Organizations & Opportunities

Organizations & Opportunities

Pre-Professional Programs


The minimum requirement for admission to most schools of medicine is ninety (90) semester hours of academic courses, although completion of the curriculum leading to a baccalaureate degree is encouraged. Courses in general and organic chemistry, biology, physics, and English are required but concentration in the sciences is not essential. Medicine is concerned with a variety of social and community problems and a broad cultural background is considered desirable. Pre-medical studies for each student should be planned in keeping with individual interests. Development of an efficient method of study and habit of reasoning is more important than the selection of subjects. Requirements may be met with the programs leading to baccalaureate degrees in natural sciences, social sciences, or humanities. Students interested in becoming physicians, veterinarians, or dentists should contact Dr. Tucker as early as possible for specific advice on preparatory programs, required courses and examinations, and application procedures for professional schools.


All courses needed to complete the pre-pharmacy requirements for pharmacy school are readily available at The University of Virginia’s College at Wise. Pre-pharmacy requirements vary from one pharmacy school to another and it is not possible to list a single set of courses that will satisfy the pre-pharmacy requirements for all programs. Students should consult the requirements for all pharmacy programs of interest and plan a course of study appropriate for the schools chosen. Most programs will require a minimum of three years of study to complete the pre-pharmacy requirements. Students are advised that admission to pharmacy school is a competitive process. Listed below is a core curriculum that is required by many schools. Many pharmacy schools require courses in addition to the core.

  • BIO 1010 / 1011 – Principles of Biology and Lab (4)
  • BIO 1020 / 1021 – Introduction to Biological Diversity and Lab (4)
  • CHM 1010 / 1011 – College Chemistry I and Lab (4)
  • CHM 1020 / 1021 – College Chemistry II and Lab (4)
  • CHM 3010 / 3011 – Organic Chemistry I and Lab (5)
  • CHM 3020 / 3021 – Organic Chemistry II and Lab (5)
  • COM 1000 Public Speaking (3)
  • ECO 2050 Microeconomic Principles (3)
  • ENG 1010 – 1020  Composition (6)
  • MTH 1180 Elementary Probability and Statistics (3)
  • MTH 2040 Calculus I (4)
  • PHY 1010 / 1011 – Introduction to Physics I and Lab (5)
  • PHY 1020 / 1021 – Introduction to Physics II and Lab (5)
  • Electives (social science and humanities) (12)

Total, Pre-Pharmacy: 67 hours


Most physical therapy programs are post-graduate and require a bachelor’s degree for admission. No specific undergraduate major is required. Listed below are courses needed for admission to many programs. Students should contact the American Physical Therapy Association for schools with accredited physical therapy programs and a list of specific courses required for admission to those programs. Students should consult Dr. Woodard about the schools to which they plan to apply for specific requirements, and be advised that admission to physical therapy programs is highly competitive.

  • BIO 1010 / 1011 – Principles of Biology and Lab (4)
  • BIO 1020 / 1021 – Introduction to Biological Diversity and Lab (4)
  • BIO 2310 Introduction to Anatomy & Physiology I (4) and
  • BIO 2320 Introduction to Anatomy & Physiology II (4) OR
  • BIO 3120 Animal Physiology (4) and
  • BIO 3230 Comparative Anatomy (4)
  • CHM 1010 / 1011 – College Chemistry I and Lab (4)
  • CHM 1020 / 1021 – College Chemistry II and Lab (4)
  • ENG 1010 – 1020  Composition (6)
  • MTH 1110/1210 Pre-calculus I/II (6) OR
  • MTH 2040 Calculus I (4)
  • MTH 1180 Elementary Probability and Statistics (3)
  • PHY 1010 / 1011 – Introduction to Physics I and Lab (5)
  • PHY 1020 / 1021 – Introduction to Physics II and Lab (5)
  • PSY 1100 Introduction to Psychology (3)
  • Humanities Electives (6)
  • Psychology Elective (3)
  • Social Science Electives (6)
  • General Electives† (29-30)

† Students are encouraged to select general electives from the following categories:  computer science, kinesiology, exercise physiology, foreign languages, and courses in physical education that deal with an analytical approach to human movement or motor learning.

