As a biology major, you’ll gain a panoramic view of life – from the molecular to the ecosystem level—and explore a wide variety of career paths in the fields of microbiology, biotechnology, healthcare, and marine science. Your classroom and lab experiences will teach you scientific research methods and reporting, while an internship or senior project at one of Boston's premier hospitals or research facilities will help you deepen your knowledge and broaden your network.

At Suffolk, you can put your laboratory techniques to the test working with faculty on cutting-edge research.
At Suffolk, you can put your laboratory techniques to the test working with faculty on cutting-edge research.

Thanks to our faculty-to-student ratio, you’ll receive personalized attention in classes typically 20 students or less, as well as during one-on-one academic and career advising. Specialized advising for healthcare tracks, including pre-med and pre-dental programs, is readily available. Students from our program frequently go on to pursue advanced degrees in medicine, healthcare, and research or lead successful careers in research science, biomedical jobs, and conservation.

Students in our biology program will:

  • Master a variety of laboratory techniques, such as cell culture, sterile technique, microscopy and histology, and ecological observation
  • Critically assess and engage with biological literature and write reviews of scientific papers
  • Learn statistical programming and data analysis
  • Gain hands-on experience at Boston-based partner institutions working in research labs or with patients
  • Develop communication skills to effectively present research in various settings, including undergraduate science meetings and professional scientific conferences

Experience is Everything

Program Options

Depending on your area of focus, you can earn a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Biology. All students take foundational courses in cell biology, organismal biology, genetics, and ecology. Emphasizing experiential learning opportunities, our curriculum also includes corresponding laboratories and field work to help you develop and enhance your technical and critical-thinking skills. Additionally, if you have a specific professional interest, you can choose to specialize your studies by pursuing one of our three concentrations.

This concentration focuses on molecular and microbiology, with a special emphasis on hands-on laboratory opportunities between your sophomore and junior year. You’ll be well-prepared for a career in research or medicine.

This concentration prepares you for post-graduate programs in healthcare fields such as medicine, physician assistant, dentistry, veterinary medicine, nurse practitioner, physical therapy, pharmacy, and others. You can tailor your coursework for your graduate program of choice while still getting a solid grounding in biology.

This concentration prepares you for a career as a marine biologist, conservationist, zoologist, and other fields related to ecology. It is immersive and features courses taught through the Marine Studies Consortium, a collaborative organization of 16 local institutions. Courses can be taken at the New England Aquarium or online.

View the Biology Major Curriculum

The Minor

Expand your knowledge about living systems and gain hands-on experience in the lab and field with a minor in biology. You’ll take two required introductory courses with their corresponding laboratories and four electives of your choosing.
View the Biology Minor Curriculum

Customize Your Degree

Many biology students choose courses, minors, or double majors in areas that will complement their skills such as:

”My favorite part of working in the lab was learning how to use virtual reality and getting to see how it’s being used to assist professors in an educational setting. I also enjoyed working on a new project that could further our understanding of how malate dehydrogenase 2 is regulated and what that could mean for cancer research. This experience exposed me to a field of study that I didn’t know existed in biology previously, and it solidified my interest in pursuing a career related to molecular biology.”

Mikayla Cavanaugh, Class of 2024 Biology Major

Beyond the Classroom

Students working in a lab wearing protective gear

As a biology student at Suffolk, you won’t have to wait in line to use the latest equipment or consult with professors. Our sole focus on undergraduate education means you’ll do meaningful research in the lab as soon as possible, working directly with faculty mentors.

In your courses, and through work with faculty in their labs, you’ll have opportunities to:

  • Apply CRISPR-based genome-editing techniques to studying cancer
  • Learn the foundations of cell culture, an in-demand technique rarely taught at the undergraduate level
  • Use virtual reality technology such as Nanome, a powerful molecular visualization program adapted to the undergraduate curriculum by our faculty
  • Conduct fieldwork, studying wildlife in the city, in more remote settings, or in museums
  • Present your findings at academic conferences
  • Publish original research undertaken with faculty and classmates

Our students also take advantage of our central location and many connections to Boston’s world-famous medical and research institutions to find internships with experts in healthcare, biotechnology, conservation, and more.

Massachusetts General Hospital as seen from Cambridge Street

How will you make a difference? For some, the best way to help others is by providing direct patient care. You might decide to work toward a career in a clinical specialty or behind the scenes helping a medical team make the most accurate diagnoses, or find your place in the lab contributing to discoveries that lead to advances in treatment options. The work you’ll do here as an undergraduate, from clinical research to volunteering at local hospitals, will help you refine your plan.

At Suffolk, our faculty will work closely with you—along with professionals from the University’s Center for Career Equity, Development & Success—as you prepare for your next step.

Our program provides a solid foundation and specific advising support for students who want to apply to medical school and other graduate programs in healthcare. We’ll also help you explore the range of career options in health and medicine so you can find the best match for your academic interests and overall life goals. Drawing from our strong ties to the world-renowned Boston medical community, we introduce students to a broad spectrum of specialists through class visits and events. Our students gain valuable insight into clinical practice by working with patients and their families in Boston’s hospitals and other clinics.

We also sponsor internships with the Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions where students collaborate in clinical research in a variety of healthcare specialties, including:

  • Physician Assistant (PA)
  • Nurse Practitioner (NP)
  • Genetic Counseling
  • Physical Therapy
  • Speech-Language Pathology
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Audiology
  • Healthcare Data Analytics

Students at the Winter Involvement Fair

During your time at Suffolk you’ll meet people who will support and challenge you. Classmates, faculty, alumni, and industry contacts will broaden your view of the scientific world and help you find your place within it.

Student Clubs and Organizations

Attend career and networking meetings, research presentations, and fun events through one of our active student groups, including:

Career and Alumni Networking Events

Explore different options by meeting people in the fields that interest you. We work closely with the Center for Career Equity, Development & Success to hold annual job fairs and career roundtables, and regularly invite alumni back to campus for class visits and talks.

Success after Suffolk

Here's a sampling of recent graduates’ current job titles and employers.

Medical Assistant
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Laboratory Technician
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Research Associate I
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard
Laboratory Technician
Charles River Laboratories
Research Assistant
Harvard Medical School
Research Technician
Massachusetts General Hospital
Production Technician I
New England Biolabs
Lab Technician
Clinical Research Assistant
Beth Israel Lahey Health
Research Support Associate
Massachusetts Eye and Ear
Senior Research Support Associate
MIT Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research

Continuing Education

Our alumni are earning graduate degrees at MIT, Cornell, Tufts, Georgetown, UMass Amherst, the University of Connecticut, and The Ohio State University.

Others are pursuing medical degrees at the University of Massachusetts Chan Medical School, Boston University Medical School, Rush Medical College, University of Minnesota Medical School, Ross School of Medicine, University of California at Davis School of Medicine, and The George Washington University Medical School.

Still others are entering healthcare through specialized programs at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, New England College of Optometry, New York Institute of Technology, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine, and Tufts Cummings Veterinary School.

Questions? Get in touch!

Eric Dewar

Eric Dewar

Associate Professor & Interim Department Chair of Biology

Email [email protected]

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