Liberal Arts - Mathematics & Science A.S. Science Concentration

Are you interested in a career in science, but unsure about which career might be right for you? Explore the areas of study or the specific career options described below.

Typical first semester in the science concentration:

CHE 131

General Chemistry 1

BIO 131 Principles of Biology 1, or PHY 131(Gen. Physics 1),
or GEO 131 (Physical Geology)
MTH 185 Pre-calculus
ENG 101 Research and Composition
??? Advised elective

*This first semester assumes the student has successfully completed three years of high school mathematics through trigonometry, one year of high school biology and one year of high school chemistry.

*Students who do not have this academic background should plan to be at JCC for 3 years


Areas of Study:

Biology

Biologists work in a wide variety of specialized settings. Laboratory work may include genetics, biotechnology, agriculture, drug testing, and physiology. Field biologists study wildlife or fish populations, marine organisms, or plants. Biologists begin with a similar course of study in general sciences and specialize as their education progresses. Transfer schools may be selected with a specialization in mind. To ensure successful transfer for students who are considering a biology vocation, students should complete BIO 131/132 and CHE 131/132 while at Jefferson. Many transfer schools require at least one semester of organic chemistry and physics. Additionally, courses in mathematics including calculus and statistics should be completed. Some transfer schools offer undergraduate research opportunities. Most biology research careers require advanced degrees (M.S. or Ph.D), while technician positions may require a B.S. degree.

Possible transfer schools : a wide variety of SUNY and private universities.

Chemistry

Pursuing a major in chemistry allows a student to be prepared for a myriad of career opportunities. Whether it be as a research chemist, an allied health professional, a pharmacist, a laboratory technician or an educator the chemistry major relies on a strong laboratory and lecture foundation to be successful. The chemistry profession employs nearly one million Americans and pays them 40 percent more than the average wage for manufacturing. And for every job in the chemistry industry, five additional jobs are created in supporting industries. Chemistry means good jobs at better wages and a higher standard of living. To ensure successful transfer for students who are considering a chemistry vocation, students should complete CHE 131/132 and CHE 211/212 while at Jefferson. Additionally, courses in mathematics through the calculus sequence and PHY 131/132 should be completed. Additional science courses in the biology area are also be helpful depending on the particular vocation being considered.

Possible transfer schools: St. Lawrence University, LeMoyne College, Clarkson University, SUNY Oswego, SUNY Binghamton , University of Buffalo, Upstate Medical Center, SUNY Albany, and SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry.

Geology

The geology discipline opens pathways to a number of different careers. These include engineering geologist, economic geologist, hydrogeologist, environmental geologist, atmospheric scientist, museum educator, science writer, earth science teacher and astronomy researcher. A student pursuing a career in the geology discipline should obtain a broad, general background in geology and the ancillary sciences as an undergraduate then specialize in the specific aspect of geology as a graduate student. To meet these criteria, a student at Jefferson should complete the GEO 131/132 and CHE 131/132 sequence and develop mathematical competency and communication skills.

Currently, it is a great time to get into a geology career. There are more job opportunities than in the past two decades and the job market is expanding as the pace of retirements continues to out pace new hires. Transfer institutes report that 100% of their graduates are either getting jobs or going on to graduate school.

Possible transfer schools : SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Oswego.

Physics

Physics is the study of the fundamental principles of nature. It deals with the properties of matter and energy. The scale of physics ranges from the smallest subatomic particles to the study of stars, galaxies, and cosmology. Physics consists of a number of subcategories some of which are high energy physics, quantum mechanics, optics, solid state physics, nuclear physics, geophysics, astrophysics, and condensed matter physics.

To become a physicist one must have a strong interest in science and mathematics. Physics relies more directly on mathematics than perhaps any other field of science and aspiring physicists must be equally comfortable in the mathematics classroom as in the laboratory. Courses students should consider taking in high school to be prepared to pursue a degree in physics would be the following: Mathematics up through trigonometry or calculus, chemistry, biology, and physics. Other courses that would be helpful, especially in the laboratory setting, would be technical classes in electronics and metal working.

