LS Degree Program

– So I want to keep it very informal. If you have any questions
in the middle stop me because it’s a workshop
after all, all right. For those of you don’t know me, I’m Dr. Gadura from biology department. I want to thank CSTEP and I
want to thank STEM Academy for inviting me and spending just a few minutes to talk to you guys about biotechnology. Dr. Svoronos is gonna take over and is gonna talk about other careers that you can have with your LS1 degree. I will stick to biotechnology
itself, all right. Again like I said, it’s a new program. So just at the end of the
summer it got approved. This fall is the first
time it’s running it. Running biotechnology class
for a few semesters really and students are doing really well. All right, what is this
biotechnology degree program? It’s an associate degree
program, all right. You can get your AS degree
while you are at QCC. And then it just transfers. If you keep the GPA, I think
it’s a 3.0 GPA that you have, or maybe 2.5, I’ll double check on that. As long as you maintain a right GPA, you will get transferred into your college in their biotechnology program. But you’re not limited your college and their biotechnology program. You can transfer to any four
year college after that. So it’s not limited. Now, you see two pictures
up there, all right. For those of you who’ve
taken some biology, what do you see? What’s the picture to your left? – [Participants] DNA. – DNA, and DNA being held by forceps? So what is the picture trying to tell you? What’s the power of biotechnology here? Power of biotechnology is
you can manipulate DNA. You can play with the genes. And that is powerful, all right. So it’s the sign to the future. It’s biology of the future if you will, starting off with molecular biology and then totally taking off in so many directions from there. All right, and then you see corn, right. Yummy corn which we barbecue
and you have to have your corn. But what else you see in
the corn kernels there? Letters, just letters? You only see letters? (laughing) Some kind of prescription
pills and all that right? So it tells you you know, again, the power of genetics, the power of how much, how you can use, blend in molecular biology. And really the wave of
the future as far as now biofuels are concerned, as far as you can use E. coli to express human genes, you know. So, so many things that
can be manipulated. So that’s what you learn
with biotechnology. That’s what you’re able
to do with biotechnology. Again, biotechnology at the center there. And it’s telling you
where you can branch off. So starting with biotechnology, it’s extremely diverse
portfolio as you can see. Moving on from power
industry to agriculture, to medicine, chemical industry, food industry, you name it, all right. Because the basis of everything these days is becoming molecular biology, which has everything to
do with biotechnology. So it’s giving you extremely powerful, hands-on instruments to deal
with and diversify yourself in no matter which direction you want to pursue it in the future so you’re absolutely not
bogged down by anything. All right, so this slide
is kind of a brief overview telling you how many
different kinds of, you know, different aspects of biology blend in into a biotechnology field. So you could have molecular
biology at the heart of it. You could pursue cell culture which might lead to, you know, so many, tracers for example, where we want to find
out genetic disorders. Or you move on to DNA technology
and your crime solving, your forensics labs
end up using, you know, all kinds of things. To your genetic engineering, which is trying to again, cloning, or sub-cloning. You are mixing genes these days trying to invent something new, whether it’s new drugs, or whether it’s gene
therapy or what have you. So, so many different avenues, so many different approaches. So biotechnology is like
a blend in if you will. So many different kinds
of biology would come in for you to be able to pursue
one particular avenue, whatever you choose to in the future. All right, so who should
pursue biotechnology degree? The biotechnology website if you will, there are a couple of
main biotechnology folks around the country. And according to them they’re saying well, if you enjoy science, if you enjoy math, if you enjoy technology. And like I showed you in
the two slides before, it really is blending in
so many different sciences. And that’s the wave of future actually. No longer are people in
their little bubbles, in their little labs where
they’re only gonna be biology, or they’re only gonna be chemistry, or only gonna be physics. No, it’s now the wave of future. And definitely you guys, future scientists sitting
out here in the audience. The wave of the future is you’ve got to understand how to blend in different kind of biology, chemistry, physics, everything. Move them into one and try
to solve a problem together. All right, so people don’t just work in their own little bubbles
in own little labs anymore. People communicate. People talk to a biologist as a biologist, a chemist as a chemist. You gotta come together and try to solve a problem for the future. So that’s where we are definitely headed. As far as biotechnology
itself is concerned, about 20% of the biotech
jobs in the country are in New York area alone. More specifically, the
hub is Westchester County. All right, so a lot of
biotech companies there. And what kind of biotech companies? They could range from diagnostics, to therapeutics, to research and development. And diagnostic meaning that
they would be focusing on anytime you go for a new test. You say oh, I had this test. Well did you ever wonder who
developed that test for you? How were you able to test something? So kids born in New York, the newborn screening there, about 20 different genetics
tests that kids are tested for. All right, mothers just
sign that little signature. They don’t even ask. The law was passed several years back. And now they automatically
would test every kid who’s born for those genetic disorders. So think about who developed those 20, you know, orders, and how were they able to
screen for them very quickly in a short and effective period of time, and so on, so forth. So there could be companies
dealing with that. There could be companies
dealing with gene therapies. Again, new way of treating patients and so on, so forth. So you have all kinds of companies. Let’s say you’re not into science, you change your mind later. You can go into management, all right. They definitely need, if you’re good with business for example, and you’re good with science, you can use those skills, all right. So it’s not one thing
that you’re stuck in. You have a passion for science. You have a passion for business. You could do, you know, be involved in their management. Okay, so other kind of careers. Again, biotech industry
is growing over 90% in the last 10 years. And it’s gonna continue
to grow, all right. Because like I said, it’s the wave of future. The whole next generation of medicine, whether it’s biofuels, whether it’s your new drug discovery, depends on biotechnology, all right. So jobs could range from, you know, simple lab workers that people need, bench workers, right. So you could start off as that. Or you could get into
research and development. A friend of mine, she was really good in science, so she got her PhD in that. She was also good in English. So what she ended up doing, I don’t know if any of you pay attention when you buy some medicine, some prescription, or even a Tylenol, what have you. You open a little packet, there’s a little pamphlet
