The biology program is designed to immerse you in the theories and concepts that drive life: from the molecular forces that govern animal growth and development, to the intricate ways our environment influences animal health and development. Our program begins with a two-semester introductory sequence that seeks to build a solid foundation of knowledge in cell and molecular biology and biochemistry. Afterwards, these concepts are used to develop a better understanding of how cells work together to build tissues, and ultimately organ systems, to drive animal physiology. 

After completing the introductory sequence, you can choose from a wide latitude of junior- and senior-level coursework to address your own specific interests in biology. Our program offers expansive instruction in nutrition, food safety, metabolism, cell and molecular biology, biochemistry, and animal development. Our faculty are trained in a broad variety of disciplines, which means that we can help you build a biology degree that is tailored specifically for you.


All of our faculty members possess doctoral degrees in incredibly diverse fields.

Course content is tailored to address our students' specific interests.

What You'll Study

What you study is largely up to you! After your introductory sequence and required coursework for your sophomore year (chemistry, anatomy and physiology, and microbiology), you can choose from many different courses taught by experts in their field, including human and animal nutrition, histology, biochemistry, developmental biology, ecology, mammology, and cell biology.

Biomedical Sciences Specialization

The biomedical sciences specialization is geared towards students who are interested in human-base medicine, and interested in medical school, dental school, pharmacy school, programs in physical therapy or occupational therapy, and other professional degrees. It will also prepare you for graduate work in research biology. You will complete courses necessary to apply to these prestigious programs: introduction to biology, anatomy and physiology, chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, and calculus.  

Beyond the Classroom

The faculty in our program place a great deal of emphasis on learning beyond lecture. Our laboratories are meticulously planned to further extend our students’ knowledge of the topics we cover during class. From protein expression to cholesterol quantification and sea urchin development, students gain a valuable and marketable skillset in our program.

We also strongly encourage students in our program to seek internships at colleges and laboratories around the country. We have been fortunate to place students in incredibly selective summer research programs, including internships at Ivy League schools such as Dartmouth College. We feel that participation in these programs can give our students an edge when applying for highly competitive placement in graduate and professional programs.

After Graduation

Common Career Areas

Career information is provided through Vault and O'Net. Current Lees-McRae students can see the full results on Vault using their student email and password. 

Alumni Success

  • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Student North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Student University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Student Lincoln Memorial University College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Physical Therapy Graduate Student Duke University School of Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering Graduate Student Virginia Tech/Wake Forest University School of Biomedical Engineering 
  • Exercise Physiology Graduate Student Wake Forrest University
  • Nutrition Graduate Student Western North Carolina University
  • Cardiology Research Fellow Penn State Hershey Medical Center
  • Assistant Brewer Oskar Blues Brewery

Meet the Faculty

Kelly Collins, PhD
Assistant Professor of Biology

Clifton Hackbarth, PhD
Assistant Professor of Chemistry

Dee Medford-Baker, DC
Assistant Professor of Biology

Claude Pyatte, DVM
Associate Professor of Biology

Susan Gardner
Assistant Professor of Biology

Ready to take the next step?

We're glad to hear that! Our admissions office is ready to guide you through the process.