JCC offers the first two years of an undergraduate education. Persons interested in physics might consider entering one of three degree programs, Liberal Arts - Mathematics & Science A.S. science concentration, mathematics concentration or Engineering Science. Students should consider completing mathematics through differential equations and three semesters of Physics for Scientists and Engineers. General physics may be accepted by some transfer institutions but does not offer optimal preparation. Also, one must take two semesters of chemistry.

Career opportunities in physics for a bachelor’s degree are limited. However, if a physics degree is coupled with a teaching certificate then teaching in the secondary school setting is an option. Physics is also a good preparatory program for other professions such as medicine and engineering. Some institutions offer dual degrees in physics and engineering. If other courses such as a sequence in biology and organic chemistry are taken then physics could act as a pre med degree. Also, an advanced degree in medical physics could be pursued allowing one to work in a hospital setting in the area of medical imaging and nuclear medicine. In general, an undergraduate degree in physics acts as a solid foundation for many career fields.

Career Exploration:

Agricultural Biotechnologist

Job Description : This career field includes positions in the biotechnology industry, government, and research universities where laboratory research is applied to agriculture and food production. Graduate studies may be required for some jobs.

Possible Transfer School : SUNY Cobleskill

Chiropractor

Job Description: Doctors of Chiropractic perform patient management and conduct diagnoses, giving special emphasis to musculoskeletal conditions. Chiropractic medicine is based on the principle that spinal joint misalignments interfere with the nervous system and may result in many different conditions of diminished health.  Persons successful in this field are able to communicate effectively, possess good manual dexterity and enjoy working with people of all ages.

Possible Transfer School: NY Chiropractic College

Dentist

Job Description: Dentists are health professionals who treat diseases of the mouth including those of teeth, gums and bones. They fill cavities, extract teeth, repair cracked and broken teeth, take x-rays, perform oral surgery, and advise patients on oral hygiene. Most dentists are general practitioners who are in private practice. There are several specialties in dentistry such as orthodontists, periodontists, and oral and maxillofacial surgeons, but these generally require further education. Persons successful in this field have good manual dexterity, visual-spatial ability, and strong scientific aptitude. Dentists in general practice can be expected to make $185,940 annually while those in a specialty may make over $315,000. There are over 50 dental schools in the nation. Acceptance into dental school usually requires a four-year degree. Because of the strong science background needed, most students opt for a science major such as chemistry or biology. Students who attend JCC for two years should pursue a Liberal Arts Mathematics and Science A.S. degree with a concentration in science and then transfer to an accredited four year institution to complete their baccalaureate degree.

Possible Transfer School : Any four-year SUNY school, Clarkson, RPI, and Cornell.

Environmental Scientist

Job Description : People in this career identify and work to remedy environmental problems. Some of these workers mix environmental science with other sciences, such as chemistry or biology. Some environmental scientists help to make laws about protecting the environment. They also help private companies follow the laws. Environmental scientists work in laboratories, government agencies, and in the field. Environmental scientists sometimes work long hours and travel to different study areas. In addition to doing science, many of these workers write reports and help find money for their projects.

Possible Transfer Schools: SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, SUNY Brockport

Forensic Science Technologist

Job Description : Forensic science technologists may be required to collect, identify, classify, and analyze physical evidence related to criminal investigations. They perform physical and chemical tests on weapons or substances, such as fiber, hair, and tissue to determine significance to investigation. Good communication skills are necessary in the event that they testify as expert witnesses on evidence or crime laboratory techniques.

Possible Transfer School : Alfred State

Forester

Job Description : Forestry careers involve managing timber resources for commercial and recreational use. Foresters are involved with measuring trees, harvesting timber, managing timbers sales, and developing forest management plans. Foresters may spend much of their work day in the field. Research foresters generally require and advanced degree (M.S. or higher, while forestry technicians may be employed with an A.A.S. degree). Persons successful in this field work well independently, communicate effectively, and tolerate the physical demands of working outdoors.