that comes with it. Most of us don’t really read it. But next time you open a drug, pay attention to it. There’s a chemical structure drawn, and everything is laid out. What is that drug all about? What does it interact with? How does it stop you? How does it make you better? The whole thing is written. Who writes that? They have to hire a scientist
to write that, right. And that scientist has
to be good in English. So just the point I’m trying to make is, you can blend several
different kind of majors to create a job market for yourself. Again, if you’re good
in sales and marketing, you can be selling something. Some of this equipment
is really expensive. It could be a quarter million dollar, half a million dollar worth
of equipment these days. Very expensive, fancy equipment. So if you’re selling a quarter million dollar worth equipment, you’ve gotta have some
knowledge of science, right. So it could be, you know, that you’re interested
in that kind of thing. You can approach that avenue, if you will. Manufacturing, quality control. So there are all sorts of workers needed at all sorts of levels. All right so, what else can you do with
biotechnology degree? Like I said, you can work in biotechnology
industry itself. You can work in pharmaceutical companies who are developing drugs, any public, private hospitals
who might be doing research, private, public universities
who might be doing research, forensics labs. So there all sorts of
places that you can work. What kind of educational
skills do you require to get a job? So you’re starting your careers
off at AS degree, all right. With the AS degree, it’s
your foot in the door. You can get in in some kind of, you know, technician level job, a bench worker. And then we don’t expect
you to stop studying, right. You can pursue your bachelor’s degree, get your master’s. Now there are two way of
jumping from master’s to PhD. Most of people, if they know that they
want to pursue a PhD, they would take this master’s degree, what we call an en-route master’s degree. So you’re not enrolled into separate. If you think, well I’m not too sure if I want my PhD yet. Then you can absolutely
finish a master’s degree and then worry about a PhD. So the timeline I’ve mentioned, of course four years for your bachelors, two years your associate, two years to finish the
rest of the bachelors, two years your master’s, if you choose to do it separately. And if not, then you can
just continue with your PhD which might take another four years. (microphone thumping)
Excuse me for that. And then most likely you’ll do a postdoc. All right, postdoc is now you’re
becoming more specialized, or you’re diversifying your portfolio. You tried to work in one thing
on one project in your PhD, and now you want to move
on to something else and pursue something else. Well you’re gaining experience
as you’re doing postdoc. But you’re getting paid for it, all right. So as you go into your PhD program, if you are, like I said, after your bachelor’s, if you made up your mind
that you want a PhD degree, you’re not paying out of your pocket. Most likely you’re getting
some kind of scholarship. Going rate around this
area, New York area, is about 24, $25,000 a year. They will pay for your medical, you know, most of the time. So it’s some kind of money
coming in inside your pocket. You’re not paying for it yourself. Tuition is usually covered for PhD’s. And postdocs, you’re making a salary. Career options. What can you do? You can go in some kind
of academics, all right, which is again, teaching. Mostly it could be heavy
duty teaching load, or it could be just a research position where you’re just doing research
in some kind of university. All right, so it depends on what kind of position you’re looking for, what kind of university
you’re looking for. Then you could work in
an industry, all right, where you are again, research and development, heavy on that. You could be part of developing drugs. Or as I mentioned before, there are several other
careers within industry itself, or developing some kind
of diagnostic tools, and so on, so forth. You could also work in a hospital setting. There are plenty of
hospitals around the area who have so much research going. All right, so you could be
part of any one of their labs. Now I want to sort of, I don’t want to paint a rosy picture and say everything is all good. So I kind of broke the talk
down into pros and cons, to what I see, the way
I see it, all right. For different people it might
work differently and so on. So for the academic position now, what are the pros? As I sat down to type this, and given the economy, I realized, wait a minute. So academics is pretty much
recession proof, all right. So as the recession started, guess which business picked up more? I hate to call it business. But you know, the enrollment was up
in colleges, all right. So academics, you can’t really go wrong. People need to study, right. So if you are in an academic setting, then you have a good position right there because your job is not gonna be lost just because there’s a
recession around, all right. You have pretty much flexible schedule. If you’re not a nine to five person, although we work beyond
nine to five sometimes. But we don’t feel like we’re
working beyond nine to five. So very flexible hours. Or until 12:30 right? (laughing) So gratification, all right. That’s what people who are, most of us. I can just speak for myself
and a few other people I know that we are really humbled, you know, when our students come back to us and say, oh professor, I did this and this. A little email that we get from them, I’m already doing my PhD. I have several students
right here from QCC. I’m only here four years. But even in those four years, I get emails back. A student of mine just
last week came back. She’s in a PhD program, you know, doing her pharmacy, getting her pharmacy
degree right here in LIU. So just those little notes
are extremely gratifying. And when you get in those shoes, you’ll realize, you know, as hard as it is while you’re
going through the semester, it’s pretty gratifying later on. All right, engaging students in some kind of research projects. Most of the faculty at
QCC do that, all right. So you have to be just brave
enough to go and ask them can I get involved in a research project. It will pay later, all right. So that’s what the pros are. Now cons. If you’re asking me well, is everything good? No everything is not good, as is life. All right, there are challenges. And academics would have
its set of challenges. Now, the research that you’re
gonna do will pretty much be at the basic level, unless you are at Columbia, or very high end institutions where you can pretty much go ahead and do whatever you want to do. All right so, funding. Research costs money, all right. Things are not gonna
be happening for free. So of course, who’s responsible
for getting funding? You are, all right. So if you are PI, you want to run a research project, then it’s your responsibility
to find federal dollars, or whether it’s state dollars, or whatever the case might be. So that’s competitive, all right. No guarantees that you’re
gonna get it, but you’ll try. And then funding can change from one administration to next. So with Bush administration, it was hard to get funding. Obama administration came, funding was a little,
getting a little easier. Didn’t trickle down yet, but we hope that it does, all right. So things change. Now let’s say you say
academics is not for me. I don’t want to teach. I don’t want to do research
in a university lab. Then you want to pursue industry. It has its own pros. Pros is you are really heavy duty into developing a new,
whether it’s a vaccine, or a new drug, or what
have you, all right. So it’s a lot of work involved. The cons there are that
there’s no flexible hours. All right, you’re working your tail off. So most likely, they consider a 80 hour work
