The field of toxicology is focused on developing improved ways to identify and reduce the harmful effects of chemical, physical, and biological agents at all levels of biological organization, from molecules to humans to complex ecosystems. The PhD degree in Environmental Toxicology trains students to identify, understand, and analyze toxic agents and their effects on human health and the environment. The curriculum includes courses in the supporting sciences of biostatistics and epidemiology, as well as foundational courses in exposure science and environmental health. Additional courses provide in-depth training in risk assessment and the fundamentals of toxicology, including organ system toxicology and the effects and mechanisms of toxicity of a wide range of toxic agents. Students in this degree option conduct in-depth toxicological research on topics such as neurological, hepatic, renal, and respiratory systems; prenatal and neonatal development; and the carcinogenic and genetic effects of toxicants.
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Career paths of recent graduates
Graduates find careers in a range of private, public and academic positions, which include consulting firms; state and federal health and environmental regulatory agencies; product safety evaluation organizations; chemical, consumer products, pharmaceutical industries; and major universities. Recent graduates from this degree option are currently working as:
- A Toxicologist at Achaogen, a biopharmaceutical company focused on addressing antibiotic resistance (Class of 2016)
- A Postdoctoral Fellow at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) (Class of 2016)
- A Toxicologist at Gradient, an environmental and risk sciences consulting firm (Class of 2014)