Total, Pre-Physical Therapy: 94 – 97 hours

Research Opportunities

Our faculty are engaged in research that depends upon the participation of students and we actively encourage students at all academic levels to become involved. Studies during the past decade show that students with undergraduate research experience are more likely to be accepted by and do well in graduate and professional schools across the nation. The opportunities for such research experience are much greater at UVa-Wise because of our faculty to student ratio. We believe it is one of our greatest assets.

We have members of the department working on slime molds, tropical plant extracts, transcription factors, reptiles and amphibians, molluscs, environmental geochemistry of mining, and more. We use both traditional and modern techniques to answer questions and have state-of-the-art equipment at our disposal. Please contact us as early as possible in your UVa-Wise career so that you may choose a project that works on questions of interest to you.

Much of our research occurs in the summers and students interested in working with us during this time can apply for a Fellowship In the Natural Sciences (FINS). The FINS program is both highly competitive and rewarding, allowing students to work with individual faculty throughout the summer. View information about the program and an application.

Internships Opportunities

Experience in your field of study is a very important part of your undergraduate training in the sciences. Most students realize that getting into a graduate or professional program requires experience and most jobs require it. But experience is often confusing and elusive (i.e., how can you obtain experience when you need experience to get your first position?). Internships are the answer. An internship is a formal, preprofessional fieldwork experience in an area in which you have gained some theoretical competence, usually through coursework in your academic major or concentration.

Internships are available throughout the world in almost any field imaginable. You can find internship opportunities just by intelligently surfing the web and we encourage you to do this early and often. Many students at UVa-Wise find very rewarding internships on their own through such measures. This page is designed simply to let you know that internships are an important part of your undergraduate experience – you should use them to find out what you do not like as well as what you do. The following is a list meant to get you started in your search by showing you a few possibilities and letting you see what some of our students have found in the past.

Brief List of Internship Opportunities in the Sciences

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program

Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Bermuda Biological Station for Research

The Student Conservation Association

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute

National Museum of Natural History

Environmental Careers Organization

United States Forest Service

Research Honors in Biology

The Biology Program at The University of Virginia’s College at Wise is pleased to award graduation with honors to students who distinguish themselves in research. To earn honors, students must submit a contract for research in biology and fulfill all requirements of the contract to the satisfaction of the Biology Program at The University of Virginia’s College at Wise.

Although research topics are limited solely by your imagination, we do have individual research interests. If any of the following areas of interest sound exciting, feel free to contact that person to discuss ideas. Alternatively, if you have your own ideas for a research project, please contact us to discuss possible experimental designs.

Robin L. Woodard
Associate Professor of Biology

Signal transduction and the regulation of transcription in eukaryotic cells


Undergraduate Research Experiences at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise

The University of Virginia’s College at Wise Fellowship in the Natural Sciences (FINS) provides research opportunities to students during their college careers. Students gain practical experience in modern scientific research techniques by pursuing answers to contemporary questions under the direction of a member of the natural sciences faculty. Faculty sponsors serve as mentors, role models, and advisors. Individual projects support the goals of a research program that is of high scientific merit yet are appropriate for undergraduate research. Successful applicants are encouraged to submit a proposal for graduation “With Research Honors” in the respective field of study.

FINS Research Fellows will:

  • receive a $3,000 student stipend for the ten (10) week period;
  • spend approximately forty (40) hours per week on their research or diabetes projects during the period of their fellowship;
  • present the findings of their research during a FINS Symposium

Successful student applicants will:

  • have completed at least one year of undergraduate science coursework;
  • be students in good standing at The University of Virginia’s College at Wise;
  • be highly motivated to participate in ongoing research projects and demonstrate the potential for success in scientific research and related experiences; and
  • have demonstrated a high degree of academic achievement.

To apply, submit the following materials to the Science Center Office

  • completed FINS application form (available in Science Center office or click for the Application Form)
  • statement describing your academic background, scientific interests, suitability for field or laboratory experiences, and past research experiences
  • statement explaining how the chosen fellowship experience will help you pursue your career goals
  • one official copy of your academic transcript
  • two letters of recommendation from professors who can assess your scientific and intellectual abilities, previous training and experience, and potential for a career in research (at least one must be from a non-sponsoring professor)
  • a research proposal (maximum five pages for project description)

Send application materials to:

FINS Program
Department of Natural Sciences
University of Virginia’s College at Wise
Wise, VA 24293