week a normal work week. It’s not considered overtime, all right. So it’s a lot of work that you’re doing. But there are, you know, benefits at the end. Benefits is you could be patenting a vaccine that you just made. Or you would have your name
on a drug that you just made, and so on, so forth. So chances to collaborate. There’s a whole team of people working to put one drug out on the market. You’re talking hundreds of scientists from all across the board working together to get
one drug out on the market. Heavy duty on ethics. I put that big on the bottom because every few years, we see a drug came out on the market, and so and so people died, and this happened, that happened. So you have to have really
strong ethical skills. And that ethics goes
for academics as well. I’m not saying that there’s
no ethics in academics. You have to have ethics. The minute you step into a research lab, the minute you set into
a scientific setting, you gotta have very strong ethics to deal with the situation, to deal with your work, all right. So if you choose to work
in hospitals, same thing, except that it’s kicked up even more because now you have patients, all right. Now you’re no longer static in a lab where you’re just dealing
with maybe some samples. Now you have patients and
patient samples to deal with. So it’s a whole new level, if you will. All right, it’s a whole new
way of thinking about things. Research takes a whole new meaning. And you could be working in diseases that might be close to you, all right, whether it’s Alzheimer’s or you could be just passionate about something and you want to go join that lab. Again, you don’t have to be an MD. But if there’s an MD working, you hook up with the MD. And the MD PhD’s make
great teams to do research in lab kind of settings, in hospital lab settings. Cons, again, cons is funding, all right. You’re running a research lab. You are responsible for getting
the money to run the lab. And hospitals would again, be competing for those federal dollars, you’re writing grants. And good thing about hospitals is actually you get a lot of private donors. You get a lot of rich
people who just leave millions of dollars sometimes, all right. But you have to have those connections. You have to be able to
sell your project to them so that they can leave you
those millions of dollars. All right, so unfortunately,
research does not come cheap. All right, so what do you learn at QCC? If you’re in the biotechnology program, my Biotech 453 class, I just laid out a few things. This is just a small list
of things, if you will, that you learn. And it’s hands on. I have a couple of biotech majors, or students in the audience. They can vouch for that, that these are real equipment, real things that you will end up using. My goal is when you walk
out of the labs here, you should be able to
walk in a lab setting and be able to work with things. You should not be intimidated. Oh I never used this. I don’t know how to touch it. So it’s nothing fake that I
make my students work with. It’s all real hands on. And we went through great
lengths to get real equipment. And that’s what you end
up using, all right. So whether it’s extracting DNA, which we start off with, or whether restriction just
means scissors to cut DNA which was the first picture
that I put up there. Or whether it’s running a gel
of DNA to see what’s going on. Or whether it’s protein
that you’re looking at. I make my students
pluck their own hair out to get their own DNA so they can do DNA
fingerprinting, all right. So it’s a lot of fun stuff
that we ended up doing, or we do end up doing. The point is, you learn things hands on. And that’s the goal. That’s the bottom line. I want QCC students as
they exit out of this class to be able to go work
in a real lab setting with real equipment. That’s my goal. All right, there are two other new courses we’re offering for the
first time in spring. It’s a genetics course
and computational biology, bioinformatics course. Genetics is your plain vanilla genetics. But it is genetics for majors. So if you are pursuing a medical degree, a dental degree later or
what have you, all right. It’s gonna be a genetics that
you’re gonna end up taking. And it’s transferred over
to a four year college. Bioinformatics is the wave of the future. All right, again, that’s where science is heading. That’s where biology is heading because all the information
is on the computers. We’re not teaching this course from a computer programmer perspective. We’re teaching this course from a biologist perspective of course. The idea is you have all
the sequences online. So what do you do with those sequences? How can you harness that goldmine that people are sitting on? Human genome, as most
of you probably know, was sequenced back in the year 2000. It was finalized in the year 2003. It’s been seven years we’re
sitting on that sequence. All right, and for the next hundred years, scientists are gonna be
very busy trying to uncode what’s hiding in those
sequences, all right. So it’s something that’s here to stay. A few pictures I thought I
show you faces, all right. So these are some of my
biotechnology students. They all smile, which means they should
be having fun I hope. All right, but at the end, biotechnology classes
honors class, all right. Which means they have
to make presentations. And that’s great because it’s building up your CVs. It’s building up your applications. When you apply for
schools later, you know, it’s something to say on the application, that hey, I did that. All right, and then hard work
is already rewarded, right. You have students who
are making presentation and some of them end up winning awards. Not everybody wins. But hey, the fact that
you went to a conference, you presented, is great. How many people get to say that? So it’s up to each one of you
to take charge of your future, to take charge of your careers
and say, I can do this. All right, so there’s
absolutely nothing stopping you but you yourself, all right. There’s plenty of again, faculty, and plenty of mentors at QCC campus. Biology, chemistry, physics. We’re all busy people
trying to help you out. That’s what we’re here for. And then they win and that’s really icing on the cake. So this is just October 23rd. One of my students, he won first place. And I have another student Alana, who again, very recently,
just a few weeks ago, won at a national conference. So it makes us feel
double special, all right. It makes them feel
double special that hey, they must be doing something right. So when she puts up her CV or her application for any school, applications are gonna go at
the top of the pile, all right. Because here’s someone who’s competing among the rest of the pools. So get involved in research
early on, all right. That’s word to the wise if you will. All right, excellent
investment of your time, whether you’re getting paid for it or not. I did my research in undergraduate and not got paid a dime. But it’s not the money, all right. I know sometimes money is
important and what not, so there might be some
help available out there. But try to spend some time. If you’re sitting, chatting, eating away or whatever and
just gossiping and texting, use that time, all right. Be involved with a project
and be involved in a lab. Whatever you learn, again, experience is priceless. I cannot say that enough. All right, so I will answer questions. Any questions at all? No, yep. – [Participant] I have a question. I’m curious about you mentioned biology class 453 and that we will learn the different DNA procedures and that. But I’m curious what is the
