Skip to main content

Microbiology & Cell Science

Microbiology & Cell Science


Polina Melik-Simonian, M.S.

Job: Hematology

Company: Japanese Equipment Manufacturer

“This is a great way to enhance your education even without prior biology background from anyplace in the world and at your own pace.”
- Polina Melik-Simonian, online microbiology master’s program graduate 

Cutting-Edge Microbiology Education

“I was working as a strategic planning director at an advertising company. At a certain point I realized that I need much more knowledge of medicine because I was absolutely not happy with the level of education that an average M.D. had around me. There’s so much going on in this field every year that sometimes the person who was trained years ago now might know less about a certain procedure than I if I had just Googled [it]. I started reading a lot of medical literature and then realized that I want more structured, basic training. Also, when I was a youth, I was thinking of going into biology and microbiology in particular, and in a way, I’ve regretted [not doing so]. So that’s how it started.” 

“I was looking at different [master’s programs], but somehow it was [UF’s] that really found me. Struck me. I did not seriously look into others. I just looked into [UF’s] courses and thought that it would be something that I really want to study.” 


A Global Master's

“Obviously, I needed a 100% online program because I was working full-time and living abroad. I was traveling a lot around Russia and abroad. My family lives in Uganda. I was sometimes in Uganda, sometimes in Kazakhstan on a business trip or in Germany at the regional headquarters of my company, and even taking exams from there, because sometimes business trips and exams coincided.”

“[When my youngest daughter] was going to sleep, I was lying near her and patting her and listening to my lectures. From something like six months old, she was listening to all the lectures that I was.” 


Dream Job Achieved! 

“Once enrolled into the UF microbiology program, I started looking for a job in medical devices or pharma-related disciplines. And eventually I found it. I believe that had I not had UF enrollment as a confirmation of my strong intent, I would not have gotten it. [My position] was at first market researcher, and in a year, I got promoted to the head of the hematology business unit. [My UF degree] first helped me to find a dream company, and then I was promoted to my dream job.”


Loved Our Classes

“I cannot say that there was a course which I did not enjoy. Immunology was absolutely the best, the most interesting and the most needed for my present work. The professor was just absolutely great. He’s fun. He’s very smart and very to the point. The course was interesting, not only because of the program but also because of the professor.  Biochemistry, although the hardest, really prepared me for the courses to come and I learned a lot. Bioinformatics, although second hardest, also proved interesting and opened a whole new field.” 


Part of the Gator Community

“I wanted to somehow mingle and see some of my fellow students. You know, I was not for a very long time at the university and wanted just some communication. There were usually about six to eight [students] in the office during their office hours and they were exactly the same people with very few differences. So, we got to know each other quite well by the end of the course. It was fun.” 


Become An Expert in Your Field!

Check out our Master of Science in Microbiology and Cell Science program!

At A Glance

  • $535.00 per credit hour plus fees
Application Procedure
  1. Complete the Application Intent form
  2. Complete the Graduate Application
  3. Send your Transcripts