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Experiences & Opportunities

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Matthew Jones-Rhoades

Chair & Associate Professor of Biology

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401



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Ford Center for the Fine Arts

Whether you want to conduct independent research on campus, at Green Oaks a few miles down the road, or at a research facility halfway around the world, there are ample opportunities to enhance your studies in biology through internships, independent research, and off-campus study. These programs are integral to a Knox education, teaching you how to apply your skills in real world situations.

Student Research Opportunities

  • "An experimental investigation of the search image phenomenon in foraging starlings,"Sara Fink, independent study/senior research funded by Richter program.
  • "Interactions between host and commensal bacteria," Jason Casicio, McNair research.
  • "Development of biotinylated rubisco activase probe," Kelly Van Winkle, independent study/senior research funded by Richter program.
  • "Isolation of antibodies that bind to the protein moesin," Erin Jesuit, Ford Fellowship independent/senior research.

Examples of recent presentations include:

  • "Gd-DTPA enhanced in vivo imaging of Xenopus laevis development using an Ultra-compact MRI," Illinois State Academy of Science Annual Meeting. Kelli Huebner '13.
  • "Early Introvert regeneration in Themiste lageniformis: A light and transmission electron microscopy study," Illinois State Academy of Science Annual Meeting. Joshua Brownell '13.


Outstanding students may elect to undertake College Honors in their senior year, carrying out an advanced research project presented and defended to a faculty committee that includes a distinguished outside examiner. Examples of recent Honors projects include:

  • "The Effects of a Traffic Light Label Intervention on College Students' Dietary Choices in All-You-Can-Eat Cafeteria," Emily Tubbs Rosen '17.
  • "Ecology and morphology of the subterranean flowers of Amphicarpaea bracteata (Fabaceae: Phaseoleae)," Dana Olivia Robinson '13.
  • "Understanding the stable expression of intersectin1 isoforms during the embryonic development of Xenopus laevis," Oscar Antonio Jimenez '13.
  • “Innate predator recognition and cultural transmission of predator recognition in the Zebra Finch,” Kelly Wiggen ‘11
  • “Identification and characterization of small non-coding RNAs in Dictyostelium discoideum,” Ya-Lyn Lu ‘11

Off-campus Study

Our students take advantage of the more than two dozen off-campus study programs. Knox offers several off-campus programs of particular interest to biology students:

  • ACM Costa Rica: Field Research in the Environment, Social Sciences, & Humanities, provides highly distinct and valuable settings for intensive biological study.
  • ACM Tanzania
  • Knox's interdisciplinary Green Oaks Term brings students and faculty from a variety of disciplines together for a 10-week interdisciplinary residential experience.

Biology students have also recently embarked on off-campus study programs in:

  • Argonne Science Semester
  • Oak Ridge Science Semester
  • Denmark
  • Australia
  • Scotland
  • New Zealand


There's no better way to explore the possibilities of life after Knox than internships. Here are a few of our students' recent internships (found with the assistance  from the Bastian Family Career Center):

  • Intern, Cottage Hospital, Robin Wright ‘13, biology major.
  • Intern, Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, Illinois. Rachel Zak '13, biology major.
  • Environmental Quality Internship, Brookfield Zoo, Chicago, Illinois. Dan Pers '11, biology major.
  • Physical Therapy Intern, Azer Clinic, Galesburg, Illinois. Antonina Pondo '11, biology and modern languages-Spanish major.
  • Emergency Room Intern, OSF St. Mary’s Hospital, Arnold Salgado’ 13, biology major.

Pre-Med students shadow local and doctors and health practitioners in Galesburg or in their home towns. Examples of recent pre-med internships include:

  • Hospital Administration Intern, OSF St. Mary's Hospital, Galesburg. Abby Owens '12.
  • Summer Intern, Medcore Home Health, Inc. Sara Ahmed '12.

Additional Student Opportunities

Each year in the spring, the department recognizes students with departmental awards for outstanding work including the Alvah Peterson Award: awarded to junior or senior Biology majors for outstanding performance in Biology courses or research; the David "Burney" Dunn Award for Students' Field Research: provides resources needed by students who are conducting field work in biology, ecology, and environmental science; Inn-Siang Ooi Prize: given to a Knox student who has demonstrated skill in field biology, a commitment to conservation, and a concern about human coexistence with other species; and the P.J. Deoras Student Research Fund: provides annual research awards to support outstanding junior or senior students interested in environmental studies.

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Printed on Wednesday, June 12, 2024