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Biology Student Opportunities

  • Explore the Possibilities

    In our biology program, you will have plenty of opportunities in the classroom and beyond. Below are just a few of the opportunities waiting for you as a future biology student: 

    • Undergraduate Research
    • Beyond the Classroom
    • Clubs & Societies
    • Study Abroad
    Undergraduate Research

    Undergraduate Research in the Lab and Field


    In the biology department, students are encouraged to explore a significant research question in their area of interest. The expertise of our faculty spans the full range of disciplines within biology, including molecular biology, genetics, physiology, ecology, and evolutionary biology. They maintain active research programs that are explicitly designed to incorporate undergraduates in the planning, execution, data analysis, and publication. After consultation with a faculty mentor, students will conduct a literature review of the subject and develop a proposal. Students then work closely with their faculty mentor to complete the project. Examples of recent student projects include studies of bacterial diversity in caves, dragonfly and damselfly ecology, zinc deficiency effects on mouse reproduction, mutational analyses in yeast, molecular stress responses in plants, and communication among Anolis lizards. SFU students present their research at local, regional, national, and international scientific conferences, and are included as authors on publications of their research that are submitted to peer-reviewed, scientific journals.

    Internships & Networking

    We are committed to helping you explore internship opportunities to give you that extra edge when you are searching for a job after graduation. We work with several organizations that offer research programs or other opportunities for undergraduates. Biology faculty serve as academic advisers for all biology majors, and work closely with students to find relevant internships, employment, and graduate school opportunities.

    Beyond the Classroom

    Raystown Immersion Experience


    "Live by the lake" at the beautiful Raystown Field Station, which is nestled at the edge of Raystown Lake near Huntingdon, Pennsylvania. In a cooperative agreement with Juniata College, SFU students and Juniata students engage in hands-on science courses and related activities, all while living at the field station for the entire semester.

    Lake Saint Francis Water Shed Trail


    Located on the edge of campus, the trail was designed to provide access to the University's quieter, more natural areas and to increase knowledge of our local ecology. In addition to its recreational use, the trail and surrounding ecosystem are used by the Biology Department and other members of the campus and local community as a site to conduct scientific research and to promote environmental education.

    Take a Virtual Walk on the Watershed Trail with Dr. Meadows!

    Clubs & Societies

    SCUBA Club


    The Saint Francis University Scuba Club offers students the opportunity to learn to scuba dive, continue to build their diving skills, travel to various diving locations, and have fun with others while exploring the fascinating underwater world. Various activities are sponsored by the Scuba Club throughout the year to keep divers actively involved in the sport.

    Environmental Action Society


    Recently we 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.

    TriBeta Biological Honorary Society


    Saint Francis is home to the Upsilon Beta Chapter of Beta Beta Beta Biological Honorary Society.

    Study Abroad

    Field Biology Course


    BIOL 322 Field Biology course has allowed students to study biological systems around the world, including Australia, the Galapagos, and Belize.  

    In Spring 2016, the course traveled to Crystal River, Florida, to study manatees.  One student, Kaitlin Meck, produced this video about her experience:



    SCUBA Diving in St. Lucia


    Saint Francis students can take SCUBA courses while visiting St. Lucia in the Eastern Caribbean.