prerequisite for that course? – Prerequisite is just 201. A C or better in 201. – [Participant] Oh cool, thank you. – Yes. (participant murmuring) Absolutely, yeah. You know, whatever experience, whatever background you come with. I take students in my lab
with no research experience. I don’t expect associate students to have research
experience quite honestly. So they come in with a clean slate. It’s my job to teach them, right. That’s what we’re here
for, to teach you guys. But you have to make the first move, yes. – [Participant] So if you haven’t taken any biology class from QCC, can you go straight to that class? – No, 201 like I said. 201 is the prerequisite, yes. – [Participant] I have one question about one of the slides. Could you just go back? Again, more. Keep going okay, yep, keep going. Keep going. Nope, one more, okay. It says there’s less job security. What did you mean by that? – Less job security. And it’s not to scare people
away from industry or whatever. But the point is that projects finish, and jobs
finish with the projects. So people chuck projects. Let’s say they hired a
team of 20 scientists to pursue something, a drug that’s not working, all right. Management has a quick decision to make. Should they continue
pouring millions of dollars into that research? Or should they stop the project? So that’s what I mean by job security that projects could finish. Depends on how good you are. You could get rehired, or even within the same company, you could start on a different project. But it’s not as secure as let’s say an academic position might be. People spend their lifetime in industry. So no need to worry about that. – [Participant] I’m just
trying to understand what the job security connected to… – Right, so it’s a relative term really. Anything else I can answer for you? No, all right thank you. (audience clapping) – My name is Paris Svoronos. I happen to be one of the
faculty members in chemistry. I was asked to give you an overview of what is expected of you when you get a degree in LS1. So I’m gonna go, basically I’m going to be
a little bit more general. But I also, oops, sorry. Basically I will talk to
you a little bit about AS liberal arts and sciences, math and science degree. The suggested requirements, and these are in the catalog, that just came straight
out of the catalog, is that you need to take English 101, 102, and health 102, social sciences, history, another humanities course, which can be also another
social science or a history. Speech, gym, which is one credit. And of course a math class, a 411 math class. Usually our students take the
two writing intensive classes before they graduate out
of this pool of courses. English 101, 102, they do not offer writing intensive, neither speech does. But the other classes can
be under several sections. The concentration science courses, these are the courses that go with LS1, are basically general
chemistry one and two, bio 201, 202, math 441, 442, organic chemistry 251, 252, physics 301, 302. Physics, you can replace it
if you’re good in calculus, with for instance calculus physics which is 411, 412, 413. In the catalog, they also
suggest foreign languages. But there are other departments
in four year colleges where they really do not care so much about the foreign languages. Some schools require that. So what we always suggest to the students is that when they take
their science classes before they graduate, they better take them here, and finish up with the first
two years of sciences here rather than go somewhere else. The reason is the following. If you go to any four year college, you’ll find out in organic
chemistry for instance, there are 200, 300, 400
people taking the course at the same time in one classroom. That’s when they are sophomores. When they become juniors, what happens is that those
people who took organic that do not necessarily have
to take physical chemistry if they are biology majors. They do not have to take biochemistry if they are engineering majors. And they do not have to
take engineering classes if they plan to be chemistry majors. And so therefore, automatically the classes
start becoming much smaller. And if you go for instance to most four year colleges in CUNY, you will realize that the number of people that are in the third year classes, the fourth year classes, are probably one tenth of
the people that used to be, at least in chemistry, that used to be in general
chemistry and organic. Now, many of you are here and you have to take prep classes. These prep classes do not
count towards the degree. These are basically the same
type of classes that you take, for instance, like basic skills. This doesn’t count as English 101. So therefore, the prep classes now often are being taken by students who are not very sure what
they really want to do, or they have weaknesses
in math or chemistry. But they certainly do not count. And I want you to understand that. So people think that, you know, when you graduate you get 60 credits. And then automatically when you transfer, they’re gonna take all 60 credits. That’s not necessarily true. What happens is they take those classes that really qualify as the degree. So those classes that I’m talking about are basically math 13,
there are no credits. Math 120, this is algebra, trigonometry. Theoretically, this is supposed
to be a high school course. Any basic skill classes
that have no credits, which are of course
prerequisite for English 101. Any speech oh five and oh six which are prerequisites for Speech 211. Chemistry 120, 121, which is four credits. 127 is four and a half credits. And bio 110 and 115
which are four credits. And then we have chemistry 128, which is four and a half credits that we really, highly recommend because the organic chemistry course is arguably one of the top
most difficult courses, three most difficult courses, in any science curriculum. I must point out though that this really does not
affect your financial aid. Even though, as you probably know, you take basic skills classes
and they have zero credits, there is something called equated credits. And these are added as if
they were real credits. So therefore, your financial
aid basically requires 12 credits. And we have had people in the past who do all these remedials, do basic skills classes, one math class, and maybe a chemistry 120 class, and they hit the 12 and a
half, or 12 credits limit, a minimum that they require
for the financial aid. Okay, so now the good thing that LS1 has is that really you don’t have to decide what you want to do. Because most of the courses that you’re gonna be taking in LS1 are applicable to basically
all science degrees. And that’s great, good news. Because you can always change your mind. You don’t want to become
a physician assistant. You want to become a chemical engineer. You don’t want to become
a mechanical engineer, or chemical engineer, and you want to become
for instance a doctor, or a vet. And so therefore, that’s the good news. So really do not, you know, psyche yourselves out, this
is what I really want to do. Don’t worry about that. So the degrees basically that
LS1’s help you to get in, are two types of degrees. Degrees that require earning
a BS first in the sciences. Which means you go for
instance to Queens College and get the degree in biochemistry, or biology, or physics, or math, or chemistry. I don’t want you to become chemists because I want job security, okay. (audience laughing) But you need to get a bachelor’s first before you go into the
professional degree. And an example of this for
instance is medical school. Most of the medical schools require, the good medical schools require, dental school, osteopathic medicine, and vet school. These ones require the
bachelor’s for sure. Sometimes they require even more. Okay, so now degrees not require
