Biochemistry Student Opportunities | Saint Francis University
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Biochemistry Student Opportunities

  • We encourage our students to experience life as a Biochemist. We encourage students to partner with a Biology or Chemistry faculty member to start undergraduate research in your Freshman year. We also encourage students to perform internships and/or shadow a medical professional. 

    As a Biochemistry major, you will have the opportunity to join Clubs and Honor Societies in both Biology and Chemistry. The R.O.C.K. program also provides opportunities for community outreach.

    • Research in Biochemistry
    • Student Internships
    • Clubs
    • Honor Societites
    • Outreach
    Research in Biochemistry

    Biochemistry ResearchStudents have the option of continuing an existing research project in Biochemistry or start their own project with the help of faculty in the Biology Department or the Chemistry Department.

    Below are some existing Biochemistry research projects and the faculty mentors.

    • Molecular mechanism of deer velvet antler induced cell proliferation by the PI3/AKT signaling pathway. Faculty: Dr. Irene Wolf
    • Cytochrome c electrochemistry: Investigating the function of proteins in the electron transport chain. Faculty: Dr. Rose Clark
    • Use of a-crystalline and caffeine to prevent cataracts. Faculty: Dr. Balazs Hargittai
    • Specificity of mitochondrial transcription factor A (TFAM) binding to mitochondrial DNA. Faculty: Dr. Michele Hargittai
    • Model Compounds of hydroxylamine oxidoreductase. Faculty: Dr. Edward Zovinka


    Student Internships

    Internships and shadowing of medical professionals give you an opportunity to learn how your coursework can be used in the biochemical or medical field.  Our students have performed internships at:

    • AbbVie Pharmaceuticals
    • Henwill Industries
    • Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) at the University of West Virginia

    Chemistry Club - ACS student affiliates

    The American Chemical Society Student Chapter is an organization dedicated to showing the university and the general community how fun science can be. We host and participate in a wide variety of campus events, including National Chemistry Week and the Solar 5K. We also partner closely with ROCK (Rural Outreach Chemistry for Kids) to offer our members many community service opportunities throughout the school year.

    Biology Club 

    The Biology club  has been designed to enhance the education and biology interests of students on campus. Activities and trips allow students to explore the world in a fun and educational way. 
    Speakers are frequently invited in to allow students to gain perspective and greater understanding of many topics related to biology. This club is designed to help students prepare for their future in the sciences as well as to offer opportunities to participate in fellowship and networking activities.


    Environmental Action Society

    The Saint Francis Environmental Action Society is a student club focused on environmental awareness and preservation.  Recently, they have participated in projects such as SFU Earth Day Carnival Organizers, International Day of Climate Action, Adopt-a-Highway litter cleanup at Prince Gallitzin State Park, Yale Environmental Leadership Conference, Math and Science Saturday presentation at Foot-of-Ten elementary school in Hollidaysburg, Backpacking and hiking trips, SFU Day of Reflection Watershed Trail Clean-up, and the Recycled Gift Christmas Party.

    Our organization promotes environmental education to the students, faculty, and staff of Saint Francis University. Our goal also includes promoting environmental awareness in the community at large.


    Honor Societites

    As a Biochemist, you can join both the TriBeta Biological Honor Society and the Gamma Sigma Epsilon Chemistry Honor Society.

    TriBeta Biological Honor Society

    Saint Francis is home to the Upsilon Beta Chapter of Beta Beta Beta, the National Biological Honor Society. Our chapter was established in 1980 with twenty active student members and five faculty. Since that time, the Upsilon Beta chapter has inducted 199 regular, 33 associate, and 5 faculty members. Numerous student members have have received research scholarship grants from the TriBeta national office, and presented their research at the District Convention. Students who place in the poster or oral presentations receive a scholarship to attend the national meeting. Saint Francis University hosted the NE3 district convention for the first time in 2007.


    Gamma Sigma Epsilon Chemistry Honor Society

    Gamma Sigma Epsilon is a national chemistry honor society founded in 1919 at Davidson College. The fraternity was created to promote academic excellence and undergraduate research scholarship in chemistry.  An invitation to membership in Gamma Sigma Epsilon is a coveted honor among students in chemistry. 



    R.O.C.K. (Rural Outreach Chemistry for Kids)

    In the R.O.C.K. program you can work with local K-12 students to show that science (especially chemistry) is important in everyone's life and can be exciting. R.O.C.K. volunteers perform hands-on chemistry experiments and activities using mainly household products.  We focus on classroom visits (not stage presentations) in the 5 county area around SFU (Bedford, Blair, Cambria, Clearfield, and Somerset). R.O.C.K. also looks at the role that chemistry will have in the future as well as how it will benefit our society. Our chemistry students participate in a minimum of six R.O.C.K. events each academic year.