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Letter from the Chair 2018-19

Ken HillersLooking back on the past year makes me proud of everything we’ve accomplished together in the Biological Sciences Department. We really are an outstanding department in all aspects, students, staff and faculty — and occasionally the chair. And I know our alumni are making remarkable contributions as well.

We have 1,000 biological sciences, microbiology and marine sciences majors and also teach students from across the university. Yet we maintain our focus on giving students an excellent experience in the classroom, as shown by the awards we win.

We also collectively do a great job of getting undergraduates involved in research, which truly gives students a Learn by Doing experience. Brandon Strong (Biological Sciences, ‘18) took that research experience and used it to earn a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, which he’s using in the master’s program right here at Cal Poly.

Our common vision of excellence in teaching and research greatly benefits our students. From medical diagnostics to herpetology, from climate change to gene expression, our faculty are advancing the scientific conversation and bringing our students along with them. 

We couldn’t maintain this level of excellence without the support of our alumni, donors and friends. Your gifts are our get up and go--fish food, gas in our research vehicles, plane flights to professional conferences.

All of us in the department would love to hear where Cal Poly Biology has taken you. Please drop us a line at or stop by the department office if you’re in town.


All the best,
Ken Hillers

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