PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University offers one of the nation’s most unique undergraduate majors, the Undergraduate Neuroscience Program, now beginning its second year of enrollment.
Three students are currently certified as majors in the program and three students have certified it as their minor. Three others have begun the process of certifying neuroscience as their major.
Students who earn a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience are well prepared to enter graduate programs in neuroscience as well as professional studies in medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine. For those who choose not to continue their training, there are opportunities open to them in the nation’s rapidly expanding biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Much of the research thrust in biotechnology today is directed at neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, AIDS dementia and multiple sclerosis.
Timing initially hindered enrollment in the program when approval by the Higher Education Coordinating Board came late in July 1997. According to undergraduate adviser Susan White, a professor of physiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine, this fall should see more students choose this new but important career path. This year, Exploring the Brain, Neuroanatomy and The Brain and Society will be among the courses offered in the major. Other courses in the curriculum include biochemistry, cell physiology, neurochemistry, neurophysiology, neuroscience of behavior and neuroscience research techniques.
Throughout the degree program, courses are taught by faculty from veterinary medicine, as well as psychology, biochemistry, zoology, basic medical sciences and engineering. WSU is home to many internationally recognized neuroscientists and the veterinary college is the base for the Northern Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience.
“Undergraduates and graduate students at WSU with an interest in neuroscience have a unique opportunity to get some of the finest training in the world right here,” said Terry McElwain, interim veterinary dean. “Our college is grateful to be a part of this unique interdisciplinary program.”
Undergraduates interested in more information about the major in neuroscience may contact Susan White at 509/335-1587 or by email at swhite@vetmed.wsu.edu.

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