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Press release from Southeastern Community College
Area residents interested in learning more about the first-of-its-kind Agricultural Biotechnology Program at Southeastern Community College have an opportunity to sample the curriculum through two condensed courses that start the week of Oct. 24 and end in mid-December.
The courses, Greenhouse Operations and Bioethics, require no prerequisites and are open to all students. The Greenhouse Operations course includes topics in greenhouse construction and maintenance. Students will also carry out micropropagation in the state-of-the-art transfer lab in the Cartrette Technology Center on campus. Bioethics is an online course that covers the intriguing ethical issues in biotechnology, such as human cloning, stem-cell research, and genetically-modified organisms.
SCC was the first two-year college in the country to offer a degree program in agricultural biotechnology, defined as a collection of scientific techniques that are used to improve plants, animals and microorganisms. Benefits of agricultural biotechnology include creating new materials and energy sources, providing more nutrients, and producing new vaccines to prevent diseases.
The program, which began in the fall of 2006, is designed to meet the increasing demands for skilled laboratory technicians in various fields of biological, chemical, and agricultural technology. The curriculum objectives are designed to prepare graduates to serve as research assistants to biologists or chemists, as laboratory/instrumentation technicians, or as quality control/quality assurance technicians. Course work emphasizes biology, plant tissue culturing, biotechnology, micropropagation, agriculture, chemistry, horticulture, mathematics, and technical communication.
One of the focal points of the SCC program is plant micropropagation, in which pieces of tissue from parent plants are used to produce an unlimited number of cloned plants. This has been done successfully at the College with venus flytraps, Asiatic lilies, ferns, butterworts, and roses, among others.
For more information about the upcoming courses or the agricultural biotechnology program, contact Dr. Gino Teolis at (910) 642-7141, ext.418 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Individual and group tours of the Cartrette Technology Center and greenhouses are available.