Our Primary Educational Mission is to serve as a resource for the education of UF undergraduate and graduate students and the public at large with regard to issues in genetics research. Education is of central importance to the UFGI mission. The specific educational goals of the UFGI span several levels as outlined below:
To develop courses to enhance the understanding and awareness of genetics among UF undergraduate students. The convergence of expertise in genetic and molecular biology from different units across campus presents us with a unique opportunity to provide UF undergraduates with a truly broad-based genetic education. This opportunity will enable graduates of UF to be informed citizens and potentially informed consumers of the products of biotechnology.
To promote interdisciplinary genetics programs and develop new courses for UF graduate students. Graduate teaching is a primary focus of the UFGI. Just as the nature of genetics research is interdisciplinary, so too must the graduate education programs of this institute cross traditional administrative boundaries. The UFGI will facilitate greater “cross-training” among the existing Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology Graduate Program from IFAS, the nascent Integrative Graduate Education and Research Training Program from the Engineering Research Center, and the Interdisciplinary Program for Graduate Education from the College of Medicine. New courses will be established within the areas of functional genomics, proteomics, and gene therapy. These will be made available to students in all the existing programs.
To facilitate the development of accredited residency programs in clinical genetics for physicians, scientists and genetic counselors within the College of Medicine. Residency training programs for these disciplines will be established in accordance with the guidelines of the American Board of Medical Genetics and the Residency Review Committee of the Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education.
To create appropriate forums for public education and discussion of genetics and biotechnology issues and their ethical implications. Integral to the operation of the UFGI will be a proposed Office for Community Education and Public Relations. This office will design interactive programs for the general public to educate and inform and to provide a forum for feedback. These interactive programs will include formal lectures, visits to local schools, and an internet website.