MCLA expands biology program


MCLA recently expanded its biology program to include three new exciting concentrations: biotechnology, pre-physical therapy, and occupational therapy.

The new biotechnology concentration involves students in the cutting edge of scientific research as they learn about the advancements in the field of proteomics-the study of proteins and their structures and functions.

Protein profiling data obtained through this technology is used in cancer research. Additional biomedical applications of proteome research and analysis include autoimmune disorders, Alzheimer's disease, infectious diseases, and cardiovascular disease. Researchers also use protein profiling for drug discovery and to assess effectiveness of treatment. 

Careers in this growing field include those in laboratory technician work, education, communication or sales and marketing, manufacturing, business development, or information technology. 

The College also offers a 2 + 2 program with Berkshire Community College (BCC) in Pittsfield, which allows BCC students who complete an associate's degree within the molecular biotechnology concentration to transfer seamlessly into the biotechnology program at MCLA.

MCLA's pre-physical therapy concentration provides students with the background required for most doctoral physical therapy programs.

Physical therapists help patients-including accident victims and individuals with back pain, arthritis, heart disease, fractures, head injuries, and cerebral palsy-by providing services that restore function, improve mobility, relieve pain, and prevent or limit permanent physical disabilities. They restore, maintain, and promote overall fitness and health.

Within this program, MCLA students have the opportunity to work closely with the College's partners at Williamstown Physical Therapy. In addition, the College has an articulation agreement with the Sage Graduate School in Albany, NY, which allows students who meet admission requirements to be accepted into that school's doctor of physical therapy program.

The occupational therapy program at MCLA also allows students majoring in any field to continue their studies with a master's degree in occupational therapy.

Occupational therapists help people who have conditions that are mentally, physically, developmentally, or emotionally disabling improve their ability to perform tasks in their daily living and working environments. These professionals also help patients develop, recover, or maintain daily living and work skills.

The field of occupational therapy is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations in the coming years, making job prospects in this area bright. And, in another agreement with the Sage Colleges, students successful in MCLA's occupational therapy program may transfer to the Sage campus to complete their master's degree in this field.