Feb 05, 2013


Students, faculty, and the community attended a lecture at Columbia State Community College, hosted by the Lyceum Committee and Assistant Professor of Agriculture and Horticulture, Dearl Lampley titled "Biotechnology in Agriculture" on Tuesday, March 23. The lecture focused on the use of genetic modification in crop production today.

"Advances have been tremendous in the last few years to accommodate accelerated population growth as well as reduced land available for crops," said Glenn Hudson, Assistant Professor of Mathematics at Columbia State. "This was a particularly important event for students who may be contemplating or who are actually involved in pursuit of agronomy careers. " Agronomy is the study of plants and agriculture.

During the lecture, Mike Hughes, an agronomy research manager with Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc provided a discussion on the efforts of institutions to produce high volume, high quality, nutritious food and plants.

"Such efforts have become increasingly important as world-wide populations expand," said Hudson. "It was a very interesting and informative discussion."

Hughes, a graduate of New Mexico State University discussed the benefits of genetically modified plants and how they result in increased efficiency for food and plant production and increased efficiency to resist diseases, insects, and drought, increased vitamin content, and better applications in industrial and pharmaceutical terms.

"Mr. Hughes provided unique and educational information about genetic splicing of plant genes. It was an eye opening experience to see how food crops are genetically modified to increase the yield that we eat," said Hudson.

Columbia State is a two-year college, serving a nine-county area in southern Middle Tennessee with locations in Columbia, Franklin, Lawrenceburg, Lewisburg and Clifton. As Tennessee's first community college, Columbia State is committed to increasing access and enhancing diversity at all five campuses. Columbia State is a member of the Tennessee Board of Regents, the sixth largest higher education system in the nation. For more information, visit www.ColumbiaState.edu.