really earning a BS first in a science related curriculum. Example, physics, chemical, math, physics. Sorry, I meant biology sorry. No hard feelings. Thank God Dr. Gadura is out. Okay, instead now students
can get their LS1 degree and then transfer to the
program of their choice, okay. Now which ones are they? Well, pharmacy is one. Pharmacy is a six year degree. It used to be four in the ’80s, early ’80s, when you were minus 10. And then it became five years and now it’s a six year
degree which is called PharmD. So people take usually a
three year degree here, finish up the three year
degree and then transfer to the pharmacy program. Then we have physician assistant. Physician assistant is
basically two years here and then two years more. So it’s just a bachelor’s. Physical therapy is
actually a master’s program. Stony Brook has a very good program there. Then we have pharmaceutical sciences. At York College, it’s a
recent degree that we had. And this is basically is an excellent way of
going into industry. And then of course we have chiropractic. Okay, so let me talk about for instance, I’m not going to go over
every single one of them. I just picked the pharmacy because many, many students come to me and they say they want
to become pharmacists. So we have a pharmacy doctor, pharmacy program. And we have first three
years at Queensborough, and then four years at a pharmacy school. So what do they require? Again, the standards courses. English 101, 102? Social sciences, usually four courses. Speech, mathematics, calculus one and two, pre-calculus at least and calculus one, general chemistry one and two, bio one and two, physics one minimum, and microbiology. These are the standard courses. Now every school has its own requirement. So you must understand the following. Queensborough is basically
an open admission program. There is no competition to
coming to Queensborough. If you go get out of here and you want to go to a program, you have to understand it’s competitive. And there is not really
too much of a guarantee that you’ll make it. Therefore, you have to
apply to several schools. And when you apply to several schools, what you’re gonna have to do
is you’re gonna have to check what each school requires
for the first two years. There is something else also
that you ought to understand that most of these post-Queensborough
colleges or programs, they like to see people
completing something. ‘Cause it’s a business for them. Pharmacy for instance, most pharmacy schools almost exclusively all pharmacy schools are actually private schools. There are two only in New York City. One of them is St. John’s, and the other one is LIU. St. John’s does not accept transfers. Why, because they want
everybody who goes there to pay for six years of education. In the past, they used to accept, but then they let us go. And then we have LIU and it’s getting more and more difficult to get into LIU, to the extent that they may consider you if you have a GPA at the
end of the first year. But then if you want to go after you complete your second year, the GPA must be a 3.5 cumulative. Which means that the second year, you better get a 4.0 or else. And so therefore the situation
becomes very difficult at least in New York City. And so therefore as a result then, our students have gone to either Albany, or Buffalo, or Rutgers, and they have done tremendously well. CUNY is working actually
on a degree in pharmacy. It’s gonna be in conjunction with York. It’s gonna be stationed at York. Again, we expect this to start
in about two years or so. I’m not sure about it. Don’t quote me there. But it doesn’t really matter
for you because you’re here and you still have to take courses for the next year or two. So it really doesn’t matter. The major problem that I understand, and again, don’t quote me, is the fact of internships. In the fifth and sixth
year of any PharmD program, there are internships. And all of them are locked by contract by LIU and St. John’s. And so therefore CUNY is
basically negotiating to find out any internships for this. But again, you don’t
have to worry about it. A year from now, two years from now, you know, there will be
other options coming. So don’t really psych yourselves out. So what does a student
need to be able to make it through these programs? The GPA is not enough. This I guarantee you. It is not enough. I can tell you several examples and cases of students with a 3.6 GPA, and made it to pharmacy program, and people had a 3.9
GPA and didn’t make it. And there are reasons behind it. And I will explain to you. I will give you a coverage
of those reasons in a second. So why is this the case? Because everybody who applies to a program usually has good grades. And has completed all courses
required by the program at the time of application. You also must understand, what you’re doing is you’re
going against gravity. Because the best candidates
for pharmacy school will be people who are reaching, applying to go to medical school. And for whatever reason,
they couldn’t make it, so they go one step below. You’re doing opposite. And going against gravity, according to Newton’s law, and I’m not a physicist, is a little bit more difficult. Is it possible? Absolutely yes. The question is, how hungry are you? How hungry are you? And I’m gonna ask this
question again, all right. So how do we make
ourselves more marketable? The GPA is not enough, we know that. And you can always say go
to, pick up the nice professor who doesn’t harass students
and everything else. And you’re probably
looking at one of them. And then what happens is
you can basically get a 4.0. And you may have a bad day. You may be a spectacular student and you may have a bad
final, and you get a C. It happens, things happen. So therefore, what do we need to do? And this is the most important
slide in the whole talk. The resume. You must have a solid resume. And I’m going to exploit every single one of these six issues that go with a resume. You have to build a resume and the resume is made
out of scholarships, internships, and honor societies, reference letters, undergraduate research, community service, extra quality courses, and honors classes. And I’m gonna go every single one of them. So bear with me. Okay, so the first thing
that students always ask is how ’bout those reference letters? Oh I got an A in the class. I can ask the professor to
write me a commendation letter. Well, you need a reference. That’s true, whether it’s a job, or whether it is a degree. Now a professor, you need a professor who knows your work ethic, right? A professor, a person… The person who’s gonna write
you a commendation letter must be someone you have worked for. Someone who can say for instance that you show up on time, do the work, etc. A person who can attest
to your community service. Someone in church, mosque, temple, or whatever. A Queensborough person
you have volunteered for. For instance, there are several people who go through ST 100 and they help the instructors of ST 100. Or any other person who knows you well. You need someone who can
say that you’re someone who doesn’t have blue
eyes, more than that. We don’t want this. So the question is, what do we do? Well, you must understand the faculty is never obliged to write a commendation letter. He’s doing you a favor. This you must understand. He has absolutely no obligation, okay. Of course, I do write a lot of letters. And if I don’t like to
write a commendation letter, I’ll tell you straight in your face, okay. Now a faculty member needs
to write more about you than just the fact that
you did well in this class. If the faculty member writes that you got an A in
chemistry one, so what? The person who is going to
