Student Opportunities

Biology & Biochemistry

The biology program is reinforced with out-of-class experiences such as research projects, partnerships, the biology symposium, and Tri-Beta Biological Honor Society.



We offer the opportunity to work alongside faculty to perform cutting-edge research relevant to the world of science in the fields of biology, immunology, environmental science, animal behavior, genetics, and development. We also offer off-campus research internships that allow you to participate in semester-long opportunities with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the Minnesota Zoo, the University of Minnesota, 3M Corporation, and numerous biomedical research companies in the Twin Cities area.

Presentations and Symposia

Our biology program offers several different opportunities for students to present their research. The Biology Symposium at Northwestern is open to all research students and is held on campus. Students and their faculty mentors are also encouraged to present at the annual Faculty Symposium each May on the UNW campus.

UNW biology students also have the opportunity to present at local conferences such as the Winchell Undergraduate Research Symposium though the Minnesota Academy of Science and the Impact Research Competition at the Mayo Clinic.

Tri-Beta Biological Honor Society

This prestigious National Biology Honors Society provides educational and service opportunities to biology students. Membership is based on sophomore class standing and GPA. Members plan and participate in society sponsored activities such as guest speakers, career roundtable discussions, field trips, presentation of research, community service, and social gatherings.

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Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies

Northwestern is one of more than 50 colleges and universities participating in the Au Sable Institute academic program, which allows students to take transferable courses, engage in scholarship, gain field experience, and develop tools for environmental stewardship. The program provides programs that take seriously both science and theology. Learn more about the opportunities at Au Sable Institute.

Biology Au Sable
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Department Employment Opportunities

  • Laboratory Assistant – You will have the opportunity to earn an income while you assist professors in preparing for and teaching general, research, and chemistry labs. You may also be involved in providing care for the mammals, reptiles, and aquatic animals used in research projects and teaching.
  • Teacher’s Assistant – As a teacher’s assistant (TA), you will have the opportunity to earn an income while assisting professors with their daily teaching-associated activities.
  • Tutor – As a tutor, you will gain valuable experience as you use your science skills to help freshmen and sophomores achieve a higher level in their coursework.

Off-campus research internships

Participate in semester-long or summer opportunities with numerous Twin Cities businesses and biomedical research companies such as the 3M Corporation and Minnesota Zoo.

International study

Research marine biology in Japan on a research exchange program at the University of Tokyo or study marine animals in the Caribbean Sea. Other students have studied ecology in the Galapagos Island, tropical agriculture in Costa Rica and worked in hospitals and clinics in Quito, Ecuador.