Biology - From Classroom to Career Senior Year
Capstone Courses / Independent Study
Use the Capstone Course to integrate what you have learned, reflect upon how you have grown at Fairfield, and visualize where your path will lead you next. The course is usually a chance to also sharpen research skills, strengthen your student Portfolio, and make fresh connections among courses and experiences.
I've always wanted to give back because Fairfield is doing the right thing. The value system, morals, and Jesuit perspective ingrained in Fairfield's curriculum are aspects of my education that I rely on each day as a medical professional. I love reading about the Nursing School. They are training people to help others. Fairfield is an institution that allows students to truly think, and inspires reflection and community contribution. Fairfield is going to change the world because of its innovative atmosphere, willingness to experiment, and vision for the student body. I want to be a part of that vision. - Dr. John Araujo '91; biology major; medical doctor, MD Anderson Cancer Center, The University of Texas
Students can become Teaching Assistants in upper division labs. Biology also has peer learning groups (or PLGs) led by upper-level qualified biology students. Get some teaching experience! Talk to the Department Chair for details.
Attend the annual Sigma Xi poster session, held in Bannow every spring. Post your own work, or see the work of other Biology majors. Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society, was founded in 1886 as an honor society for scientists and engineers. Contact: Dr. Jim Biardi, advisor; (203) 254-4000 ext. 3465; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
The campus vegetable and herb garden, located across from the Charles F. Dolan School of Business, is maintained using organic practices and harvested crops are used to prepare meals on campus or donated to local food banks. Talk to biology faculty Jen Klug or Tod Osier if you're interested in participating in this community outreach program.
Come and Hear From the Experts
The annual Biology Lecture Series brings to campus scientists from various biology disciplines who share their expertise, discoveries and experiences with students and faculty. The lecture series is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Donald J. Ross Sr., a long-time biology professor."
Visit the website for lecture details, dates, and locations.
Look for ways to use classwork, internships, summer work and potential independent studies to further your interest.
Example: The project was designed to test the results of recent research on Diabetes Mellitus by Dr. Greco which states that a low carbohydrate, high protein, high fat diet is preferable to manage DM and will in some cases induce diabetic remission... The purpose of my research project was to test the effects of this type of diet in cats in a small scale setting to determine the practicality of using this diet as treatment for DM in a small animal practice... The results of this research project showed that 4 out of the 5 cats showed a definite improvement in all three of the markers... The results show a general trend of improvement of diabetic condition and thus show the diet to be a practical and useful treatment for DM in a small animal hospital. Companion Animal Hospital has begun to keep Purina DM in stock and has implemented the diet as part of the regular DM treatment. These pets will remain on DM diet, and will hopefully continue to show decreases in weight, BG, and insulin. I plan to check on the status of these cats after several more months on the diet to see if any have reached diabetic remission and are no longer in need of insulin supplementation to manage their diabetes. - Stephanie Preli '10; Biology
Hear From the Pros
The Biology Lecture Series features scientists coming to campus to talk to students and others about their research. The series topics and dates are posted each Fall. It is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Donald J. Ross Sr., long-time biology professor.
Use your final internship(s) to try out careers, sharpen your resume and cover letter, develop a portfolio, make contacts, and take classroom skills and apply them to the real world.
Line Up References
Finalize three or more professors from Biology and elsewhere who might serve as professional references for you. Discuss your future plans with them and ask for guidance.
Talk to a favorite professor about possible graduate schoolwork in Biology. Also talk to them about possible research projects you might do with them. Many Biology graduates continue to Grad school for Masters and Ph.D. programs, in schools such as Yale, Brown University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, New York University, and Stony Brook.
In Health Professions, your applications should be in and you will be watching the mail. You may have secondary applications to fill out but your real concern should be interviews. See Dr. Church for lists of commonly asked interview questions, or to schedule a mock interview to help you prepare for the BIG day! If you have finished all core and major requirements you may take whatever classes interest you. This is a great opportunity to learn something special! Remember to keep your GPA up! As a rule, medical students should have at least a 3.5. If your GPA drops below 3.0 it is unlikely that you will be accepted into any American medical schools. Other programs have somewhat lower GPA requirements, but whatever your aspirations you should strive to stay above 3.0.
BASE Camp (Broadening Access to Science Education)
BASE Camp projects offer juniors and seniors a chance to serve as camp counselors in a fun, week-long experience with actual scientific research, across all scientific disciplines at Fairfield. Projects change every year, allowing students to choose from a variety of topics including biomedical science, medicinal chemistry, forensics, developmental biology, evolutionary biology, marine ecology, software engineering, behavioral psychology, neuroscience, and biophysics, and applied mathematics. See department chair for details.
That's just the start. Take a look at this career information from other University offices that we think is also valuable to Biology majors.