Department of Biological and Physical Sciences

Conduct research in fully-equipped laboratories in the state-of-the-art Testa Science Center with esteemed faculty who will mentor, challenge and encourage you to excel.

At Assumption, it’s all about opportunities. The opportunity to work alongside faculty researchers in our state-of-the-art science center. The opportunity to gain hands-on experience at highly regarded internship sites around Worcester and across the country. The opportunity to live and learn in a community that really is dedicated to you and your future.

The Department of Biological and Physical Sciences offers majors in biology, biology with a concentration in neuroscience and behavior, biotechnology and molecular biology, neuroscience, chemistry, environmental science, and environmental science with a concentration in environmental policy. The department also offers minors in biology, environmental science, and chemistry, and it co-sponsors a concentration in physical and occupational therapy with the Department of Human Services and Rehabilitation Studies. Research opportunities are available at the University and at nearby institutions (e.g., University of Massachusetts Medical School and the Biotechnology Park).

Interested in pursuing a medical, dentistry or other health profession degree? Your faculty advisor will work with you from the day you arrive on campus to chart a course towards achieving that goal.

From the classroom to the laboratory, you’ll learn from an accomplished faculty with years of specialized experience in such fields as cancer biology, synthetic organic chemistry, and theoretical physics. You might find yourself working side-by-side with a professor conducting experiments and analyzing data – and, perhaps, publishing your results in scientific journals.

The Department of Biological and Physical Sciences continues to change and expand just as science does. We now have programs in Neuroscience and Engineering to complement our Biotechnology and more traditional Biology, Chemistry, and Environmental Science programs. Our strength continues to be our hands-on approach to helping our students learn and understand science. Students have access to our faculty not only in the classroom but in every laboratory as well. This helps them develop a firm foundation in the sciences that will carry them forward to internships and research experiences both on campus and at many of the region’s scientific institutions and companies. We take pride in our students’ successes, both at Assumption and after graduation, knowing that we are helping to advance our understanding of the world around us and to improve the human condition.

~ Brian Niece, Ph.D., Department Chair, Biological and Physical Sciences

Features and Benefits of a Degree in Biological and Physical Sciences

  • Work alongside faculty in Assumption’s 17 teaching/research labs and greenhouse in the state-of-the-art Testa Science Center.
  • Benefit from Assumption’s articulation agreements with highly competitive graduate programs – Assumption students are offered numerous opportunities for guaranteed admission and/or accelerated degrees on intensive scientific study.
  • Apply for funded research grants and choice internships in Worcester, Boston and beyond.
  • Explore our American Chemical Society-accredited Chemistry major – a highly regarded certification that reflects the expertise of our faculty and the strength of our academic program.

Department Mission Statement

The Department of Biological and Physical Sciences is dedicated to preparing students to live and work in a changing world by ensuring competency in the natural sciences and scientific inquiry. The department strives to provide a basic understanding of classical and contemporary scientific concepts in these areas. While developing an understanding of the scientific process and its application, the following critical skills are stressed: observation, inquiry, data collection, analysis, communication, and correlation of scientific concepts. The department prepares students for careers and professional opportunities in the sciences as well as for life-long learning in the context of a liberal arts curriculum in the Catholic tradition.






Engineering Science


Environmental Science


Health Professions












Department of Biological and Physical Sciences Faculty

Brian K. Niece, Ph.D
Department Chair, Biological and Physical Sciences Department Chair, Biological and Physical Sciences Professor of Chemistry
Vladimir Atryzek
Adjunct Faculty
Soraya V. Betancourt-Calle, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Practice
Elizabeth A. Colby Davie, Ph.D.
Director of the Honors Program Professor of Organic Chemistry
Stuart I. Cromarty, Ph.D
Professor of Biology
David Crowley, Ph.D.
Professor of Biology Director of ASPIRE Associate Director of the Center for Purpose and Vocation
Edward J. Dix, Ph.D
Professor of Chemistry
Karolina Fučíková, Ph.D
Assistant Professor of Biology
Mandy Gaudreau
Adjunct Faculty
Georgi Y. Georgiev, Ph.D
Professor of Physics
Maria Teresa Herd
Assistant Professor of Physics Associate Professor of Physics 3-2 engineering program director
Beth Imhoff-Kunsch
Adjunct Faculty
Benjamin Knurr, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Sanga Kuga
Adjunct Faculty
Michele Lemons, Ph.D
Professor of Biology Director of the Center for Neuroscience
Nicolas (Nikos) Lessios, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Biology
Mina Lim
Adjunct Faculty
Paul Mahon, Ph.D.
Professor of Biology
Laura L. Marcotte, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Jessica McCready, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Biology
Jean M. Mukherjee
Adjunct Faculty
Andrea Jean Pereira
Adjunct Faculty
Jessica Rosewitz
Adjunct Faculty
Anthony Sacino
Assistant Professor of Practice
Kimberly A. Schandel, Ph.D
Dean of the School of Graduate and Professional Studies Associate Professor of Biology and Chemistry
Owen D. Sholes, Ph.D
Adjunct Faculty
Steven Theroux, Ph.D
Professor of Biology
Wego Wang
Adjunct Faculty, Physics
Jessica Lucas Whitt, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Practice

Natural Sciences Resources

About the Department

    • Using carbon nanotubes for electromechanical devices
    • Developing a tool for identifying antibody-producing cells
    • Quantifying contaminants in local bodies of water
    • Studying the biology of aggression
    • Investigating the biology of metastasis in cancer
    • Developing synthetic method for interesting molecules