look at your application will check the transcript and find out you really got an A. So what if you got an A? Doesn’t say too much. There is something the faculty like to do. There’s always something
that asks students to either waive the
right to see the letter, or not waive the right to see the letter. You must tell the faculty, show the faculty that
you trust the faculty. That’s why you ask if the faculty to write a commendation letter. So therefore usually, you waive the rights to
tell him or her I trust you, that you’re gonna write something decent. It’s very rare that a faculty member say I’ll write you a commendation letter, you waive the right and then
he writes a lousy one, okay. So you have to show goodwill
to the faculty member. Goodwill opens doors. You must give ample time to the
faculty to write the letter. Don’t come and say, listen, it’s 5:20 and I want the
commendation letter by six o’clock. Do not go and send him an email. It doesn’t work. And don’t ever text message
to the faculty member and write U as U instead of Y-O-U, okay. Once you know the results
of your obligation, whether it is positive or negative, okay, you should inform your instructor and thank him or her. Just do something like this because, you may change the program, and you may ask a faculty member again. And so therefore you need the
faculty on your side, okay. So you must really express your gratitude to this faculty member, okay. Okay, number two. We need scholarships, internships, honor societies. We have Phi Theta Kappa. If you have a GPA of 3.5, it’s a one time, $60 fee. I think if you have that GPA and you think you’re gonna be solid by the time of graduation, being a member of GPA is good. Because there are many
schools that give you at least partial scholarships. In the department, there are certainly Queensborough scholarships and awards. Our department has a ton of those. Okay, biology has a ton of those. Math has a ton of those, okay. Many scholarships from your church, temple, or mosque. That’s important. There are many churches that do that. I know for instance I had at
least three Korean students who got this type of a merit scholarship. Even if it is a partial scholarship, it’s something excellent
to have in your resume. Summer internships. There’s nothing called you take off three months for vacation. This doesn’t sound good. We have internships with
the water department. In the last three years, we had a total of 28 people who went in the water department and got paid for work
for about 10 to 12 weeks. I think 10 weeks. About $3,000 for this work. What they do basically is the following. I don’t know if you know it. I do not care so much about Dasani, also because it’s expensive. But the New York water is
very, very, very clean. Every day, there are about
3,500 samples of water that are being analyzed. So there’s a bunch of people that actually go on the boat
and collect water samples. And then they go to the
lab and analyze them. Most of the people who
do the regular analysis often in the summer take a vacation. But we still have 3,500 samples a day that we have to identify, right, and check the purity. And so therefore as a result then, this internship takes people and asks those kids to
do the routine stuff. And then we ask those kids also after they do the internship to go to a conference
and make a presentation. We were asked. I was asked to write a paper about this. And I was planning to do
that the last two months, but I didn’t have time. There’s something called bio-prep. Many of you have heard about it. If you do well in bio 201, your instructor will most likely ask you to go in the
summer to do the bio-prep and you also get paid there. The person who’s doing it, starting this semester, is Dr. Gadura. So this is the person to go to. So do well in bio 201, okay. No movies until the end of the semester. No text messaging. Just get a good grade in 201 and then go to Dr. Gadura. She can arrange for you
to go to the bio-prep. Then there’s Brookhaven National Lab. We do have in the chemistry department a grant from the National
Science Foundation. And we always send people in
the summer to do research. And they get paid approximately $4,000 for two months of work. We then have the Food
and Drug Administration. This is not with pay. This is free. And we’ve had several people since 2001 who actually went to the Food and Drug Administration to work. Now I would like you to understand, I know if you go to CVS, you make more money than if you go to the Food and Drug Administration
because they don’t pay. But in the resume, nobody really cares, even if you’re a manager
of the CVS, right. They like to see this Food
and Drug Administration. And when you do a project there, when you do an internship there, I will ask you to come
and make a presentation to a conference. So therefore in this case, that’s an extra star in your resume. Now community service and volunteer. You can work at Queensborough. Open house, big advisement, ST 100. You can work as a member, or you can be a member of a student government club board member. CSTEP, chemistry, biology, robotics, math lab, ethic clubs, etc. You can do volunteer work
at a religious institution, whether it’s a church,
mosque, or temple, okay. For instance, we had several people who went and contributed
to a volunteer work for collection of foods and clothes after the Haiti earthquake. We have people doing volunteer
work at the hospital, clinic, or medical office. This is very important because when you apply, you must understand that
people do not want to see that you’ve worked for two months, eight hours a day, five days a week. They don’t want to see that. They want to see that you
worked five hours a week for two straight years. Which means that you really committed to whatever you do. What are you going to do there? Nothing really too much. Mostly wheeling people on wheelchairs, you know, wheeling them out, or bringing them food, or whatever. Then tutoring. At Queensborough we have tutoring. We had also, I had tutors who in fla-shing were tutoring young immigrant children, whether it was Korean or Chinese kids. Okay, undergraduate research. We started undergraduate
research at Queensborough in the chemistry department in 2000. Dr. Karimi our chair actually, and myself, had one student at the time. And last year we had 30 people working in the department doing research. Several of you are here. Several of you have made presentations
already in conferences, okay. Now, to do undergraduate
research, you must understand. The faculty will agree
to work with a student. Faculty doesn’t have to do that. ‘Cause the faculty knows what
he or she has to do, okay. With the faculty now, if he gets you to do the work, this means he has to
teach you how to do that, which is more painful. And he has to be around you, okay. So the faculty now wants
to make sure the student, he needs to have a
student who will be there at the lab on time. He won’t cut. A student meets deadlines. If the faculty member wants a poster made, or a report made, the faculty member wants to make sure that this student is capable of doing it. The faculty member wants to see a student who’s willing to come and to work early and leave late, okay. The faculty member is
willing to repeat and explain again, and again, and notice again. And AGAIN, capital letters. Because you don’t mix here, you know, salt and water and you make a solution. You make more complicated things. And usually you need five, 10, 15, 20 times to repeat an
experiment to get it right. And then faculty member wants
someone who’s organized, willing to learn and gets along. The faculty member wants
someone loyal, okay. Now there’s a great advantage from that, because now the faculty member can write in their commendation letter that this person worked with me and made presentations