Possible Transfer Schools: SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Paul Smith’s College

Pharmacist

Job Description: Pharmacists dispense drugs prescribed by physicians and other health practitioners. Pharmacists understand the use, clinical effects, and composition of drugs in order to advise physicians and educate patients. Pharmacists must earn a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) from an accredited college or school of pharmacy. The Pharm.D. degree has replaced the Bachelor of Pharmacy degree. Most students entering JCC would enter into the Liberal Arts Mathematics and Science A.S. degree with a concentration in science and then transfer to an accredited Pharm. D. program. In addition, most Pharm.D. programs require applicants to take the Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT). Persons successful in this field are detail-oriented and able to communicate information accurately and effectively.

Possible Transfer School: University at Buffalo, St. John Fisher College

Physical Therapist

Job Description: Physical therapists work directly with people to improve strength and mobility, relieve pain and foster optimal physical performance. Physical therapists examine and evaluate patients to determine functional abilities and to develop a plan for therapy and recovery. Professional (entry-level) physical therapist education programs are typically a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT). Most students entering JCC would enter into the Liberal Arts Mathematics and Science A.S. degree with a concentration in science and then transfer to an accredited DPT program. Persons successful in this field are able to communicate effectively and enjoy working with people of all ages.

Possible Transfer School: Clarkson University, SUNY Upstate Medical University, D’Youville College, Daemen College, University at Buffalo, Utica College, Ithaca College, The Sage Colleges

Physician

Job Description: Physicians or doctors diagnose illnesses and prescribe and administer treatment for people suffering from injury or disease. Physicians examine patients, obtain medical histories, and order, perform, and interpret diagnostic tests. They counsel patients on diet, hygiene, and preventive health care. About a third of physicians are generalist including family physicians, internists and pediatricians. Specialized fields of medicine concentrate on a specific system or part of a body such as cardiologists, neurologists, surgeons and dermatologists. Usually students pursue a four year degree and then transfer to medical school. Medical school is highly competitive and requires a strong science background. Premedical students must have undergraduate courses in biology, chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, and calculus with exceedingly high grades. Most students entering JCC would enter into the Liberal Arts Mathematics and Science A.S. degree with a concentration in science and then transfer to an accredited four-year school to complete their baccalaureate degree.

Possible Transfer School: Any four-year SUNY school, Clarkson, RPI, Cornell, and SUNY Upstate Medical University.

Physician Assistant

Job Description: Physician Assistants are academically and clinically prepared to practice medicine with the direct and responsible supervision of a doctor of medicine. Physician Assistants provide a broad range of diagnostic, therapeutic and preventative services. Persons successful in this field are able to make sound judgment, perform well under emergency and stressful situations, communicate effectively and enjoy working with people of all ages.

Possible Transfer School: Le Moyne College, Albany Medical College, D’Youville College, Daemen College, Rochester Institute of Technology, Stony Brook University, and SUNY Upstate Medical University.

Secondary Science Education

Job Description: Preparation for teaching science in junior/senior high school involves majoring in an appropriate science discipline as well as completing necessary education coursework. A graduate degree is required in most states. People in this career must have good communication skills as well as proficiency in science.

Possible Transfer Schools : SUNY Potsdam, SUNY Oswego, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry.

Veterinary Medicine

Job Description : A veterinarian diagnoses and treats sick and injured animals and provides routine wellness care to a wide variety of animals including pets, livestock, and exotic species. A veterinarian performs physical examinations, laboratory tests, injections, and surgery. After completing undergraduate classes, students must apply for competitive slots in veterinary training schools. Persons successful in this field must perform well under stress, multi-task, work well independently, and communicate effectively with colleagues and clients.

Possible Transfer School: Cornell University

Wildlife Biologist

Job Description : Wildlife Biologists may be employed by federal or state agencies, non-profit organizations, or private companies to manage wildlife populations on public or private lands. Wildlife biologists may spend much of their work day in the field. Research biologists generally require and advanced degree (M.S. or higher, while wildlife technicians may be employed with a B.S. degree). Persons successful in this field work well independently, communicate effectively, and tolerate the physical demands of working outdoors.

Possible Transfer Schools: SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, SUNY Brockport, Paul Smith’s College.