Applied Biotechnology

B.S. in Applied Biotechnology

Reimagining sustainability using live cells

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Median Industry Pay (U.S. BLS 2023)

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Boost the biological building blocks of life to make greener technology and products.

The B.S. in Applied Biotechnology teaches students how to use chemical and biological processes to address the world’s most pressing challenges in food production, health and sustainability. You will develop a solid foundation in microbiology, plant biology, food science and nutrition, and pick one of three emphases to customize your coursework. When you graduate, you’ll be ready for a career in biosciences -- working in agriculture, food or manufacturing.

Students in the Applied Biotechnology major can choose one of three emphases:

General Applied Biotechnology: Prepare for a career developing biotechnology like vaccines, enzymes, biofuels and biologics in academic, institutional or governmental laboratories.

Food & Beverage Fermentation: Be on the forefront of fermentation science in the food industry, turning ingredients into exciting, high-value products.

Industrial Plant & Microbial Biotechnology: Make new products by genetically engineering plants, fungi, bacteria and more.

The College of Agriculture, Life & Environmental Sciences offers $1 million in scholarships to our students! Combine these options with university scholarships and support from privately funded scholarships and you're well on your way to achieving your educational goals at a price you can afford.

Students in the Applied Biotechnology program have exclusive access to nearly $575,000 program-specific scholarships, awarded from 64 different scholarships -- in addition to $230,000 in scholarships that are available to all or most CALES students.

A degree in applied biotechnology prepares you for careers in developing vaccines and medicines, bio-fuels, insect-resistant crops and fermented foods and beverages. It also can serve as a springboard for graduate, medical, veterinary, law, or pharmacy school.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for popular careers related to applied biotechnology in agricultural and food sciences is $76,400 per year (2023).

Although your career possibilities are limitless, here are some example career paths our students follow:

  • Biological Technician: Conduct scientific tests, experiments, and analyses in collaboration with biological and medical scientists.
  • Food Scientist: Create new food and beverage varieties and improve the safety and nutrition of existing food products.
  • Industrial Microbiologist: Monitor and solve problems related to the use of microorganisms in the production of food, medicine, and other materials.
  • Geneticist: Study genetic material in a laboratory to determine how plant, animal, and human genes interact with each other, evolve, and duplicate.

General Applied Biotechnology Emphasis:
Microbial Physiology Lab
Animal and Plant Genetics
Food & Beverage Fermentation Emphasis:
Food Microbiology and Biotechnology
Metabolic Biochemistry
Fermented Foods and Beverages Lab
Industrial Plant & Microbial Biotechnology Emphasis:
Microbial Genetics
Problem-Solving with Genetic Tools
Origins of Food Plants