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Education news: Rowan-Cabarrus adds biotechnology

SALISBURY — With the recent start of the 2007 spring semester, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College (RCCC) began offering courses in a new degree program in biotechnology. The associate degree program will prepare students for careers as biotech research assistants, laboratory technicians, quality control specialists and biotech product sales representatives.

RCCC is offering the biotechnology program in collaboration with Gaston College and Forsyth Technical Community College. Students can take most of the courses in the two-year program at RCCC and complete the requirements at either Gaston College or Forsyth Tech. RCCC plans to offer all of the program courses when its biotechnology teaching facility on the N.C. Research Campus in Kannapolis opens in late 2008.

The associate degree program in biotechnology emphasizes course work in biology, chemistry, laboratory techniques, mathematics and cooperative work experience.

RCCC’s new associate degree program in biotechnology joins two other biotech programs offered by the college. Students in RCCC’s associate degree program in industrial engineering technology can choose a biotech option. This biotech concentration will prepare students for bioprocess, specialized manufacturing and facilities management positions.

Students also can complete the BioWork course offered through RCCC’s Continuing Education division. The BioWork course gives students a broad overview of the biotech industry and prepares them for entry-level bio-manufacturing jobs. Other biotechnology programs being considered by RCCC include associate degree programs in bioprocessing and agricultural biotechnology.

Individuals interested in biotechnology degree programs at RCCC should contact Dr. Ed Otto, RCCC director of biotechnology. Persons with questions about the BioWork course should talk with Ann Morris. Both Morris and Otto can be reached at 704-637-0760.

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