At Defiance College, the molecular biology program explores the explosion of information in modern biology, focusing on the building blocks of life and how they assemble into cells, tissues, and organisms. Special attention is given to nucleic acids and proteins and the techniques currently used in industry, research, and government labs.
Working closely with professors, students experience first-hand the cloning of genes, genetic fingerprinting, and the analysis of proteins. Student-centered learning allows majors to focus on topics that interest them and will prove valuable for their career objectives.
All molecular biology majors will earn a minor in chemistry upon completion of the molecular biology degree requirements.
200 internship hours are an integral component of the molecular biology major. The focus of the internship depends on the student’s area of interest and is available in a variety of professional settings. Whether it is shadowing a physician at a regional hospital or assisting a veterinarian in their clinic, the internship gives glimpses into possible career choices. The internship itself will provide real-world, on-site learning experience and training in the student’s selected interest. Students are encouraged to choose an assortment of internship experiences to round out their education.
Benefits of the Program
Defiance College offers science students hands-on lab experiences that feed their natural curiosity. Small-sized labs allow students to engage actively with faculty and establish strong, positive relationships. Through the McMaster School, students have the opportunity to travel to another part of the world and complete a project of their own design, thereby growing their skills in identifying issues and problem-solving while nurturing a global perspective. Molecular biology majors have completed projects in Cambodia and Belize on issues such as water quality, and providing education for illnesses, first aid, and water safety.
The science division at Defiance College offers pre-professional programs in the areas of medicine, veterinary, dentistry, optometry, and chiropractic. Upon completion of the program, students are prepared to take entrance exams and apply to graduate professional school. Pre-professional programs offer all the classes required for acceptance into professional and graduate schools. DC students have had great success getting into these programs because of the depth of their knowledge gained here. This is made possible due to small class sizes, tailored individual instruction, and undergraduate research opportunities. Course selection is individualized from a broad range of science courses and internships.
After College — What’s Next?
The molecular biology program permits the most career flexibility of the natural science majors. The program prepares students for graduate school, medical school, veterinary school, dental school, laboratory-based research, or similar professional careers.
Recent molecular biology graduates have found positions in a variety of professional schools such as:
- Medical schools
- Osteopathic schools
- Veterinary schools
- Podiatry schools
- Laboratory and research positions in the food science industry
- Laboratory and research positions in the pharmaceutical industry
In Their Own Words
"Defiance College has had an immeasurable impact on my life from sports, friends, and travel opportunities to research, all of which have, in turn, affected my career. Before going to Defiance College, I knew that I wanted to become a doctor, but I was somewhat lost on that path. My experiences at DC shaped those broad dreams into achievable goals. I found a love and passion for rural medicine with the help of the McMaster School for Advancing Humanity. The science department fed my desire for knowledge and helped me mature into an inquisitive and determined student. The one-on-one attention I received at Defiance College encouraged me to push on in an extremely competitive field and provided me the resources I needed to attain the goals I had set for myself. I will forever remember where my journey started and the educational opportunities I was so lucky to receive from Defiance College."
--Melina Alexander, 2015 graduate and medical student at Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine
"I benefited greatly from the small class sizes at DC. I was able to build strong
and lasting rapports with my professors and the staff. There were times when I felt
like giving up on my dream, and these people were there for me, offering a word or
two of encouragement which made my journey through college a little easier. They were
able to do this because they know me personally, my strengths and my weaknesses. I
knew they genuinely wanted the best for me. Let’s just add, there were crying moments
and laughing moments in their offices, as a result of their open door policies! They
provided a home away from home. I am forever grateful to have these professionals
in my life and would not trade my experience at DC for any other."
--Cheryl-Ann Francis, 2015 graduate and medical student at Ross University School of Medicine
"A combination of factors worked well for me as a molecular biology major. My passion
for the subjects and the accessibility of the professors created the prospect for
--Braden Watchmann, 2014 Graduate
"Defying the ordinary is exactly what I think of when I think about the molecular
biology program at Defiance College. The professors are extremely personable and willing
to share their experiences with students. This environment fosters not only individual
guidance but also a feeling of team comradery. The vast research options (both domestic
and international) as an individual or a team member helps students gain valuable
experience as well as stand out from their peers. The learning environment helps you
think critically and at the cellular level, not only about what’s going on but looking
at future implications and problems. The molecular biology program will help you defy
the ordinary and make you stand out from your peers, helping secure a spot wherever
you wish after Defiance College."
--Dakota Keller, 2014 Graduate
"I knew before I attended Defiance College that I wanted to be a veterinarian. My
education at Defiance College gave me a great science basis to carry on to The Ohio
State University College of Veterinary Medicine. The science professors at DC made
difficult subjects easier and were always willing to help. At Defiance College, I
first began to enjoy science labs. Besides the science background, I was able to develop
skills and reasoning that I continue to use every day. I was able to take advantage
of many unique opportunities outside of the classroom as well, especially through
volunteering. Serving others continues to be a large part of my career."
--Austin Kleman, 2010 graduate and veterinarian at Fountain City Veterinary Hospital
"In the modern interdisciplinary world of science, molecular biology touches almost all sciences ranging from physics, chemistry, and, of course, biology. Our program at Defiance College will give you the background preparation needed to succeed in a career in the sciences. This major is also the best preparation for most professional programs such as medicine, pharmacy, veterinary school, dental school, and many others."
Nathan Griggs, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Biology
Alyson Laframboise, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Biology
Somnath Dutta, Ph.D.
Professor of Chemistry