Frequently Asked Questions for Biomedical Sciences, M.H.S.

Below are frequently asked questions from both prospective and current students of the Biomedical Sciences program. 

Prospective Students

1. Am I a good fit for the program?

Most of our students come into the program with a degree in the basic sciences such as biology, chemistry or biomedical science.  There are exceptions, however, so please talk with us about your specific situation so that we can determine the opportunities available to you.

2. What undergraduate institutions do your applicants come from?

Our students represent both out-of-state and in-state institutions, including:

Appalachian State University

Aquinas College

Bowling Green State University

Calvin College

Central Michigan University

Dominican Republic

Eckerd College

Ferris State University

Grand Valley State University

Hillsdale College

Hope College

Huntington College

Michigan State University

Muskingum College 

Notre Dame University

University of Michigan

University of Zimbabwe

Western Michigan University

3. What positions have your students taken after graduation?

Our graduates have taken research, teaching and practitioner positions within the following organizations:

  • Grand Rapids Community college, instructor
  • GVSU Biomedical Sciences, Visiting instructor
  • GVSU Exercise Science, Visiting instructor
  • GVSU Medical Lab Sciences, Assistant Professor
  • GVSU Physician Assistant Studies program
  • GVSU Physical Therapy program
  • Indiana University, School of Optometry
  • Michigan State University, College of Human Medicine
  • Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine
  • Practicing physical therapist
  • Rosalind Franklin University, Physician Assistant program
  • St. Mary’s Health Care, Medical lab technician
  • University of Iowa, Immunology Ph.D. program
  • University of Michigan, lab technician
  • University of Michigan, School of Public Health
  • University of Michigan, School of Dentistry
  • Wayne State University School of Medicine
  • Wayne State University, Ph.D. program
  • U.S. Navy Seals Officer training
  • Research, VanAndel Research Institute
  • Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, Preceptor for Clinical Skills and Problem-Based Learning
  • Infection Control, St. Mary’s Health Care
  • Abcam, Eugene, Oregon
  • Perrigo, Allegan, Michigan

4. Do I have to be enrolled full-time?

See our program guides to help you determine the best program pace for you. Faculty advisors are available to help chart a program that meets your career goals and academic needs. 


1. What are some example of thesis work?

  • Absolute CD4 count in patients with HIV at initial presentation to care in a Michigan clinic, 2005-2009.  Mentor:  Jean Lee, Pharm.D., St. Mary’s Special Immunology Services
  • Assessing the validity of the body mass index classification system via raised skinfold measurement in a Division II college female athletic population.  Mentor:  Shari Bartz-Smith, Movement Science
  • CD82 inhibits prostate cancer metastasis by redistributing c-Met on the cell surface.  Mentor: Suganthi Sridhar, Biomedical Sciences
  • Change in body mass index in obese and non-obese patients following hip replacement surgery.  Mentor:  Theresa Bacon-BaguleyPhysician Assistant Studies
  • Changes in physical therapy management of low back pain with McKenzie training.  Mentor: Dan Vaughn, Physical Therapy
  • Changes in vascular reactivity of mesenteric arteries following hyperbaric oxygen treatment.  Mentor: Frank Sylvester, Biomedical Sciences
  • Conducting a Mandatory Influenza Vaccination Program at Saint Mary’s Health Care.  Mentor: Kim Greenwald, Saint Mary’s Health Care Infection Control
  • Developing diabetes educational materials for Gambian clinic staff and Type 2 diabetics. Mentor: Debra Burg, Biomedical Sciences
  • Distribution of calcium regulatory organelles in smooth muscle cells of rodent cerebral resistance vessels.  Mentor: David Kurjiaka, Biomedical Sciences
  • Effect of exercise on adult neurogenesis in crayfish.  Mentor: Dan Bergman, Biomedical Sciences
  • Effects of water temperature during post-workout cold water immersion on exercise induced muscle damage of college football players.  Mentor: Ross Sherman, Movement Science
  • Functional fatigue and isokinetic muscle performance.  Mentor: Brian Hatzel, Movement Science
  • Molecular identification of mutations within the Histidine Decarboxylase gene of Drosophila melanogaster.  Mentor: Martin Burg, Biomedical Sciences
  • Physician assistant global health elective in Nicaragua:  A review for Grand Valley State University.  Mentor:  Debra Burg, Biomedical Sciences
  • Predator-mediated competition between Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhimurium using the bacteriophage PRD1.  Mentor: Doug Graham, Biomedical Sciences
  • Profiling changes in adipose tissue gene expression in response to aging and endurance exercise training.  Mentor: Steve Nizielski, Biomedical Sciences
  • Relationship between prophylactic antibiotic use in patients who have arthroscopic knee procedures vs. total knee replacement and the rate of C. difficile infection:  a retrospective chart review.  Mentor: Theresa Bacon-Baguley, Physician Assistant Studies
  • Role of the extracellular matrix in glioblastoma multiforme mesenchymal conversion.  Mentor: Craig Webb, Van Andel Research Institute
  • Successful weight loss, weight loss maintenance and psychological characteristics in minority men and women attending an inner-city weight loss program.  Mentor: Debbie Lown, Biomedical Sciences
  • The acute effects of therapeutic activities on heart rate and blood pressure:  A literature review.  Mentor: Gary Brooks, Physical Therapy
  • The relationship between maternal feeding practices and child’s BMI and child’s dietary restraint in Mexican-American families of Grand Rapids.  Mentor:  Deborah Lown, Biomedical Sciences
  • The role of saturated fatty acids in connexin expression on endothelial cells and eosinophils.  Mentor: Debra Burg, Biomedical Sciences
  • Transcriptional regulation of M1 cells in response to IL-6, IL-10 and LPS.  Mentor:  Debra Burg, Biomedical Sciences
  • Vascular Response to pH Change.  Mentor: David Kurjiaka, Biomedical Sciences

2. How should I format my thesis?

Please visit our resources page for Biomedical Science thesis guidelines.

3. Does my thesis research have to be conducted within the biomedical department?

No. As you will see in the examples of thesis work under Question 1, our students have completed their research both within the biomedical department and externally, including though the Kent County Health Department, Van Andel Institute and more. Talk with your faculty advisor for more information. 

4. How do I choose a thesis advisor? 

Start by exploring our faculty's research interests, and see if there are any current projects that line up with your own research interest. Talk with your program advisor about what you're planning, and who might be a good potential advisor.


1. Who should I ask if I have a question about…

More Questions?

Check out our resources page for helpful guides and information. 

Page last modified November 18, 2016