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Karen Fredenburg
Executive Secretary

P:  (540) 464-7247
F:  (540) 464-7761

203 Maury-Brooke Hall
Virginia Military Institute
Lexington, VA  24450

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Frequently Asked Questions

Will the biology curriculum prepare me for entry into medical and dental school?
Yes. Approximately 30% of our majors go to medical or dental school.
Do you have an early acceptance into medical program?
Yes. We have such agreements with a number of medical schools, including VCU, EVMS, and VCOM.
What about preparation for other health professions?
Our majors enter programs in pharmacy, nursing, physician assistant, physical therapy, forensics, health administration. 
Will biology prepare me for graduate school?
Many of our majors have completed their Masters or Ph.D. programs and hold government, industry and academic positions.
What can I do with a biology degree if I don’t want to go to graduate school after graduation?

Many businesses and biotechnology companies hire our majors to be research technicians.

We have a teacher certification program which will prepare you for a career in secondary education.

A third of our majors commission first before making a career decision.

How do I get scholarship help?

Many of our majors are supported through: 

  • Military scholarships
  • Athletic scholarships
  • Institute Scholar fellowships
  • Merit scholarships
  • Student aid assistance
  • Work study program support 
Can I commission in an armed forces branch and still be a biology major?
Yes, approximately 30% of our majors commission after graduation.
Do I have to take calculus as a biology major?
No. Unless you are on a Navy scholarship you can take Quantitative Methods I-II.
Can I be an athlete and study biology?
Yes. We have majors that represent most all of the NCAA sports at VMI. Many of our majors use summer coursework or research programs to lighten their academic years course loads.
How do I arrange a visit to VMI?
Contact Admissions, sign up for an open house weekend, or contact the Biology Department to arrange a special visit.  
What are your class sizes like?
The largest class you will have at VMI will be approximately 25 students in some freshman classes but the average upper level size is 12.
What’s the average course load in biology?

Our majors average 16-18 credit hours per semester.

How often do I see my academic advisor?
During your first year, you will see your advisor once or twice a week and several times a month for lunch.  We welcome you to visit as often as you like.
How many majors are in the Biology Department?
We are currently matriculating approximately 45 majors per year. During any given year we have at total of 120 majors in the department.
How easy is it to get help with your courses?

The instructor’s door is always open to students who need help. VMI’s Learning Center organizes review sessions for many of the freshman courses.

VMI has both the Writing and Math Center to assist you.

Can I minor or major in another subject and still be a biology major?
Yes, our BA degree in biology allows for extra free credits for just this purpose.