Entomology offers new Graduate Certificate

Entomology offers new Graduate Certificate

Jody Green displays Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches during an Extension event. The new graduate certificate in Entomology allows students to advance their careers in areas such as Extension, pest control, military, etc.

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

A new graduate certificate for Entomology academics, professionals, and enthusiasts was approved by the University of Nebraska Board of Regents at the end of June. This new certificate is available to online and on-campus students and may be earned by successfully taking 15 credits. The department is accepting certificate applications for the fall 2023 term.

Dr. Tom Weissling"The graduate certificate is designed to familiarize students with entomology and the importance of insects in the ecosystem and for human resilience," said Dr. Tom Weissling, chair of the Entomology graduate committee. Weissling will serve on the certificate advisory committee with Dr. John Ruberson and Graduate Lecturer Erin Bauer. 

“I often receive inquiries from potential students who want to dip their foot into entomology, but aren’t yet sure if they want to pursue a full Master’s degree,” said Bauer. “This certificate is a great option for these students. They can either stop with the certificate or use it as a launchpad to continue their training.”

Erin Bauer, online coordinator for Entomology Dept. Entomology faculty members believe that the graduate certificate will attract students who want to advance their careers in academia or industry, according to Weissling. Certificate graduates have the option to use their certificate as a springboard to a full master's degree. Those who complete the certificate for 15 credits would be halfway to earning an Entomology master's degree, which requires 30 credits.

The certificate may also interest others in the post-baccalaureate community, including people in the pest control industry, military, science teachers, lab technicians, extension agents, or conservation biologists. The online courses provide flexibility and opportunity for students to earn the certificate without leaving their jobs, communities, or families. On-campus students may want to build their credentials and enrich their insect training by pursuing this graduate certificate. The courses are available on campus, online, or as a hybrid of both. 

Students may be admitted to the certificate through the Office of Graduate Studies. Applicants should have a B.S. or B.A. degree from an accredited college or university - with a 3.0 grade point average on a 4.0 scale. Previous course work should include introductory entomology, general biology, chemistry, and mathematics. If students are missing any of the pre-requisites, they may complete them during their first year of the certificate. 

Application requirements include official transcripts from undergraduate and graduate institutions attended, three letters of recommendation, a letter of interest and goals in pursuing this certificate, English proficiency requirements, and a $50 application fee. All coursework must be completed within 5 years of starting the certificate program.

According to the Nebraska Department of Labor, entomology training is a valuable supplement for people employed in crop protection, human health, food processing, structural pest management (homes, businesses, educational facilities), environmental conservation, science education and beekeeping. Advanced credentials in Entomology can enhance professional development and advancement opportunity in these professional areas. 

The Department of Entomology has been a part of UNL since 1895, according to Dr. John Ruberson, Entomology Department Head. Entomology is a diverse science that interfaces with many other fields, he said. Ruberson explained that students have opportunities for broad education and experiences, and can take their training into a variety of professional directions to impact the world.

Apply at the UNL Office of Graduate Studies.