There are two certificate programs we would like to create: Biotechnology with emphasis on Molecular Biology and Biotechnology with emphasis on Analytical Chemistry. Based on labor market data from the Centers of Excellence - these are two areas that show a significant gap in the labor market. These would be 12 - 15 unit certificates aimed at satisfying the need for Biological Technicians and Chemical Technicians in the Bay Area.
The chemistry labs being offered at West Valley College are historical, baseline, ‘teach-the-basics” at best and arcane, defunct, and enormously deficient at worst. The best way to move the chemistry curriculum up 100 years from 1916 to 2016 is to introduce computers, equipment, and instruments to analyze, detect, synthesize and purify chemicals the way environmental chemists, synthetic chemists, and chemical engineers do everyday in their careers. Five years ago, the chemistry labs themselves were renovated, however, no new equipment was purchased to make use of the updates. Today, we have three labs that stand completely EMPTY of equipment. We need to purchase gas and mass spectrometers, UV-vis spectrophotometers, bench-top NMR’s, solid phase synthesis apparatus, liquid chromatography equipment, and the accompanying computers, laptops, and handheld data collection devices to train scientists and future chemists with the techniques and equipment they will use in their future jobs.
In addition, stipends will compensate the faculty who will research and create the new certificate in Biotechnology with emphasis on Analytical Chemistry.