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From the smallest molecule to the diverse ecosystems of our world, the study of biology answers fundamental questions about life. Graduates take their skills to labs, medical schools, universities and research environments across the globe. WVU Tech's program values research, curiosity and a passion for service.

I'm ready to discover!


Life itself is a frontier of discovery. Biologists are at the forefront of the exploration of our very existence. From the most basic carbon atoms, forming the building blocks of life, to massive blue whales roaming our planet's oceans, biologists answer questions about all types and sizes of life in our vast ecosystem. Their work shapes the field of medicine, environmental sciences and dozens of other disciplines.

Students in biology often continue their education in masters-level and Ph.D. programs, medical schools, working in the field, or in laboratories in a variety of industries. Alumni have enjoyed successful careers in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, optometry, research, education and even cytotechnology. Our program graduates have landed careers at the National Park Service, FBI and NASA.


WVU Tech’s Biology program is committed to providing a true research-centered program to students. A majority of our courses integrate hands-on laboratory work placing students side-by-side with experienced faculty to practice real research. Real-world experience and our extensive network of alumni support give our graduates the advantage they need to compete and succeed on the job market or in graduate school.

Real-world laboratory and research experience will set you apart when you complete your program. Our programs incorporate cutting-edge fields of research including microbiology, genetics, biotechnology and social impacts of biotech. Out programs are headed by dedicated faculty with a commitment to positive student experiences.

Unique research opportunities are available for those students who want to pursue the search for answers in a broad array of projects. Our faculty pursued research in molecular genetics of bacteria, acid mine drainage mitigation at Morris Creek, the ecology of an Appalachian mountain watershed and the study of vertebrate fossils and local water quality.

You're more than just another student at WVU Tech. We keep our class sizes small to ensure you are prepared for your next steps in your biology program. With an average 13:1 student to faculty ratio, our students get as much or as little assistance, guidance and experience as they want.


Our graduates accepted positions in the field as:

  • Physicians
  • Professors
  • Medical assistants
  • Health, safety and environmental specialists
  • Animal care technicians
  • Pharmacists
  • Microbiologists
  • Lab technicians
  • Research associates

Stay in West Virginia or travel the world

The study of biology can take students anywhere their passions live. WVU Tech biology program graduates can be found in the forests and mountains of West Virginia, the vast biomes across our world, in major research facilities and in clinics that keep thousands of people healthy. No matter where you want to go, a degree from WVU Tech can get you there.

WVU Tech is where your journey to a rewarding future begins. Our graduates excel in programs like medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, optometry, osteopathy, veterinary medicine, physician assistant studies, podiatry, physical therapy and occupational therapy. Whether you dream of medical school, dental school, veterinary school, or diving deep into advanced biology studies, our program is your ultimate stepping stone.

A student wearing a hat looking thorugh a microscope

Your Biology Faculty

Deborah K Beutler, Ph.D.

Professor of Biology

Profile: Beutler, Deborah

Katharine Horton

Assistant Professor of Biology

Profile: Horton, Katharine

Aida E Jimenez-Esquilin, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Biology/Microbiology

Profile: Jimenez-Esquilin, Aida

Naresh Ramesh, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Biology

Profile: Ramesh, Naresh

Jay Raymond, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Biology

Profile: Raymond, Jay

Biotechnology is a field with virtually no limits and encompasses all techniques that use living organisms, or substances from organisms, for specific purposes. Many biological processes can be harnessed to develop biotechnologies and bio-products that can be used to improve our lives and the health of our planet. However, ideas and technology that are tested in the laboratory cannot be easily realized into action without a sound process for implementation.

West Virginia University Institute of Technology is excited to provide a much needed experiential learning environment for students to develop novel biotechnology and to cultivate entrepreneurial mind-sets to solve real-world social and environmental problems. The mission of the Biology – Teaching Entrepreneurship through Collaboration (BioTEC) Program is to sponsor student-led entrepreneurship in biology to generate innovators that will serve the growing biotechnology economy.

The objective of the BioTEC Program is to sponsor student-led entrepreneurship in biology to generate innovators that will serve the growing biotechnology economy. To achieve this objective, students will be guided through the BioTEC program pathway by participating in 1) the Translational Science course and 2) BioTEC Program Awards.

The course is an experiential learning course open to all students. In Translational Science students learn the entrepreneurial mindset needed to get science to market. In the course, students work in startup teams to generate new ideas in biotechnology. They prototype these ideas and then their ideas evolve through the customer discovery and customer validation processes. After completion of the Translational Science course select team ideas will be chosen for BioTEC Program Product Awards which can award up to $1200 of support to develop ideas.

Innovations with applications to Biology. Some examples include: clean/green technologies, veterinary and healthcare devices, sports and fitness, agriculture and food-based technologies. To be eligible, teams must have at minimum one student who has completed the Translational Science course.

  • BioTEC Product Award – $600. Intended for early-stage teams who have not previously received BioTEC funding. Available to at least two BioTEC teams each semester awarded.

  • BioTEC Venture Award - $1,200. Intended for more advanced teams who have a product and are working on commercialization.

If your project or product is an innovation that will benefit people or life on this planet and has applications of biology or biotechnology, then it’s a fit! Any WVU student in any discipline.

Two enrolled students are required to be on a team for each semester in which you are applying. Teams must have at minimum one student who has completed the Translational Science course.  If you are graduating, but plan to continue with the project, you will need to recruit additional students to your team for application of funding in later semesters.

If you are a student with an innovation, you will eventually need a team consisting of at least one other student to qualify for the BioTEC Program each semester and at least one student who has completed the Translational Science course. If you are a student looking to apply, contact the BioTEC Program for help recruiting additional students.

Yes, teams may apply if they are working on technologies invented by faculty or other students 1) if the intent of the university is to further develop the product or innovation for commercialization and 2) if the current student team members are playing meaningful roles in the process.

Yes, so as long as the recruited students are playing meaningful roles and are driving the innovation development and commercialization. Students would serve as the entrepreneurial leaders of the team, regardless of the origin of the idea or invention.

Apply to the BioTec program

There are two application cycles each year – deadlines in August/September and January. Teams can complete the application at any time before the deadline. All teams will be notified via email their status within two weeks of the deadline date. If you are accepted into the program for the semester, your notification email will include program details and a schedule.