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Contacts

Beth Burch 863-784-7230
Lead Instructor, Bioenergy Program

Tara Huften 863-784-7256
Staff Assistant, Biofuels

Bioenergy Programs

South Florida State College is accepting applications for its Associate in Science (A.S.) in bioenergy degree and college credit certificate programs in bioenergy . You can earn a degree or certificate in one of these areas:

  • A.S. in Science with specialization in biomass cultivation
  • A.S. in Science with specialization in biofuels technology
  • College credit certificate in biomass cultivation specialist
  • College credit certificate in biofuels technology specialist

The need for clean, renewable energy is growing and with it are growing opportunities for a workforce educated in the field of bioenergy. Students can earn a bioenergy degree in only two years while attending classes at the SFSC Highlands Campus.
SFSC’s bioenergy programs are the first in the state to educate students in growing biomass feedstock crops for biofuels production and for preparing students to work as system operators in biofuels production plants.

The A.S. in bioenergy degree program offers two areas of specialization:

Biomass Cultivation

This A.S. degree prepares you to work in an agriculture operation where biomass crops are grown, harvested, and shipped to a biofuels production facility for processing into biofuels. The curriculum will emphasize an understanding of biofuels, plant science, crop production, pest management, environmental management, equipment management, employability and human relations skills, marketing, and business management.  

Jobs in this sector include:

  • Grower
  • Foreperson or manager
  • Agriculture equipment operator 
  • Harvest supervisor 
  • Biofuels Technology

Biofuels Technology

This A.S. degree prepares you to work in a fuel production facility where biomass crops are received and processed into biofuels. The curriculum will emphasize an understanding of biofuels, fuel production, facilities design, water treatment, and digital electronic controllers.

Jobs in this sector include:

  • Systems operator
  • Fuel production supervisor
  • Industrial machinery mechanic
  • Laboratory technician

For information about the program and the enrollment process, call the SFSC Advising and Counseling Center at 863-784-7405.

What’s the Value of an Associate in Science Degree in Bioenergy?

SFSC’s bioenergy programs provide a foundation of introductory courses to environmental sciences and renewable energy. With a rising interest in green chemistry, sustainability, and escalating oil prices, the bioenergy industry is rapidly expanding. Many companies have an increasing need for individuals with advanced, multidisciplinary skills in bioprocessing and bio-based materials.

Students in the Bioenergy program will complete an industry internship with firms such as biogas generation plants, research facilities, and municipalities.  Practicum placements and internships are a key component of the program allowing our students to graduate with state of the art technical skills and a solid work experience in their field.

Students who graduate with an A.S. degree in bioenergy have a broad understanding of biomass-generated energy and the tools, skills, and knowledge needed to begin their bioenergy careers. After completion of the program, you are ready to enter the job market or continue your education in a baccalaureate program at a state university or independent college. 

Certificates in Bioenergy

The increasing demand for energy and renewable energy sources will continue to drive the need for trained bioenergy technicians. These college credit certificate programs in bioenergy prepare you with the skills and knowledge to get started in the industry. It will also serve as a qualification towards an A.S. degree in bioenergy at SFSC.

This certificate option may be appropriate for you if you

  • Seek an entry-level position that requires a training program of one year or less,
  • Seek immediate job-training instruction, or
  • Want to consider pursuing an associate degree at some future date.

SFSC offers two college credit certificates in bioenergy:

Biomass Cultivation Specialist

This certificate prepares you to work in an agriculture operation where biomass crops are grown, harvested and shipped to a biofuels production facility for processing into biofuels. Credits earned in this certificate articulate directly into the A.S. degree with a biomass cultivation specialization.

Jobs in this sector include:

  • Grower
  • Harvester
Biofuels Technology Specialist

This certificate prepares you to work in a fuel production facility where biomass crops are received and processed into biofuels. Credits earned in this certificate articulate directly into the A.S. degree with a biofuels technology specialization.

