School of Science
At Saint Mary’s College, we believe science is a human practice, shaped by human values and history and conducted in service to humanity.
The School of Science is dedicated to developing students into change agents, ready to tackle the most pressing problem of our time. Through a rigorous curriculum with a strong focus on experiential learning and real-world applications, you will be equipped for a wide range of careers in Natural Sciences, Psychology and Health Sciences.
We provide state-of-the-art laboratories and equipment, academic and career advising tailored to your unique interests, numerous research opportunities, and a global network of researchers and scholars. Our small class sizes and an average student-to-faculty ratio of 9:1 foster a tight-knit learning community that persists long past graduation day. The School of Science offers an expansive array of undergraduate majors, minors, pre-professional curriculum, and graduate and certificate programs.
Students begin with fundamental science principles and liberal arts courses before moving on to intensive lab work, collaborative research with faculty, and mastery of current technology.
Research and Internships
Spend 10 weeks in close collaboration with a faculty advisor on a self-designed research project, or join summer research programs at colleges and universities across the country. The Bay Area also has a wealth of internship possibilities at science and technology companies.
Alumni Award for Emerging Leader
Brianna Bibel ’16, PhD
Brianna Bibel ’16, PhD is a science communicator, diving deep into biochemistry and sharing her methods and findings on social media to inspire wonder.
Bibel graduated from Saint Mary’s with a BS in Biology and was actively involved in biochemistry research, studying enzyme kinetics. She has since earned a PhD in Biochemistry and Biology and is now a postdoctoral scholar at the University of California, San Francisco. She has been active in the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology since May 2019. Her online persona, The Bumbling Biochemist, has 55,000 followers on Instagram, where she aims to make science accessible and fun.
She is particularly interested in exploring the use of various forms of science communication and advocating for the advancement of women and underrepresented minorities in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). She hopes to become a professor at a primarily-undergraduate college.
Jared Ralleta ’24 Built a Tool Astronauts Can Use on the Moon, Mars, and Beyond
A first-gen college student, Ralleta was the sole undergrad researcher at RISE2, a NASA-funded expedition in the New Mexico desert that tests out tech for future space exploration. “I could only have had this opportunity at Saint Mary’s,” he says.
Transfer Student Success, Gurnoor Atwal '23
Biology major, Gurnoor Atwal ’23 plans to attend medical school to become a geriatric physician. Around 82 percent of eligible Saint Mary’s students are accepted into medical school; that’s nearly double the national average.
Jan Term 2023 - Scandinavia
Scandinavian countries are consistently ranked as the happiest countries in the world. Jan Term 2023 focused on discovering what it is about these societies that lead their citizens to be so happy. In examining the food, culture, natural beauty, architecture, and daily life in these countries, students explored the basis for their very high life satisfaction ratings. Students learned about the culture and robust welfare systems of Denmark and Sweden (e.g. universal healthcare and free education), contrasting it to their experience in the United States; tried a variety of Scandinavian food that they both loved (Fika and homemade pastries) and could maybe do without for a while (pickled herring and salted licorice); participated in thrilling Arctic adventures like ice skating on a lake, dog sledding, and ice climbing; and were lucky enough to experience the elusive Northern Lights dancing in the sky!