in conferences, okay. Because when people see the resume, oh you did the research under so-and-so, and you have zero presentations, what do you think the person who’s gonna look at
applications is gonna think? He’s gonna think that you
just washed glassware, took the trash out. But when you make a presentation, this means that you have
done something different. And that’s something you must understand. Okay, in return, the faculty now will try to have research
findings presented at professional conference. And the faculty member will not do it unless he or she knows that
the results are kosher. Because if the results are not kosher, the faculty member’s head
in the scientific world, down it goes, okay. The faculty member will sacrifice his time with very little compensation
helping the student and will likely write, I forgot the word write, a reference letter for the student, and include the name of the
student in the publication. This is extremely important. How important is it? I got my very first publication when I was in my fourth
year of graduate school. That’s before you were born, okay. We’ve had, in our department, the chemistry department, since 2002, 12 publications with students names. I had my very first presentation after I got my PhD. We have students who have had two, four, six, eight presentations in a conference before they leave Queensborough. So what we have done now is we have really prepared you to be accepted to the
school of your choice. Extra quality courses. Now let’s put it this way. When you are going to apply to a school, do you think the person who’s
gonna read your application will care if you know archery? I don’t think so. I mean, I don’t mind it, okay. But if I happen to be the patient, there are two things that
I care about the student’s, or the doctor knowing. A, does he know how to
put me to sleep first? Second, more important, does he know how to wake me up? So therefore, the quality
courses are important. So if you’re good in biology, take microbiology, take another one in physiology, take more courses. If you’re good in math, take calculus physics, take linear algebra. Beef up your resume with quality courses. It’s okay to have non-science courses. We have people who have
bachelor’s in arts, yet they made it to the
science of their choice based on the fact that they
took more advanced courses. So do take these classes. Computers, statistics, chemistry, physics, calculus, microbiology, anatomy, and physiology. I’m not very good in spelling. But that’s okay. I’m a chemist. Okay, then we have the honors classes. There is a chance for you in this college that if you have a minimum of 12 credits, and a cumulative of 3.4 GPA
at the time of graduation, you graduate with an honors certificate. All honors completed are recorded and designated as honors
on the transcript. And you can register only with permission. These classes, by and large, in CUNY first, which I usually call it Excalibur first, does not really have these honors classes. So if you want to take an honors class, and you believe that your faculty, the person for instance who taught you 151 knows that you’ve done a good job and wants you to go into honors classes, tell the faculty member to contact me or Dean Cuomo in
administration building and we will place you there. So the regular honors classes in LS1 are chemistry 120, 121, 127, 151, 152, the 900 series, bio 201, bio 453, bio 456, math 441, math 442, and most likely more of those
classes will also be added. All right, so the question is, you want to see examples
of some of our students? We have tons of those and we are very, very proud of them. Of course, I couldn’t put all of them because I have to get out. I have a class at three. So I picked up 12 of them at random. And I picked them up in
basically different fields. So I start with a latest success and I’m going backwards, okay. So the first one is gonna be Christine. Christine, actually she had a BA in fine arts from St. John’s. She got really tired. She didn’t like the job. But she completed all prerequisites for physician assistant program at QCC. She started from math 120, okay, and chemistry 127. She is currently now in her first year at York college’s PA program, which is very competitive. She conducted research
under myself and my wife, as well as Mr. Irigoyen upstairs, and presented her findings in
five different conferences. She also is currently working as a lab technician at Queensborough, and worked as a DEP intern, which a water department intern, during the summer of 2009. Eunchul Kim worked
actually with Dr. Chauhan. He also took honors chemistry
one and chemistry two. He wasn’t doing very well in school. But he was very, very, very, very good. And he got an AS in engineering. He’s now currently at City
College’s engineering program. He conducted research under Dr. Chauhan. And that picture you see, it was from his presentation at the national American
Chemical Society meeting. The national one. There are only two national
ones in the country every year. He was the one. They picked him up over there. And you see Dr. Chauhan in the back. We then have Agana Sayeed. Agana Sayeed got her AS in Queensborough. She’s currently at biochemistry
BS program at Stony Brook. Because she did research here, she’s working into a very highly competitive biochemistry lab at Stony Brook. And she worked also on several projects. And she worked also as the EP intern. She actually had eight
presentations in conferences. And because of that, she was the only one who was picked up actually to work with
that specific professor. Emily Hughes left school. She came back. She got her AS in Queensborough in 2008. She got her BS in
pharmacology in Stony Brook. She conducted research under Dr. Shin. And the paper is ready to get out now. She got a very rare award which is the American
Association of University Women scholarship award. She conducted some research on a Princeton City College project. And she’s currently working on a one year research
appointment at Stony Brook while preparing for medical school. When she first came here, they told her, go into nursing. She finished in two years. Nadia Aboley got her two
year degree in LS1 in 2008. She’s in her fifth year
of pharmacy at Buffalo. She conducted research under Dr. Sullivan in the biology department, and she presented at five
different conferences. She was from Ivory Coast. She is still from Ivory Coast. She became an American
Chemical Society scholar. This is a very rare award because they take 100 students
from the whole country. And I’m talking about not
only community colleges. She’s actually the second
person who got this award. They put side by side to the Stanford, and the Harvard, and Yale kids. She conducted some research
at Rutgers University. Okay James actually got an AS degree at Queensborough. And he did research. He got a degree, he got accepted to the
chemical engineering programs at both Cornell and Cooper Union. I don’t know if you know it, but Cooper Union is very,
very difficult to get in. But it’s free. You don’t pay a penny, okay. He chose Cooper Union of
course because it’s free. And it’s extremely, extremely well respected college. It’s near Chinatown. He got his bachelor’s in 2008, and he got his master’s
free, both of them. And then he conducted
research under Dr. Vargas who worked with another professor, Dr. Stephanie at St. John’s. And he presented at five
different conferences, including Rutgers. And he’s currently now a New
York University dental student. So you see how people change careers. From chemical engineer, you go into dentistry. Milda was a dropout nursing student. That was in 2003 when she came to us because she was actually dropped out of both Hunter and St.
