Jubilee Brenneman

Jubilee BrennemanI’ve always had a “science-y” brain, but I didn’t know I wanted to study biology until halfway through my career at SPU. Originally, I was drawn to the Music Therapy program, but realized it was not for me. I spent my sophomore year taking general education classes and trying out other majors by taking classes and talking to professors. 

I visited the Center for Career and Calling website many times during that year, and it was a career counselor who helped me make my final decision to major in Ecology. She told me that I lit up when talking about the program and seemed more enthusiastic about it than anything else. I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to explore all my options.

The highlight of my experience in the Biology Department has been my time researching with Dr. Eric Long at Blakely Island last summer. I walked many transects through the woods with a GPS, laser rangefinder, and compass, collecting data on the number of deer inhabiting the island. In addition, I helped capture and ear-tag many deer, learning how to set up clover traps, safely tackle the animals, inject them with the proper dosages of drugs, draw blood, weigh them, take body measurements, and collect other data.

I was able to take two courses on the island: Forest Ecology with Dr. Long and Environmental Physiology with Dr. Ryan Ferrer. The classes and research experiences were extremely valuable, providing hands-on experience you can find only at a field station like Blakely. I now have an advantage not only in applying for jobs, but in deciding what area of ecology I would like to pursue. You won’t know whether you like something unless you try it! 

My experience in the Biology Department has been excellent. Even though I joined the major late, I felt welcomed by the faculty right away — especially by my adviser, Dr. Long. He encouraged me to join the major even though I was concerned about finishing everything on time, especially because I am a University Scholar. He has been flexible and accommodating, allowing me to combine my research project with my honors project. I am grateful to him for having confidence in me from the beginning. 

Another reason I appreciate Dr. Long is his enthusiasm for teaching. Learning is always better when it comes from people who love what they do. And yes, it is possible to have your dream job. Just ask Dr. Long.

Being a Biology major isn’t easy, especially while participating in the Honors Program, too. I’ve worked extremely hard, but my experiences have been equally rewarding, and, without a doubt, worth it.


Amber Givens

"I have loved having Christian professors who are willing to give advice about school, life, and faith. It is wonderful to have strong Godly mentors who are also fantastic scientists and all-around passionate and loving people."


Martin Martinez

"I chose to study Applied Human Biology because people in my family were misinformed and afraid of doctors and the health care field in general. I want to help them understand that navigating the health care field is not a chore, but can be rewarding."