Learn About Careers in Biology

Our Mission

The mission of the Biology and Environmental Health Department is to provide:

  • A stimulating and challenging Biology curriculum
  • Excellence in teaching
  • Quality academic advising
  • Outstanding general education courses
  • Dedicated community and university service, as well as international opportunities for students

Our Department

Our 18 faculty members are dedicated, personable and teach a rigorous program that translates to student success:

  • We are dedicated to providing our students the best educational experience possible.
  • We are experts in a wide range of fields, including cancer biology, paleontology, veterinary medicine, genetics and biotechnology, embryology, and conservation and field biology.
  • Additionally, we offer an on campus and online Environmental Health degree, fully accredited by the National Environmental Health Science & Protection Accreditation Council.
  • Our average class size is 22 students – we know you by name in the classroom, in the hallways, and around campus.
  • We ensure that the professor who teaches the lecture portion of a class will also teach the laboratory, to maximize professor-student interactions
  • We offer an excellent internship program that places our students in the career field interest and provides them with hands on experience.
  • Our students have numerous opportunities to participate in undergraduate research and field experiences during their course of study, across the U.S. and at multiple international locations!!

Within the department is the Environmental Health Program. This program of study is for a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Health, a field that is dedicated to protecting the human environment. Those working in the environmental health profession keep our environment healthy and safe from chemical, biological, physical and radiological hazards. Our Environmental Health Program is one of only 31 nationally accredited programs and we offer the ONLY accredited EH Program online.

With over 440 students majoring in biology, the Department of Biology and Environmental Health is the largest in the School of Arts & Sciences. The Biology degree from Missouri Southern offers students diverse career options. Our majors will enter fields such as biotechnology and bioinformatics, ecology and conservation biology, basic research, biology education, as well as health related careers in medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, and physical therapy.

Biology is the study of life. There is no better way of gaining knowledge about life then to experience it firsthand. At Missouri Southern, we offer our students unparalleled opportunities to travel, work, or to study in locations throughout the U.S. and the world. In support of the international mission of Missouri Southern, the Biology Department provides a range of opportunities for students to explore biology from a global perspective. Please take a moment to see what we can offer you and the places you can go with us! Join the Pride!!

Biology degree options

Missouri Southern offers several biology related degree options:

Biology prepares you for many careers

Biology, the study of life, is a field that offers a wide variety of career options, including health related professions. A bachelor degree in biology from Missouri Southern State University can prepare you to work in fields such as:

  • Biotechnology

  • Basic Research

  • Forensics

  • Dentistry

  • Medicine/Physician's Assistant

  • Physical Therapy

  • Veterinary Medicine

  • Government Agency

  • Ecology

  • Conservation

  • Elementary/Secondary Education


Study abroad and internship opportunities

The Biology Department provides study abroad and internship opportunities for students to explore biology from a global perspective. Additionally, internships are encouraged for biology majors as they allow you to gain practical experience in a work or research setting. While completing an internship, students receive credit that is applied toward their degree requirements, so you receive hands-on experience and get credit hours at the same time! Since 2009, approximately 132 internships have been completed by students from the Biology Program for over 375 hours of credit.

National locations for undergraduate research and/or internships:

  • University of Nebraska Medical Center – Epply Cancer Research Institute
  • University of Georgia
  • University of Arkansas
  • University of Texas, Health Sciences Center
  • US Forest Service, Cloudcroft, NM

International locations for undergraduate research and/or internships:

  • Winchecome, Gloucestershire, England
  • Winnepeg University of Manitoba School of Dentistry, Manitoba, Canada
  • National University of Ireland Galway Co., Gallway, Ireland
  • Pasteur Institute, Lille, France
  • Asociación Pop-Wuj, Guatemala
  • Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children, Peru

You may also be interested in: Biochemistry, Chemistry, Environmental Health, Pre-Medicine, Process Improvement

School of Arts and Sciences

Biology &  Environmental Health Department 

Dr. Jennifer Dennis
Department Head, Biology & Environmental Health
Asst. Prof of Biology
Reynolds Hall 215
3950 E. Newman Rd.
Joplin MO 64801-1595
Phone: 417.625.3569