UAB’s new undergraduate programs in genetics, genomics and immunology are now enrolled – news

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Two new undergraduate programs – Genetics and Genomic Sciences and Immunology – are interdepartmental majors at the College of Arts and Sciences and the Faculty of Medicine.

Written by: Katherine Shonesy
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The two new programs will allow students to experience collaboration in the classroom and in the laboratory in the first year. Plans to continue to strengthen interdisciplinary undergraduate education at the University of Alabama at Birmingham take a step forward with the creation of two new undergraduate programs – Genetics and Genomic Sciences and Immunology.

Both undergraduate programs are enrolling students for the fall semester 2017.

As majors shared between the College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Medicine, the two new programs will allow students to experience collaboration in the classroom and in the laboratory from the first year.

“Students will gain insight into how science can be used in medicine, transferring ideas from the classroom to the lab and then applying them to real-life scenarios,” said Steven Austad, Ph. D., distinguished professor and chair of the Department of Biology at the College of Arts and Sciences. “We are taking steps to provide an undergraduate education here at UAB that will prepare our students for the highest level of academic and professional experience.”

Genetics and genomic sciences

Fundamental to all biological processes that affect nearly every facet of human life, the study of genetics and genomics has an impact on the health and well-being of individuals, communities and entire populations. UAB, Alabama’s leading provider of genomic and personalized medicine, recently launched the Alabama Genomic Health Initiative in partnership with the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology.

As practices such as genetic testing and genome sequencing become more prevalent, the demand for qualified and experienced genetic researchers and healthcare professionals will continue to increase. The UAB program is designed to facilitate a new generation of undergraduate students who will be ideally equipped to pursue and succeed in the growing field.

“Our graduates will be able to continue from here and become nurses, doctors and genetic counselors, or they could choose to pursue graduate studies in basic research, enter the pharmaceutical industry or join a biotech startup – the The need for professionals with this knowledge base is really awesome right now, so the number of opportunities that will open up to them is truly endless.

“We believe this program will attract the best and brightest students, and career prospects will exist at many different levels,” said Bruce Korf, MD, chair of the Department of Genetics. “Our graduates will be able to continue from here and become nurses, doctors and genetic counselors, or they could choose to pursue graduate studies in basic research, enter the pharmaceutical industry or join a biotech startup – the The need for professionals with this knowledge base is really great right now, so the number of opportunities that will open up to them is truly endless.

The Genetics and Genomic Sciences program will operate as a collaborative effort between the Department of Genetics at the Faculty of Medicine and the Department of Biology at the College of Arts and Sciences. Students will participate in courses taught by experts from across campus, providing access to high-level multidisciplinary education as an undergraduate.

Immunology

The major in Immunology will give students the opportunity to learn and contribute to research in the field of immunology earlier than other general degrees, and is the only one of its kind in the Southeast and one of the few at national scale.

Focusing on the function of the immune system, which protects us from infectious diseases and cancer and is essential for the health of the world’s population, the Undergraduate Immunology program was developed in response to growing interest from students. current undergraduates.

The undergraduate Immunology program is designed to provide research opportunities and an intensive curriculum focused on immunology for students interested in pursuing careers in immunology and health-related professions including medicine, biomedical research, science education, policy and writing.

The program is an interdisciplinary effort between the Department of Microbiology at the School of Medicine and the Department of Biology at the College of Arts and Sciences.

“This represents a real collaboration between the departments of biology and microbiology,” said Frances Lund, Ph.D., chair of the department of microbiology. “We believe this unique educational opportunity will not only attract students who are passionate about science and medicine, but will perfectly prepare these students for the scientific and clinical challenges of the 21st century here in Alabama and around the world.”

The major in Immunology will give students the opportunity to learn and contribute to research in the field of immunology earlier than other general degrees, and is the only one of its kind in the Southeast and one of the few at national scale.


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