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New Animal Science Degree Begins at NMJC

7/14/2017 11:42:46 a.m. - Hobbs, NM.  

Students who have a passion working with animals can now major in that field with an Associate of Applied Science in Animal Science degree, a new program starting this Fall at New Mexico Junior College. Dr. Shanna LaCount, who earned her Bachelors in Animal Science at NMSU, and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Colorado State University, will direct the program.

“We wanted to expand the Equine program to include all animals, especially as it relates to food animals,” said LaCount. “Students will learn how to raise healthy livestock, nutrition, anatomy, breeding and how to manage a business in this field. A student will gain greater knowledge and skills to work their ranch, begin a job in the animal husbandry business, or continue their education at a four-year university with transferrable credits from NMJC.”

There are over 500 career opportunities with a major in animal science that graduates will be qualified for, including industrial research in the food and feed industries, laboratory research programs with governmental and international agencies, private corporations, academic teaching and research, along with working at feed manufacturers, animal breeding companies, pharmaceutical companies, consulting firms and much more.

“We have a fully-functional facility at NMJC complete with horse and cattle handling facilities, and a newly constructed classroom,” said LaCount. “The courses will be a mixture of classroom and online classes. A core science curriculum is included with an emphasis in animal science.”

 LaCount states that animal science is usually a division of the agriculture department at most universities. “Having quality food products as it relates to dairy, beef cattle, pork, chicken and other livestock is a major area we will teach. Students will learn to be qualified, skilled people in the animal industry, to help ensure our livestock are healthy and productive.”

Students wishing to learn more about the animal science degree at NMJC can contact Dr. LaCount at 575-492-4715 or email:

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