John’s nursing programs. So she came to take 127
but she was very smart. She got her two year degree here. She became a physician
assistant at York College. This was the first group of people that graduated from York
College as physician assistant. There were 300 that applied. They took 21. 11 of them graduated on time. She was one of them. What else? She went to the Undergraduate
Research Symposium and she made two presentations. The first person ever, because she worked at the
Food and Drug Administration. Also she currently is a PA at
Queens General Hospital, okay. Hoda came here with a GED. So she got her two year degree. Then she got a bachelor’s
in chemical engineering from also Cooper Union. And then she now is a
PhD student engineering at the University of California. And she conducted research
under Dr. Karimi and myself, and Pedro Irigoyen. And then she presented at
four different conferences. Remember, if it was today, she would have presented more. But that was back in 2003, 2002. So the situation, we were not really very well
endowed in terms of money to send people out. Carlos was actually the
same time with Hoda. He got his bachelor’s in 2003. He got his bachelor’s in biology. Nobody’s perfect, but that’s okay. Then he got a PhD in CUNY biochemistry, is getting it very, very soon. He conducted research, again with us, presented at four different conferences. And then he conduct also
research with Dr. Schneider at Queens College. Berman Tsun was actually a business major. She came in and she was about to graduate. She needed one course in the sciences. The only course that was
available in chemistry was actually honors chemistry one. And that was back in 2001. So she got, after that, she got actually something that
is an extremely rare thing, which is the Barry Goldwater Scholarship. It’s extremely rare because there are about 300 people that get it every year in the whole country. And there were only two. There were two people actually. One from Queensborough and one from another
community college that did it. There were five from
Harvard, and four from Yale, and six from Stanford. So she was one of them. And she got her bachelor’s at Binghamton. She got her pharmacy degree at LIU. And now she is the second person ever to do research here in the
chemistry department with us. Rourke actually graduated
before we started research. But he started with a bachelor’s. He got his master’s in
chemical engineering. He got a master’s also
in chemical engineering from Cooper Union. And then he went to nigh-com
and he became a doctor. So now he’s a physician. So you see again how careers change. None of the courses… All the chemistry ones, all the organic ones he took, all of them counted. Two more. We have han-cu-poc. Han-cu-poc came here. He took 127. And he got his AS degree with us in ’98. Got his bachelor’s in biochemistry sum cum laude from Queens College. And he got a master’s in biochemistry at The Graduate Center. And then he became, now he’s also a physician. And then here comes Jaime
Lee Rizzo who actually she came to us, she took 127 and remedial math. She basically came out of Hawaii, pregnant with her second baby. And you know she was
basically going for nursing. She got her two year degree and then she went to Queens College. She got her master’s and PhD. And then she actually now is a professor and deputy chair of
chemistry at Pace University. And she got elected a couple months ago as the American Chemical Society New York section chair of 2012. So where are the colleges? What are the colleges and universities those students went to? So you see all these different places. They are all on our chemistry website. Dr. Shin was kind of to put them up there. And these are students
who actually graduated from these schools. Louisiana State University
was another student of mine who actually became a vet. At Duke University, there was another young lady who actually became an environmental scientist, etc. And the jobs that I have here, which also appear in the website are the current professions
of Queensborough former chemistry students. Chemists, biochemists, chemistry faculty, environmental chemist, engineer, environmental lawyer, a pharmacist, a dentist, a physician, and others. So if you have any questions, I’d be more than happy to answer. This is my contact. You can always email me. Many of you I know. Many of you stop by my
office all the time. So I’d be more than happy to
answer any of your questions. Any questions? Yes. Speak up. (whistling) She has a question. – [Participant] Okay,
in order to take 151, do you need to take math 20 and then 21 to be able to? – Okay there are people, in
order to go to 151 these days, you will have to do math 120. If you haven’t completed math 120, What we suggest is that you
go into chemistry 121 or 127. Okay, but you haven’t completed math 120. So you go direct to chemistry 151. There’s no reason. – [Participant] So there’s no… – No reason, no, no, no. This means you can handle the
math for chemistry 151, yes. – [Participant] Is there a big difference between LS and LS1? – About what was it? – [Participant] Liberal arts degree and… – Okay, the liberal
arts degree is a degree, it’s a AA degree. That’s a different situation. You don’t have to take
more than one science. This is if you want to become a writer, you’re gonna become a
person of history, whatever. The AS… (participant murmuring) It’s very difficult because
you still have to take chemistry, and biology, and math. And there are a lot of people. For instance, can you see
the very first person. He was basically not an AA, he got a bachelor’s in arts. And why not? So therefore as a result. To go to PA, she had to take all the courses again. That’s why she came to us, okay. All right, okay. Any other questions, yes. (participant murmuring) Okay, okay. She’s graduating with a degree in… – [Participant] Liberal arts. – Liberal arts. You still have to find out if you want to transfer to
the college of your choice, they’re gonna ask you, you know, you’re gonna Google them
and find out what they need to have completed. It’s very rare that they will accept you without having completed
the basic classes, okay. So what I would suggest is
that you take the classes here, you graduate from here, very important. Because if for whatever
reason something happens and you’re in the third
year somewhere else without having a three year degree, okay, and then for no reason,
you stop going to school, and you want to apply for a job, what is your highest degree? High school. Even if you have 119 credits. It’s high school. Then what you need is you need to have at
least something to show that you’re above high school. And that’s a three year degree. And also, four year colleges
do like to see people having people who can complete something. Because it’s a business for them, okay. Any other questions? Any other questions please? Any other questions, yes sir. – [Participant] The
concentration courses you listed for the LS degree, are those strictly those? – These are the ones, the
minimum that are required. What I would suggest that you do is you go the school of your choice, figure out what they want. Every school has its own rules. There are schools, for instance pharmacy, that requires a thesis. Others don’t. There are schools in pharmacy
that require physics. Others don’t. They prefer to see microbiology, or the one who’s having geology. – [Participant] I want to get into like computer science field and… – You go to again to the
school of your choice okay. And if it’s computer science, I suggest you find an
advisor from math department and see what the situation. Go to the math department,
the second floor. Ask for and advisor, one faculty member who is in computers, and they will tell you, okay? Yeah. (whistling) – Regarding a reference letter, do we at least give a
professor two weeks notice? – Minimum 1 week is a
very nice thing to do. But you have to tell the
faculty member who… You have to tell the faculty
member what happened. Because even if it’s negative, you cannot come back two
months later and tell him, you know, it’s negative. I need another letter. It doesn’t work this way. Say, I’m sorry, I will be trying. I will keep you in mind
when I apply again, something of that type. Just make sure that you don’t
break the connection, okay. Any other questions? Any other questions? Well thank you very much. Oh wait a minute, one question. – [Participant] Getting involved
in a summer internships. What do we do for that? – Okay, you need a commendation
from a faculty member. For instance, if you
want to go into the DEP, we like to see some
people who have at least, at least finished up the general one, hopefully general two
also with a good grade. For the bio-prep, you contact Dr. Gadura. You have to have at least
a B maybe in bio 201, okay. But again, you must understand, even if you an internship
without getting paid, it’s nice to get paid, okay. But if you do it, what you’re shooting for is basically embellishing your resume. This is what tells
people who you are, okay. And the fatter it is, the
better off you are okay. Any other questions? Any other questions? Thank you very much. (audience clapping) – Now is a good time to
give a special thanks for Dr. Gadura and Dr. Svoronos for taking their time to give these presentations. So let’s give one round of applause. (audience clapping)