive candidate in your future endeavors. Students at Millersville find time to add the activities mentioned above to their busy schedules, even with a full course load. The best way to prepare for the future is to participate in the Millersville community today.

Career tracks

Many of our graduates have completed Graduate School and now hold academic positions at Tufts, Wilkes, Shippensburg, and Mansfield Universities; the Universities of Washington (Seattle), Maryland, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Virginia; Wabash College, Stockton College (NJ), George Mason University, VPI, Temple, and others.

Other graduates include a Veterinarian at Wild Kingdom in Disney World (FL), scientists at the Smithsonian Institutes, as well as Animal trainers, keepers, and educational specialists at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, the Baltimore Zoo, Seaworld, the Aquarium of the Americas (New Orleans), and other facilities. Biology graduates have completed MD, DPM, and DO degrees and practice medicine in a number of the states.

Our graduates in molecular biology work in research, development, or production at Merck, Amersham, Myriad Genetics, Genelogic, Wistar Institute, National Cancer Institute, Immune Response Corp, Smith, Kline, and Beecham as well as others.

Our Allied Health graduates are employed all over eastern and central PA in at least 25 hospitals and medical centers. Our Respiratory Therapy Option graduates typically have 2-4 job offers upon completion of their degrees, and hold positions in Maine, Massachusetts, and a number of other states as well as Pennsylvania.

Major employers of our Biology graduates include: Lancaster Labs, Wyeth Ayerst, Lancaster General Hospital, the State of PA, the state of Florida, several plant nurseries, several regional environmental consulting firms, a variety of health care facilities, several zoological parks and aquaria, and most regional school districts.

Jobs Obtained by Recent Graduates (PDF)

Resources in Career Planning

Office of Experiential Learning and Career Management

The office of Experiential Learning and Career Management administers a variety of career-related services. These include internships, volunteer activities, job fairs, and assistance with preparation of career plans, resumes, LinkedIn profiles, and job searches. The office is located in Bedford House and can be reached by phone at X-7655.

McNairy Library at Ganser Hall

In addition to a collection of all current catalogs for colleges, universities, graduate and professional schools, the reference section of McNairy Library contains a number of volumes which describe and evaluate graduate school programs. If you have an interest in a particular profession or sub-discipline of biology, perhaps you should use the Encyclopedia of Associations in the reference section of Ganser Library to identify the locations of the main office of the organization, the phone number(s), and chief officer(s). These organizations are most willing to provide literature which describes professions and employment prospects for the future. Use the computer data bases in the reference section of Ganser Library to evaluate the financial health of a company with which you may wish to work.

Cooperative Work Experience

Employers and graduate/professional schools are often impressed with students who have had some work experience in the discipline they are about to enter. Not only does work experience demonstrate student's interest in a particular vocation, but it illustrates that the student has had a "taste" of the work and desires to do more; these candidates are more likely to be successful when compared with the inexperienced. See the section on Cooperative Education in Biology.

Department of Biology Information

The Department of Biology receives thousands of fliers and informational bulletins about special courses, workshops, graduate and professional school programs. These are sorted according to discipline and filed in the file holders on the wall adjacent to Roddy R-265. Feel free to peruse these files. Should you locate some information of particular interest to you, feel free to copy the pertinent information and return the original to the holder so that others may use it. The faculty of the department of biology is an excellent source of information.

Allied Health Coordinator: Dr. Cebra-Thomas

Dr. Cebra-Thomas  is the Allied Health Coordinator for all students with an interest in the health professions. In order to introduce students to a variety of opportunities in the health professions, the department of biology offers a one credit course: Introduction to the Allied Health Professions (BIOL 257). Information about the allied health programs and application procedures for internships and professional school admissions can be obtained from the Allied Health Coordinator.

Graduate and Professional Schools

Many students decide that they want to proceed with their educations in graduate and/or professional schools. While it is often desirable for students to gain some work experience prior to proceeding to post- graduate education, the groundwork for advanced education should be initiated while the student is in their third year. Identify the profession and/or sub-discipline of biology you desire to pursue with advanced study. Then use the reference section of Ganser Library to learn about viable programs. You should write to schools of interest in order to obtain information on the major thrusts of inquiry within a particular department/school. In addition, you should begin to read the literature of professors you may wish to work with. Professional and graduate schools all have entrance requirements, obtain applications forms early to learn what is required of you and develop a time line so that you will be able to complete applications in timely fashion. Leave ample time to prepare for examinations such as the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or the MCAT required of students applying to medical schools.

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