Jobs in this sector include:

  • Fuel production systems operator
  • Equipment inspector

Basic Admission Criteria

You may be eligible for acceptance into the Bioenergy programs/certificates if you meet the following basic criteria:

  • You have earned a high school diploma.
  • You are a dual-enrollment student.

Here’s How You Can Apply

Complete an application to South Florida State College.
Make sure the SFSC Admissions Office receives your official transcripts. These include:

  • Official high school transcripts, if required for documenting that you have met the state’s foreign language requirement by completing two years of high school instruction in a single foreign language or by completing eight college-level credits of one foreign language.
  • Transcripts from all colleges currently attending or previously attended. (Transcripts from international students must be evaluated by a recognized international transcript evaluation service.)

Bioenergy Program Plans

Associate in Science Degrees in Bioenergy

Biomass Cultivation
Program Plan - four semesters, 60 credit hours

First Year: Fall Term            
ENC 1101     Freshman English I    
MAC 1105    College Algebra    
ETP 1511    Introduction to Biofuels        
AOM 1310     Agricultural Machinery and Equipment        
SLS 1106    First-Year Experience Seminar        
                        Social Sciences Elective       

First Year: Spring Term
ENC 2210     Technical Writing        
FNR 1060     Environmental Science and Policy        
CHM 1025C     Introduction to General Chemistry        
SWS1102     Soils and Fertilization        
                        Humanities Elective          

Second Year: Fall Term    
BOT 2000    Introduction to Botany    
AGR 2643    Biomass Feedstock Crop Production    
PMA 2230     Pest Management for Biomass Feedstock    
MAN 2021     Principles of Management      

Second Year: Spring Term
AGR2645C    Biomass Feedstock Analysis and Quality Control    
AEB2102     Principles of Agri-Business Management    
AGR2940    Biomass Cultivation Internship    
CET2114C     Digital Electronics I

Biofuels Technology
Program Plan - four semesters, 60 credit hours

First Year: Fall Term
ENC 1101     Freshman English I    
MAC 1105    College Algebra    
ETP 1511    Introduction to Biofuels        
SLS 1106    First-Year Experience Seminar        
                         Humanities Elective    
                         Social Science Elective    

First Year: Spring Term
ENC 2210    Technical Writing        
FNR 1060    Environmental Science and Policy        
CHM 1025C     Introduction to General Chemistry         
EET 1036C    Introduction to Basic DC/AC Circuits        

Second Year: Fall Term
BOT 2000C    Introduction to Botany        
AOM 2230C    Ethanol Production and Processing         
EVS 2005C    Treatment of Water and Wastewater        
AOM 2231    Biodiesel Production and Design        
ETP 1501      Fossil Fuels and Alternatives          

Second Year: Spring Term
CHM 2132C    Chemical Instrumentation        
AOM 2600    Biofuels Facilities Design        
AOM 2070    OSHA Safety for Biofuels Industry        
AOM 2940    Biofuels Technology Internship        
CET 2114C    Digital Electronics I     

College Credit Certificates in Bioenergy
Biomass Cultivation Specialist
Program Plan - two semesters, 21 credit hours

Fall Term                          
ETP1511    Introduction to Biofuels
BOT2000C    Introduction to Botany    
PMA 2230    Pest Management for Biomass Feedstock    
AGR 2643     Biomass Feedstock Crop Production    

Spring Term
SWS1102     Soils and Fertilization        
AGR2940    Biomass Cultivation Internship            

Biofuels Technology Specialist
Program Plan - two semesters, 21 credit hours

Fall Term
ETP 1511    Introduction to Biofuels        
BOT 2000C    Introduction to Botany           
AOM 2230C    Ethanol Production and Processing                  

Spring Term
AOM 2600    Biofuels Facilities Design                
AOM 2940    Biofuels Technology Internship        
CET 2114C    Digital Electronics I

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