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Undergraduate Programs

Wildlife Undergraduate Programs


Wildlife, Fisheries & Aquaculture

  • Conservation Biology

    Students interested in managing biodiversity with wildlife habitat with the goal of protecting species and ecosystems should consider this major. Students will be equipped to address population ecology, imperiled and at-risk species, global threats to biodiversity, preservation of naturally-occurring wildlife and habitat, conservation of wildlife outside their natural habitat (zoos and preserves), conservation planning, and the social and cultural elements of conservation.
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  • Conservation Law Enforcement

    Students who wish to seek immediate employment following receipt of a bachelor of science degree and to obtain positions related to natural resource law enforcement positions such as conservation officers, park rangers, and wildlife inspectors should select this concentration.
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  • Human-Wildlife Interactions

    This curriculum provides the educational background for those students wishing to pursue a career as wildlife biologists with a strong background in wildlife damage management to resolve human-wildlife interactions.
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  • Wildlife Agriculture Conservation

    This curriculum provides the educational background for students pursuing careers as wildlife biologists or conservationists in agricultural areas, which requires a strong background in both wildlife biology and agricultural science.
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  • Wildlife, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science

    Students who complete this concentration are eligible for certification by The Wildlife Society but are not qualified to become Registered Foresters in Mississippi. This degree is intended for serious, academically strong students who can maintain an A-B grade record (GPA > 3.00), which is the minimum required for admittance into graduate degree programs.
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  • Wildlife Veterinary Medicine

    This concentration is offered to students who wish to fulfill the academic requirements for entrance into veterinary school, in Mississippi as well as throughout the United States, but wish to complete a baccalaureate program before entering into veterinary school. This curriculum satisfies the academic requirements of The Wildlife Society Wildlife Certification.
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Undergraduate Studies

The Department offers a major in Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture designed to provide students with curricula that has foundation in biology, ecology, natural resources management, social sciences, mathematics, and other educational subjects needed by natural resource professionals. 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.

Students may select one of six academic concentrations each of which requires completion of a specified major core curriculum. These concentrations include Conservation Law Enforcement, Human-Wildlife Conflicts, Wildlife Agriculture Conservation, Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Science, Wildlife Veterinary 3+1 Program and Wildlife Veterinary 4-year Program. 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.

Coursework in all concentrations enables students to fulfill requirements necessary to become certified by The Wildlife Society as an Associate Wildlife Biologist. The Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture concentration exceeds requirements for certification as Associate Fisheries Scientist by the American Fisheries Society.

While pursuing degree programs, students may gain practical experience by working in laboratories, internships, and directed individual studies programs offered through the University, college, and department. Student internships are often available with state and federal agencies and industry. Students may network and meet other students and professional biologists through participation in student organizations, such as Student Chapter of the Wildlife Society, MSU Chapter of American Fisheries Society, and Quality Deer Management Student Association.

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.


CFR Dean's Council

The CFR Dean's Student Council provides the means for the exchange of information and ideas between the student body, faculty and administration. It coordinates and supports activities that enhance professional growth and social welfare of CFR students and provides counsel to the Dean on academic and extra-curricular aspects of student life. The Dean's Student Council plans and conducts the CFR Fall Bar-B-Que, the Annual Student Awards Banquet, and assists in welcoming visitors to the CFR ate events such as MSU Discovery Day. Membership is comprised of four elected officers (CFR Interschool Council) and the President/Chairman of each recognized CFR student organization.

Advisor: Cory Bailey | Email 

College of Forest Resources Ambassadors

The CFR Ambassadors are a select group of students representing all departments within our college. Ambassadors are selected after submitting an application and attending an interview. Meetings are held every two weeks and responsibilities vary depending on the needs of the college.

Advisor Cory Bailey | Email 

Ducks Unlimited Bulldog Chapter

We are an organization dedicated to waterfowl and wetlands conservation. We are currently the # 5 collegiate chapter in the nation, and #1 collegiate chapter in Mississippi 4 years running!!!
Facebook: Ducks Unlimited Bulldog Chapter

Advisor Brian Davis | Email 

Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Related Sciences

MANRRS is a student organization aimed to promote the inclusion of ethnic and cultural groups that are under-represented in agricultural and natural resources and related fields in all phases of career preparation and participation.

Faculty Advisor Scott Willard | Email 

MSU Student Subunit of the American Fisheries Society

Chartered in 1982, The MSU Student Subunit of the American Fisheries Society became one of only 30 student subunits in 1999. The student subunit provides social and professional interaction among MSU fisheries students and professional fishery scientist. Students, staff, and faculty are eligible for membership in the subunit. Only students may hold office. The MSU Student Subunit of the American Fisheries Society meets monthly during the fall and spring semesters.

Faculty Advisor: Wes Neal | Email 

Pre-Veterinary Club

Students looking for exposure to all aspects of veterinary medicine will want to join the Pre-Vet Club. Students learn the procedures to apply for admission to vet school and participate in various fundraising events and social activities such as bowling and a trip to the national pre-veterinary student meeting.


Quality Deer Management Association, Hail State Branch

The Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA) is a non-profit wildlife conservation organization dedicated to ensuring the future of white-tailed deer, wildlife habitat and our hunting heritage.
Facebook: Student Branch of QDMA

Faculty Advisor Steve Demarais | Email 

The Wildlife Society

The MSU Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society is an official Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society, an international, nonprofit, scientific, and educational organization serving professionals in all areas of wildlife conservation and resource management. The goals of this organization are to enhance growth as wildlife professionals, to prepare for careers in wildlife, and to keep up to date on research findings, management issues, legislative activities and professional news. The Student Chapter offers not only a chance to meet other students interested in wildlife but also an opportunity to learn about current research and management programs. Both social and professional events are planned for the upcoming year.

Faculty Advisor Leslie Burger and Chris Ayers | Email Leslie Burger | Email Chris Ayers 

Wildlife Law Enforcement Club

The MSU Wildlife Law Enforcement club was established in 1997 by students in the current Conservation Law Enforcement concentration in the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture. The club has a two-fold purpose: 1) to provide a vehicle for social and professional interaction among MSU conservation law enforcement students, faculty, and professionals in conservation law enforcement; and 2) to promote professionalism among conservation law enforcement students at MSU. The club meets monthly during the fall and spring semesters. Meetings are designed to keep students updated on current natural resource laws and regulations, and interact with conservation officers from various state and federal agencies.

Faculty Advisor Kevin Hunt | Email 

Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture Graduate Student Association

The Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Graduate Student Association represents the needs, opinions, and interests of the WFA graduate students to the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Aquaculture, College of Forest Resources, and Mississippi State University. This organization also organizes and implements a guest-lecture series on topics related to wildlife, fisheries, and aquaculture open to the university.

Faculty Advisor Andy Kouba | Email 

Xi Sigma Pi

Xi Sigma Pi is the national forestry honor society. It was founded at the University of Washington in 1908. The MSU Chapter Alpha Theta was founded in 1971. The objectives of Xi Sigma Pi are to secure and maintain a high standard of scholarship in forest resources education, to work for the improvement of the forest resources profession, and to promote a fraternal spirit among those engaged in activities related to natural resources. Some of the qualifications for election to membership are: (1) 74 semester hours completed with 10 semester hours in CFR professional courses; (2) regular registration in the CFR for one semester; (3) minimum 3.00 GPA in total and CFR courses; and (4) character and personality. All students enrolled in the CFR are eligible for nomination.

Faculty Advisor Hui Wan | Email