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Professional & Technical – Aquaculture Technology

There are two ways to study aquaculture at Brunswick Community College: 1) The Online Continuing Education Program and 2) The Curriculum Programs, leading to the Certificate (requires 1 semester), the Diploma (requires 2 semesters), and the 2-year AAS Degree in Aquaculture Technology.

 

Online Continuing Education Program

No state residency requirement, open to everyone. These are non-credit courses designed for farmers, entrepreneurs, investors, and others interested in learning about aquaculture but who do not wish to pursue a degree.

Please contact Lori Summerlin to register: summerlinl@brunswickcc.edu or 800.754.1050.

Continuing Education Courses Available Online

  • Aquaculture
  • Advanced Aquaculture Part 1
  • Advanced Aquaculture Part II
  • Aquaponics/Sustainable Agriculture

Note: Summer Session Courses (May through July) are structured over a 7-week period, which requires 11 hours per week, versus 5.5 hours per week in a standard fall/spring semester period.

 

Course Title: Introduction to Aquaculture

Note: May be taken simultaneously with the Aquaculture courses listed below.

Course Dates:

Summer Schedule – May 19 – July 7, 2014

Fall Schedule – August 25 – December 8, 2014

Course Cost:  $180

Course Description:  This online course is a comprehensive introduction to commercial Aquaculture, or the farming and husbandry of aquatic organisms, including fish, mollusks, and crustaceans. The course will include the fundamentals of fish and shellfish culture, including discussions of the various types of culture systems used (ponds, raceways, recirculating systems, etc.), water quality management, nutrition and feeds, diseases, genetics and breeding, harvesting and transport, economics and business, sustainability, and regulatory issues. Culture techniques for species of commercial importance are incorporated into the course, including channel catfish, tilapia, trout, hybrid striped bass, yellow perch, marine shrimp, freshwater shrimp, oysters, clams, blue mussels, and other species. The course is structured in 14 weekly modules requiring approximately 5.5 hours each.

The course is self-paced, and may be accessed any time 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The instructor is available any time via questions posted on the course wiki or by email.

 

Course Title: Aquaponics/Sustainable Agriculture

Note: May be taken simultaneously with the Aquaculture courses listed above and below.

Course Dates:

Summer Schedule – May 19 – July 7, 2014

Fall Schedule – August 25 – December 8, 2014

Course Cost:  $180

Course Description:  This online course is a comprehensive introduction to aquaponics, the combination of fish production in recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) and hydroponic plant production. The course will include considerable information on the design and construction of aquaponic systems, with emphasis on the use of locally available and low-cost construction materials. Other major topics include techniques for fish culture in recirculating systems, water quality management, nutrition and feeds, diseases, genetics and breeding, harvesting and transport, economics and business, sustainability, and regulatory issues. Hydroponic plant production, particularly the production of food plants, is incorporated into the course, with information on the various types of hydroponic systems, selection of growth media, plant species selection and production, maintenance of plant nutrient solutions, and plant disease and pest management. Alternative marketing of fresh fish and vegetables through local niche markets will be discussed as well. The course is structured in 14 weekly modules requiring approximately 5.5 hours each.

The course is self-paced, and may be accessed any time 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The instructor is available any time via questions posted on the course wiki or by email.

 

Course Title: Advanced Aquaculture Part 1

Note: May be taken simultaneously with the Aquaculture courses listed above and below.

Course Dates:

Fall Schedule – August 25 – December 8, 2014

Course Cost: $180

Co-requisite/Prerequisite: Introduction to Aquaculture (or comparable introductory aquaculture course)

Course Description: This online course is an advanced course designed for persons seeking greater in-depth knowledge about subjects such as aquaculture facilities design and construction, fish genetics & breeding, diseases and parasites of fish and shellfish, and the management of fish hatcheries. The course is designed to follow our continuing education course called “Introduction on Aquaculture”, but is open to anybody with a good introductory background in aquaculture. It may also be taken simultaneously with “Introduction to Aquaculture”. The course is set up in 14 weekly modules, requiring approximately 5.5 hours each.

The course is self-paced, and may be accessed any time 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The instructor is available any time via questions posted on the course wiki or by email.

 

Course Title: Advanced Aquaculture Part II

Note: May be taken simultaneously with the Aquaculture courses listed above.

Course Dates:

 Fall Schedule – August 25 – December 8, 2014

Course Cost: $180

Co-requisite/Prerequisite: Introduction to Aquaculture (or comparable introductory aquaculture course)

Course Description:  Advanced Aquaculture, Part 2 provides advanced information designed for persons seeking greater and more in-depth knowledge about particular topics in aquaculture, including 1) advanced water chemistry, aquatic ecology, and environmental requirements for aquaculture 2) water discharge and effluent management 3) pond dynamics, liming, fertilization, and aeration, 4) management of aquatic weeds, and 5) hatchery management. The course is designed to follow our continuing education course called “Introduction to Aquaculture”, but is open to anybody with a good introductory background in aquaculture. It may be taken in series starting with Introduction to Aquaculture, then Advanced Aquaculture, Part 1, and finally Advanced Aquaculture, Part 2. Advanced Aquaculture, Parts 1 and 2 may be taken simultaneously. Both of these courses may also be taken simultaneously with “Introduction to Aquaculture”. The course is set up in 14 weekly modules, requiring approximately 5.5 hours each week. The course is self-paced, and may be accessed any time 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The instructor is available any time via questions posted on the course questions forum or by email.

