Department of Biological Sciences

Graduate Programs

Biology Graduate Student Association (BGSA)


The mission of the BGSA is to serve as a focus group to assist all the graduate students in the Department of Biological Sciences, and serve as an important communication link between the graduate students, the faculty and the department chair. In addition, the BGSA assembly graduate student symposium and works with the department chair on department activities.

 Why Join BGSA? 

BGSA as a student organization, it provides experiences in how to organize professional events and learn how to mediate communication between professors and students. The BGSA is an ever-evolving group that welcomes fresh thoughts and ideas for new initiatives to help the graduate students in the Department of Biological Sciences. The BGSA acknowledges that the transition to graduate school can be challenging and we are there to help!  BGSA members are there to provide both academic and moral support to all graduate students.

Academic support includes, but is not limited to, teaching new lab techniques, hosting study sessions for graduate coursework and clarifying graduate requirements/deadlines. Lastly, the president of the BGSA will receive department assistance award for the elected term. 

What are the duties of a BGSA member? 

The BGSA host several major activities during the academic year including the welcome picnic, the annual holiday party, Biology Graduate student Research Symposium (BGRS) and the end of semester barbecue. 

  • Attend the BGSA general assembly set up by the president of the BGSA 
  • Help officers to set-up departmental picnics or parties (that may include shopping, cooking, clean-up or even entertainment) 
  • Sign up to provide snacks (the department pays!) and assist in the AV arrangements for the weekly departmental colloquium series; generally everyone does this once/academic year 

Note: Since all Biosciences grad students contribute their time for these activities, general members have to contribute few hours each semester.

BGSA Handbook (pdf)

Last Updated: 5/27/20