College Undergrad

Sample to Sequence

Sample to Sequence is an upper-level undergraduate laboratory-based course taught at HudsonAlpha. It introduces the excitement of scientific discovery as well as the practical challenges of applying DNA sequencing technology to address real-world questions.

Sample to Sequence is a three credit-hour course offered to students at The University of Alabama in Huntsville, Athens State University and Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University. Students work as part of a research team under direct supervision of seasoned instructors to define the metagenomic profile of environmental samples. Many of the critical skills commonly used in biotechnology are covered, including:

  • sampling and handling biological specimens
  • extracting, amplifying and sequencing DNA
  • utilizing bioinformatics databases to identify organisms on the basis of DNA sequence variation
  • linking DNA variation to biological diversity

The course is taught Fall and Spring semesters, and requires approximately 9 hours of laboratory work each week.

Now enrolling for Fall 2014 to Fall 2015. Interested students should contact Dr. Bob Zahorchak at

Biotechnology Degree at CCC

Biotechnology is a growing industry and in order to meet the demand of skilled workers, Calhoun Community College partnered with HudsonAlpha in 2007 to establish Alabama’s first associate biotechnology degree program. The degree requires 64-65 credit hours and consists of biology and chemistry related general education courses and also courses focused directly on biotechnology. Since then, many biotechnology graduates have interned at the Institute and even landed full time jobs.