Biology Program Description
Major in Biology

Biology @ UC

View our Mission Statement!

The biology curriculum at Utica College has been designed to provide a thorough education in the classic principles and techniques of the biological sciences and, at the same time, provide opportunities to relate and apply them to contemporary issues and problems. Students are offered relevant and exciting challenges and choices in their pursuit of successful and rewarding careers.

More about biology...

Special Opportunities

The goals of the biology department are achieved through a variety of means, including lectures, discussions, laboratories, field studies, seminars, and guest speakers. Students may engage in research both within the course structure and independently under the guidance of a faculty member. An informal and candid rapport between students and faculty is actively encouraged, and each student's individual goals are acknowledged and fostered.

Opportunities to explore both laboratory and field biology are abundant. Course work spans the vast array of disciplines in modern biology, from molecular and cellular biology to organismal biology and ecology. Students have performed field studies in tropical rain forests in Trinidad and Tobago and in the Adirondacks, and have employed state-of-the-art recombinant DNA techniques in gene cloning and mapping experiments. Students have published and presented papers on their research at state and national meetings.

Biology majors also are invited to become members of the Asa Gray Biological Society. The student and faculty organization, named in honor of the renowned botanist who was born and educated in the Utica area, is designed to expand and enrich the educational experience. The organization sponsors trips, special events, and the Asa Gray Biological Society Seminar Series, which brings distinguished scientists to campus each year to discuss their latest research.


The biology faculty is noted for the quality of its teaching and for the extent of its scholarship. Research conducted by faculty members, which frequently includes students earning research credit, has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the National Geographic Society.

Meet the biology faculty!


The biology department occupies eight laboratories dedicated to instruction in anatomy and physi-ology, microbiology, genetics and developmental biology, cell and molecular biology, vertebrate biology and entomology, and botany. Lake Julia Preserve, a wildlife sanctuary owned by The Nature Conservancy and located close to the College, is utilized for field studies. It includes a climax forest, a pine plantation, a remote bog, and a wooded swamp.

Career Opportunities

The Utica College biology degree prepares students for diverse career opportunities and makes them highly competitive for a broad range of graduate and professional programs. Among these opportunities are:

- Medical: dentistry, medicine, optometry, pharmacy, podiatry, public health, or veterinary medicine.

- Teaching and Research: college, secondary schools, drug counseling, lab technology, or research technology.

- Environmental: forestry, fish or game management, park management, range management, or pollution measurement and control.

- Business and Industry: landscape architecture, mortuary science, pharmaceutical sales, technical writing, or research industry.

Many UC biology students have been accepted for professional studies in medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, podiatry, optometry, and chiropractic. For detailed information on UC's special opportunities in the health professions, contact the Office of Admissions.

UC Graduates

Michael Jones '95 was a nontraditional student in every sense. After years of running the family dairy farm, this father of two young children returned to college to pursue his lifelong interest in veterinary medicine. He performed chores on the farm every morning and evening, but in between, he managed to attain a near straight-A average. Mike was accepted by all eight of the veterinary schools to which he applied and became one of the most heavily recruited pre-veterinary students in the country. He elected to pursue his veterinary studies at Cornell University.

"Without any doubt in my mind, one of the only reasons that I was able to complete my education and successfully enter my current position as a Ph.D. candidate in genetics was due to the constant support and guidance that I received at UC. There are those who believe that graduation from a larger or more prestigious university is the only chance for future academic or employment pursuits. I would have to disagree since my knowledge, experiences, and recommendations from professors who truly knew me and my strengths gained me entrance into numerous graduate programs to which I applied."
--Susan A. Zullo '92, The National Center for Human Genome Research, The National Institutes of Health; Doctoral Candidate, George Washington University

"I knew I wanted to go into the health field, but I didn't know in what specific area. Two professors at UC helped make me aware of the optometry field. Now I'm ecstatic with my career choice."
--Desmond Parkin '84, Optometrist, Parkin & Sin Optometry, PC, New York, NY


Dr. Daniel Kurtz
Chair of Biology

(315) 792-3923
(315) 792-3006
1600 Burrstone Road | Utica, NY 13502