Application Deadlines: Dec 15 (Fall) | June 15 (Spring)
The diverse research expertise of our faculty has the common theme of understanding the structures and roles of macromolecules in complex biological systems. Students have an opportunity for multidisciplinary interactions with graduate students and faculty members in related departments, including the departments of agriculture, nutrition, veterinary sciences, biochemistry, biology, physiology and anatomy, microbiology and immunology, and pharmacology and cell biology. The academic environment is lively and highly interactive, as represented by a diverse, interdisciplinary seminar program sponsored in conjunction with other related departments.
The program of study includes lecture courses, laboratory rotations, journal club presentations and discussion groups, a qualifying written and oral examination, thesis research, and one or more semesters of teaching experience. First-year students take a core curriculum and gain research experience by rotating through student-selected research laboratories. Laboratory rotations facilitate the choice of a thesis advisor.
Master's research projects are selected by the student in consultation with a major thesis advisor and an advisory committee. The requirements for the master's degree are generally completed in two years or less. The program, which is designed to prepare students for careers in research and/or teaching, emphasizes a cooperative, personal working environment among students and members of the faculty.
Career prospects are bright for someone trained in the molecular life sciences. Projections for the next 20 years indicate that there will be thousands of unfulfilled science and engineering jobs. A large fraction of that shortage will be in the field of biochemistry and molecular biology. Areas of career choices include: