Department of Biological Sciences Selects New Chair

Photo of department chair Evanna GleasonProfessor Evanna Gleason has been selected as the next chair for the Department of Biological Sciences. Dr. Gleason began her role as chair in May of this year.

She has been with LSU for almost 23 years. Dr. Gleason earned her BS at Arizona State University and her PhD from the University of California Davis. She completed her postdoctoral research at the University of California San Diego.

The Gleason lab studies neuronal mechanisms underlying the flexibility of synaptic transmission between retinal amacrine cells. Her teaching interests include neurobiology and developmental neurobiology.  

View more information on Dr. Gleason.

About the Department of Biological Sciences

The Department of Biological Sciences was formed from the merger of the Departments of Biochemistry, Microbiology, Plant Biology, and Zoology & Physiology in 1997. This organizational change was designed to foster cross-cutting, interdisciplinary research initiatives by removing administrative and phylogenetic constraints and by encouraging interactions among our diverse faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and students. This approach is crucial for science in the 21st century and can yield significant rewards in the pace and quality of discovery. Such a strategy can bring powerful problem solving capabilities to bear on basic research questions that traditional, unidimensional approaches have been unsuccessful at solving. This change also promotes innovative educational opportunities for our students (approximately 2,120 undergraduate majors) and helps reduce fragmentation of the biological sciences curriculum. We offer three undergraduate majors – Biochemistry, Biological Sciences and Microbiology.

Under our Biological Sciences major, we offer two concentrations in Marine Biology and Secondary Education (Geaux Teach). 

We have 60 tenure-track faculty and 15 full-time instructors.

To maintain our traditional strengths and foci, we have established three Divisions within our Department: Biochemistry & Molecular Biology; Cellular, Developmental, & Integrative Biology; and Systematics, Ecology, & Evolution.

There are approximately 132 graduate students in the department. Funding for these students comes from a combination of departmental teaching assistantships, curatorial assistantships, fellowships, and external research support.