The course is self-paced, and may be accessed any time 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The instructor is available any time via questions posted on the course wiki or by email.

 

Instructor for Aquaculture, Advanced Aquaculture, and Aquaponics: Dr. Doug Holland

Dr. Holland earned a Ph.D. from the Department of Fisheries & Allied Aquacultures at Auburn University. He owned and operated a private commercial fish farm in North Carolina for 10 years. He has been Director of the Center for Aquaculture and Biotechnology for more than 20 years, where he has taught hundreds of students in both curriculum and continuing education classes in aquaculture. He has experience in aquaculture on three continents (North America, South America, and Africa).

 

Curriculum Programs

Curriculum programs are fully accredited academic programs designed for college level students who wish to earn a Certificate, Diploma or Associate Degree in Aquaculture Technology.

Please contact Kelly Cordero in Admissions to apply for the curriculum programs in Aquaculture Technology: corderok@brunswickcc.edu (910) 755-7414 or (800) 754-1050

For descriptions of our 1-semester Curriculum, 1-year Diploma, and 2-year Associate in Applied Science Degree in Aquaculture Technology, along with aquaculture course descriptions, please refer to ”Catalog & Handbook” under the “Students” tab on the main page of this website. For information on our fully online Certificate and Diploma in Aquaculture Technology, refer to “Brunswick Online” under the “Programs” tab on the main page. Students entering the BCC Aquaculture Technology Program generally fall into at least one of the following three groups:

1. Aquaculture/Mariculture Articulation Agreement Between UNCW & BCC

BCC students who complete the Associate of Applied Science degree (AAS) in Aquaculture Technology will be considered for admission into the UNCW Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology Program with Mariculture emphasis. Students seeking admission to the UNCW program must maintain at least a 2.5 overall GPA while at BCC and comply with all terms and conditions set forth in the agreement. Students may transfer up to 64 semester hours of credit, which would allow them to enter UNCW as a junior year student. Please see the Aquaculture program director for further information and advising.

2. Traditional Aquaculture vs. Sustainable Aquaculture & Aquaponics

Traditional aquaculture, like other forms of traditional agriculture, often requires considerable resources to get started, including land, labor and capital. If you have these considerable resources at your disposal, then traditional aquaculture may be a business opportunity for you, and we cover that in our aquaculture courses here at BCC. If like most people you do not have such considerable resources available to you, you still have options! By taking advantage of local, direct-to-consumer marketing opportunities through what is referred to as the “Local Food Movement”, producers receive much higher prices for their fish and shellfish, and can therefore succeed on a much smaller scale than in traditional aquaculture.

Sustainable Aquaculture: The production of fish and shellfish in ways that minimize negative impacts on the environment, that produce a healthful product for the consumer, and that are marketed in a manner that maximizes benefits to the producer, the consumer, and the local economy. Examples include small-scale production of species such as catfish, tilapia, bluegill, crawfish, and freshwater prawns that are relatively low in the food chain, using tanks, static ponds, and other controlled water containment structures, without the use of pesticides or added hormones, and marketed through local farmer’s markets and restaurants.

Aquaponics: Perhaps the ultimate form of sustainable aquaculture, aquaponics combines the production of fish in recirculating aquaculture systems with hydroponic vegetable production, utilizing waste from the fish as fertilizer for the vegetables. Featured in numerous newspaper and magazine articles and documentary films as the “farm of the future”, a small aquaponics facility that will produce enough fish and fruiting vegetables to feed 15-20 people may be located on ¼ acre of land, with minimal water requirements and wastewater discharge. The only regular resource inputs required for aquaponics systems are fish feed, moderate amounts of electricity (which may be supplied using solar or other forms of renewable energy), small amounts of potassium, calcium and micronutrient fertilizers to balance the nitrogen fertilizers produced by the fish, and your own skilled management of the facility. Here at BCC, we are on the cutting edge of aquaponics and sustainable aquaculture development. These concepts are woven into every part of our program, and as a graduate of the BCC Aquaculture Technology Program you will be well prepared for a future in this very exciting field of endeavor.

3. Aquarium Science

Many students come into the BCC Aquaculture Program with an interest in working in the public aquarium industry. Over the years we have developed a course in “Aquariology” that is designed specifically for these students, and virtually every part of the aquaculture program is applicable and useful to graduates who seek employment at public aquariums throughout the US. We maintain a particularly close relationship with our local public aquariums, including the NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher and Ripley’s Aquarium in Myrtle Beach. Several members of our curriculum advisory board are employed at these two public aquariums, and internship opportunities at these and other aquariums are available to our students.

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Contact

Dr. Doug Holland
Director, Center for Aquaculture & Biotechnology
hollandd@brunswickcc.edu
(910) 755-7432

Lori A. Summerlin
Community Services Programs Coord, Computer Info. Technology/Computer Programming Inst.
summerlinl@brunswickcc.edu
(910) 755-7408