Eric Adjei-Danquah '17 in the lab

Department of Biology

The Department of Biology at Saint Joseph's University prepares students for a bright future. Our students experience a hands-on, experimental approach in all of their courses and are ready to pursue a wide range of careers — from medical and health professions to science education.

The Department of Biology aims to educate broadly trained biologists who are also well-grounded in chemistry and mathematics and have command of the written and spoken word. Our emphasis is placed on the understanding of principles and concepts in biology, and the application of those principles through analysis of data and synthesis of information learned in the classroom.

We provide appropriate training for students seeking admission to professional and graduate schools, as well as those who wish to enter the job market directly following graduation. We also have a small but strong graduate program for those who wish to engage in research as part of their career or to continue their graduate training at the doctoral level.


Of graduates have gone to medical school.


Of graduates have gone to graduate school.


Of graduates are working in biology-related careers.


Of gradautes are working in allied health areas and K–12 education.

Explore Our Department

biodiversity lab, a room full of tanks

The Science Center allows students to put their classroom work into action and engage in research projects with our faculty.

professor and student doing lab work at saint joseph's university

Information for Incoming Students

The Department of Biology has numerous programs and resources for incoming first-year biology majors. These academic opportunities play a big role in helping students adjust to college-level courses, learn new skills and meet and network with other students and alumni in science-related fields.

We encourage you to check out our student resources page to learn more about the guidance and support available to you during your time as a biology student at Saint Joseph's. We also invite you to explore our Biology Experience Aimed at Growth, Learning and Excellence (B.E.A.G.L.E.) program and the Phage Safari lab

News & announcements

Scott McRobert, Ph.D., is Saving Turtles and Their Reputations, Too: Scott McRobert, Ph.D., professor of biology at Saint Joseph’s, is leading new research on the nesting habits of turtles with particular focus on the red-eared slider, an invasive species allegedly threatening the lives of native animals.

Giving Pre-Med Students a Cutting EdgeLaunched in 2019, the Pathways to Medical Professions program gives biology students a competitive edge in the rigorous medical school application process by providing opportunities to explore different fields of medicine, connect with mentors from Saint Joseph’s medical alumni chapter and write reflection papers on their experiences to help them discern their career path.


Cracking the Code on Corn Smut: For the last decade, Karen Snetselaar Ph.D., professor emerita of biology at Saint Joseph's, and a team of researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology have been studying maize plants infected by the biotrophic pathogen Ustilago maydis, or corn smut. This biotrophic pathogen that infects corn could have implications for understanding and preventing other plant and human diseases, a new study finds.

Student Examines Cognitive Consequences of Long COVID-19: Saint Joseph’s University Summer Scholar Harshal Mehta ’22, a biology major minoring in health care ethics, has set out to investigate the cognitive consequences of COVID-19 in an effort to identify trends among those affected by long-term side effects and better understand their neurological implications.

Graduate Finds Passion for Farming and FermentationJulianne Hunt ’21 decided to pursue her lifelong passion for farming and biology, while also double majoring in classical studies. Following her graduation this month, she’ll put her education to the test helping a Pennsylvania-area farm open a new cidery.

Science Goes Virtual: Moving Outreach Opportunities Online Amid the PandemicSaint Joseph’s science outreach programs have continued throughout the pandemic with the help of programs like Zoom and Google Classroom.

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Alumni Spotlight

Jacob Feiertag

The solid foundation in the natural sciences, as well as the underlying Jesuit principles, taught through my humanities courses, guided me toward my love for the medical field."


Jacob Feiertag '20

M.D. Student, Penn State College of Medicine

Ave Burleigh '20

College-level science is a big change from high school. I participated in the BEAGLE program as a freshman, and, as a result, developed the skills needed to succeed in the department."

Ave Burleigh '20

Ave Burleigh '20

biology major, behavioral neuroscience minor

Marisa Egan

Quickly, the lab became my favorite classroom on campus. As a microbiology student researcher, I had several teachers in the lab — including students — who welcomed my curiosity."


Marisa Egan '18

Doctoral Candidate, University of Pennsylvania

Got Questions?