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BCTC Student Earns First Place Win in Science Competition

LEXINGTON, Ky. (November 15, 2011) James Wesley (Wes) Morris, a sophomore in the biotechnology program at Bluegrass Community and Technical College (BCTC), was the first place winner in the microbiology division at the Kentucky Academy of Science 97th annual meeting held November 4-5.

Of the more than 100 undergraduate students from across Kentucky competing at the meeting, Wes was the only student representing the Kentucky Community amp; Technical College System (KCTCS).

His winning presentation was supported by a BCTC Transformation Grant. Natural Sciences Division Associate Professor Dr. Norman Strobel and Instructional Specialist Larry Porter received the grant to further their mentoring of student research.

Wes is a great ambassador for our colleges science education programs, said Dr. Strobel. He has tremendous promise for a successful scientific career. His great curiosity and sense of personal responsibility have given him the initiative to pursue extra-curricular opportunities at BCTC which will help accelerate his future goals.

In addition to his win at the Kentucky Academy of Science meeting, Wes recently presented at the National Science Foundation Academic Technical Education (ATE) conference in Washington, D.C. He was one of only 50 students nationwide invited to attend the conference.

In January 2012, Wes has been invited to present at the prestigious Posters-at-the-Capitol in Frankfort, Ky. Posters-at-the-Capitol is intended to help members of Kentuckys legislature and the governor better understand the importance of involving undergraduates in research, scholarly and creative work.

Wes will graduate from BCTC in 2012 with an associate of applied science in Environmental Science Technology, associate of applied science in Biotechnology, and anassociate of science degree. His future plans include working toward his bachelors degree at the University of Kentucky and then pursuing his graduate studies in a related field.