Which Marine Biology program is right for me?

If you’re thinking about which marine biology program is right for you…here’s some helpful information.

For this post, I’ve decided to answer some of the questions that are commonly asked when I participate in the phone-a-thon each semester to talk to alumni about university news and my major. 

1. Marine Biology Program – What is the department like at Florida Tech?
The biology department at Florida Tech is one of the best group of scientists and teachers I’ve ever encountered. The professors sincerely care about your success at the university and will actively work with you to make sure your grades are high, your recommendation letters are in on time for internships/applications and that you’re involved in as much research as you want to be involved in.

2. Marine Biology Program – How big are the classes?
The classes are very reasonable. My largest class was my introductory biology class, which was maybe 30 people or so. The professors still learn all the students’ names and are available for help. Lab sections are generally 10-15 people and some classes are as small as 8 people.

3. Marine Biology Program – Will I be able to play with dolphins and swim with manatees?
No. That’s not even legal. As a marine biology major, you’ll learn about more of your options in the field, rather than your childhood dream of Free Willy and that dolphin with a mechanical tail. Many of the freshmen coming in wanting to study marine mammals will fall in love with other ecosystems and organisms. Come in with an open mind and you’ll have the best experience.

4. Marine Biology Program – How are the math and physics classes?
The math classes and physics classes aren’t fun but no one claimed they would be. I have found that Dr. Girton is my favorite calculus professor, and probably one of the only reasons I did well. The best physics professor (if you’re not good with physics) is Dr. Sawyer, but you will not have a choice in which physics teacher that you have.

5. Marine Biology Program – How difficult is it to get involved in my major?
It’s as difficult as you make it. I got involved in research by approaching a professor and getting an assignment. If you want to do research, either talk to a professor or talk to an upperclassman and they will help you. There are also clubs and organizations like the Marine Biological Society and the Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society.

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