USF Sarasota-Manatee announces biology degree program

HERALD STAFF REPORTOctober 19, 2013 

Next fall, a new biology degree will be offered with access to Mote Marine

SARASOTA -- The University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee has unveiled plans for a new biology degree that will be offered fall 2014.

The degree program will feature small classes, access to the labs at Mote Marine, and hands-on experience with Mote researchers. Plans were unveiled at this week's ribbon cutting for the new science labs at Mote Marine.

While students could not declare biology as their official major this year, they were able to begin earning credits for the degree when the labs opened in August. Classes include environmental science and principles of biology.

Dr. Arthur Guilford, regional chancellor at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee, said the new degree program will help keep Sarasota and Manatee County high school graduates in the area.

"Right now, with no biology degree like this offered by any public institution in our area, the majority of new local high school graduates and transfer students must leave our community to obtain their education, and many never return," Guilford said in a press release.

It took the university two years to approve the new biology degree in what Guilford noted is a complicated process.

The biology degree program is the first research in science program at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee.

Ruth Lando, director of communications and marketing for the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee, said the new degree will provide students with a career path for jobs in the high-demand fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics at a four-year university that is close to home.

The credits for the biology degree will be transferable to other institutions.

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