Mr. Rogers was a children’s television icon who promoted peace and harmony and acceptance by bringing neighbors together. McMurry has a chance to be a good neighbor to a sister institution in Abilene. Cisco College, the local branch of our region’s most prominent community college, has received approval for their new biotech certification program. In Texas, that means approval by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. In the South, that means approval by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commision on Colleges. As the song goes, “the road is long, with many a winding turn…” But, now that the approvals are in it is time to put the flesh to the bones in the process of rolling out their program for a Fall 2010 start.
McMurry’s BIMS program has been the pacesetter in biotech education in Abilene and so is in the position to be the good neighbor in helping this new program gain traction. We are happy to do so, as growth in biotech education supports growth in biotech company relocation, and this in turn provides opportunities for our students from the Biomedical Science program.
Our initial support comes in two forms. First, we are donating some pieces of equipment to their program. The biohazard cabinet pictured above (stand not shown, some heavy lifting and assembly required!), a sequencing gel system, and several other pieces of equipment are waiting to be picked up by Cisco’s folks. As we continue to upgrade equipment we will try to place more unneeded but serviceable items in their hands. The second way we are helping is in exploring articulation options for their graduates into our BIMS program. The challenges are many, based on differences in the content and level of their courses and how they approximate courses in our program. We will do what we can to help provide an avenue for their graduates interested in continuing their education.
Being a good neighbor is always good practice. Treating others as we would want to be treated is in keeping with McMurry’s Christian tradition. That approach to what we do makes a McMurry BIMS education an exceptional experience for today’s students and tomorrow’s biotech professionals.