History of the Biology Department of John Carroll University

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From 1886-1928, biological science at the then St. Ignatius College (now John Carroll University) was taught as an elective, normally by faculty from other departments or by local medical doctors. Father Edward Calhoun, S. J., appointed in 1928 to chair the newly organized Department of Biology, was the first faculty member trained in biology. By 1936 the department had the stated purpose of preparing students for entry into schools of medicine and dentistry, and teaching. In I960, when Fr. Philip Vogel succeeded to the department chairmanship, serious discussions concerning expansion into other areas were held. In 1966, the department announced its intentions to make its orientation three-fold: pre-professional (medical), basic biology, and basic research. Plans for this change in purpose were slowed in 1969 with the deaths of three of the seven faculty members. Their replacement was seriously questioned, and the department was on the verge of being absorbed by Chemistry. Dr. Jean Cummings successfully reversed the opinion of the administration, and the department survived. A second change in policy occurred almost immediately when, in 1970, the department and administration agreed to seek replacement faculty for both teaching and research duties. The present faculty of eight is reflective of that policy. The department enters its second 100 years committed to both undergraduate and graduate education, with a diverse faculty and an outstanding record of achievement over the past 10 years.


Author Institution: John Carroll University



The Ohio Journal of Science. v86, n3 (June, 1986), 51-60