Undergraduate Studies

Students may select one of six academic concentrations each of which requires completion of a specified major core curriculum. These concentrations include Conservation Biology; Conservation Law Enforcement; Human-Wildlife Interactions; Wildlife Agriculture Conservation; Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Science; and Wildlife Veterinary Medicine. Over 40 undergraduate courses in ecology, organismal biology and taxonomy, habitat evaluation and management, wildlife and fisheries management, human dimensions, policy, biometrics, landscape ecology, and special topics are offered by over 20 departmental faculty and instructors. Curriculum in each of the academic concentrations will prepare students for employment in natural resource professions within private, federal, and state wildlife, fisheries, or aquaculture sectors. Successful completion of curriculum ensures that graduates are eligible for employment or post-graduate studies upon graduation.

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Wildlife Concentrations

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Conservation Biology

Students interested in managing and conserving biodiversity, ecosystems, habitats and threatened species along with developing potential solutions or advocacy should consider this concentration. Students enrolled in this concentration are encouraged to pursue an advanced degree.

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Conservation Law Enforcement

Students who wish to obtain positions related to natural resource law enforcement such as conservation officers, park rangers, and wildlife inspectors should select this concentration.

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Human-Wildlife Interactions

Students wishing to pursue a career as wildlife biologists with a strong background in wildlife damage management to resolve human-wildlife interactions should select this concentration.

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Wildlife Agriculture Conservation

Students interested in pursuing careers as wildlife biologists or conservationists in agricultural areas, which requires a strong background in both wildlife biology and agricultural science, should select this concentration.

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Wildlife, Fisheries, & Aquaculture Science

Students interested in becoming wildlife or fisheries biologists, with primary responsibilities of studying the biology, behavior and habitats of animal populations in the wild, should consider this concentration. Students will often seek employment with state fish and wildlife agencies, federal agencies, or non-profit conservation organizations.

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Wildlife Veterinary Medicine

Students who want to become veterinarians should choose this concentration.

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Become a certified professional biologist: If interested, students can be certified as an Associate Wildlife Biologist (from The Wildlife Society), Associate Fisheries Biologist (from the American Fisheries Society) or Associate Ecologist (by the Ecological Society of America) upon completion of specific sets of classes. In addition to your degree, these certifications may help in securing certain positions or pay scales within state or federal agencies. Please visit with your advisor during your freshman or sophomore year regarding your interest in receiving certifications.

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What Can I Do In Wildlife, Fisheries or Aquaculture?

A degree in Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture opens doors to many exciting career opportunities.

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Cooperative Education

Through its Cooperative Education program, Mississippi State University encourages students to receive practical on-the-job training along with their academic studies. Typically, students in this program accumulate one year of work experience in their chosen fields before graduation by alternating between studying at Mississippi State for a semester and working with a cooperating organization for a semester.

Students must complete two semesters of study and earn a minimum 2.5 grade-point average before entering the cooperative education program, and they must maintain a minimum 2.5 GPA. Generally, students begin work during the summer following their freshman year and work alternate semesters thereafter.

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Learn more about what it's like to be a part of the Mississippi State University Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture community.

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