Science certificate program yields positive results for students
Students interested in a career in the sciences can get a great start with JCC’s pre-professional science certificate program.
The science certificate program prepares students for transfer to a four-year institution where they may continue as science majors or pre-professional students in fields such as pre-medicine, pre-dental, pre-veterinary, pharmacy, physical and occupational therapy and others. It provides a rigorous academic program that meets the requirements for most first-year pre-professional programs. The early science courses focus on the general principles essential to the various subjects – biology, chemistry, physics, botany, zoology, anatomy and physiology – and include a significant laboratory component.
Dr. Patricia Visser teaches biology at JCC and is the science and allied health professions career advisor. “A lot of students who are interested in a career in the health professions or scientific research don’t need all of the courses to fulfill an associate degree but do have a very specific set of courses necessary for their field,” Visser said. “We help them focus on getting their early science courses here, where we have smaller classes and students can get more personal attention.”
Visser advises students who are interested in the pre-professional science certificate and tracks requirements specific to each transfer school to guide students toward those necessary to their careers. Some of the universities that students most often transfer to include Michigan State University, Grand Valley State University, Ferris State University, Western Michigan University, Eastern Michigan University, Central Michigan University and Wayne State University. Some students do continue on to complete an associate degree before transferring.
In addition to preparing for transfer, students may also use the certificate to find employment as laboratory technicians. Laboratory technicians use the principles and theories of science and mathematics to assist in research and development and to help invent and improve products and processes, but are more practically oriented than scientists. Technicians help scientists as they set up, operate and maintain laboratory instruments, monitor experiments, make observations, calculate and record results, and often develop conclusions. Employment of science technicians is expected to grow through the year 2018.
JCC students also benefit from the excellent laboratory facilities available in James McDivitt Hall. In 2005, McDivitt Hall received a major facelift and update to its science laboratories and classroom spaces, greatly enhancing learning opportunities for students.
To learn more about the certificate program visit the Science website.
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