The biofuels program at SIC doesn’t often have many traditional students. While some high school juniors have done well taking the courses for college credit, most students are non-traditional and have advanced degrees and experience working in the industry.
Christine Brockinton and Ellie Antova are two such students, and are part of the 54 who have completed courses or earned a certificate since the program started.
Brockinton completed 12 credit hours towards a certificate in Biofuels Technology and Sustainability from Southeastern Illinois College in December 2014, and is currently working for Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy LLC. Her position at SIRE is scale operator, thanks to the knowledge she gained at Southeastern Illinois College.
“Those in the field have shown appreciation for the course and many keep in touch to discuss technological and regulatory changes,” Loesche said.
The biofuels certificate is offered completely online and provides a baseline of information about the spectrum of the industry. Most students have advanced degrees and work in the industry. The certificate is made up of four courses. It can be completed in nine months, although the college is working to reduce that to six months.