Cobleskill, NY — SUNY Cobleskill announced today that it is expanding its Fermentation Science program with a second degree option, a Bachelor of Science in Fermentation Science, to begin in the fall of 2017. The degree will prepare students for a broad variety of careers, from manufacturing to environmental conservation, as well as graduate studies.
Fermentation scientists deploy microbial processing in the production of a vast array of products, from beer, wine, and cheese to plastics and pharmaceuticals. Whereas the Bachelor of Technology degree focuses on the food and beverage industries, students in the Bachelor of Science program will have the option of specializing in food and beverage production, biocatalysis (a process used in industrial manufacturing), or the application of fermentation in an environmental context — for instance, managing waste from agricultural processes and mitigating oil spills.
With these programs, SUNY Cobleskill is responding to the growing demand for fermentation specialists in the fields of food science, agriculture, pharmaceuticals, environmental conservation and biofuels. The Bachelor of Science degree will be one of only a few in the country that broaden the fermentation curriculum beyond food and beverage production. The BT in Fermentation Science was the first dedicated and comprehensive fermentation program in the Northeast.
“The science of fermentation has applications far beyond the food and beverage industries, and we’re proud to offer our students a unique path to this thriving field,” said Susan Zimmermann, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at SUNY Cobleskill. “These programs are a perfect example of SUNY Cobleskill’s innovative and responsive approach to education.”
Industries that require fermentation specialists are vital and growing economic drivers both in New York State and nationwide. Many common products involve fermentation in their production, from bread, wine, cheese, tea, and yogurt to biodegradable food packaging, nylon, and penicillin. Even hydrogen gas as an alternative fuel might be prepared in a fermentation process.
Following SUNY Cobleskill’s philosophy of applied learning, students in both the Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Technology programs will gain hands-on experience working with local co-ops, through internships, and by conducting or assisting research projects on campus. Graduates will be prepared to enter the field immediately or pursue graduate studies in microbiological sciences, environmental studies, or medical school.