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how to start in microbiology


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#1 redline5711

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 06:57 AM

Hello,
I am currently enlisted in the Marine Corps and very interested in studies with microbiology. My current job is Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Defense. I have a very basic understanding of Biological warfare and defense, but am becoming increasingly more interested everyday. I plan to begin studies into microbiology upon my return from Iraq later this year, but am wondering if there are any books that i may be able to read to help me begin learning now. Im really not sure what area i want to focus in, however i am very interested in Filoviruses. Can anyone give me some advice as to what programs i should start with. I will be located in the North Carolina area for schools, around Cherry Point which doesnt give me many options. Any advice or help would be greatly appreciated to help me on my path to doing biological defense work, as well as my path through the military. I also realize that for more indepth work into the subject, while staying in the military, i will need to transfer into the Army, as they have a larger Biological program, so if anyone here knows anything about those programs i would be greatly interested in them. Thank you for any help.

#2 pito

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 07:20 AM

Hello,
I am currently enlisted in the Marine Corps and very interested in studies with microbiology. My current job is Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Defense. I have a very basic understanding of Biological warfare and defense, but am becoming increasingly more interested everyday. I plan to begin studies into microbiology upon my return from Iraq later this year, but am wondering if there are any books that i may be able to read to help me begin learning now. Im really not sure what area i want to focus in, however i am very interested in Filoviruses. Can anyone give me some advice as to what programs i should start with. I will be located in the North Carolina area for schools, around Cherry Point which doesnt give me many options. Any advice or help would be greatly appreciated to help me on my path to doing biological defense work, as well as my path through the military. I also realize that for more indepth work into the subject, while staying in the military, i will need to transfer into the Army, as they have a larger Biological program, so if anyone here knows anything about those programs i would be greatly interested in them. Thank you for any help.


You are going to stay in the army (or marines, I suppose you can follow the same things as army soldiers?) and try to study? Is this even possible ?
You are going to follow some homeschooling then or?
I have no idea how that system really works, but it seems strange to study something and still be an active soldier.
Doenst the usa army have some database with courses you can follow in home schooling? or a list with universities you can attain? Or dont they have progrems for people like you yo study biological warfare or something? however I can imagine you need some basic college degree first?

I can imagine you can follow some basic, theoreticly courses and get some certificate then that you passed it.
But really get a degree in it or become some sort of specialist?

I do wonder if it is even possible to attain a certain level in education if you can not become a full 100% student. Especially in science where you need to follow some practical lessons etc..


There are some good, free microbiology books online but you have so many of them that it is hard to give one that is really the best.



you say you want to study Filoviruses , but do you have any basic knowledge on viruses itself?

I have the following books that I can give you: Filoviruses: A Compendium of 40 Years of Epidemiological, Clinical, and Laboratory Studies

or viruses and humane disease.

or Virus Structure and Assembly (Advances in Virus Research

or Origin and Evolution of Viruses


But I wonder what you can do with it.


I am really curious about what you really can do , while staying in the army and what you really want to do: stay a soldier or become a microbiologist or something like that.

I do wonder: if you stay in the army, wont you be deployed many times or have to move etc?

Edited by pito, 26 March 2009 - 07:37 AM.

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some then not ask and stay stupid.

#3 redline5711

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 08:44 AM

When i say "studies" i mean that i am going to begin taking college courses. Being in the military gives me access to take college courses that will be payed for by the government. i plan to use this to obtain a degree in biology, however i talked to a local college here and was told i can take their biology course and focus in microbiology. The Army (which im not part of) has a much broader program for Biological Defense then the Marine Corps does(which i am part of). What im most interested in is Biological Defense, but from articles i have read before online and talking to 2 college professors in my home town, the only way for me to really get involved with this, is to have a degree in microbiology.

My knowledge on viruses is very little to this point, mainly about their history, like ebola, Bolivian hemorrhagic fever (Machupo), MHF. and also their effects on the body and symptoms. To this point i have only been reading books about Biological Warfare as it pertains to the history of my current job and why they have this field in the military. Where my knowledge is strongest at is calculating the widespread effect of a chemical or biological attack, given the method of delivery, chemical/biological agent used, wind reports, height at which it was released, ect.

What would be the best route for me to take if i want to pursue my career in either Biological Defense or in microbiology? As i am still unclear as to wether i will be leaving the military or not.

thank you for the advice.

#4 HomeBrew

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 04:22 AM

Hello redline5711 --

I pursued a similar path when I was in the Navy as a Hospital Corpsman with the FMF (2nd Med Bn) out of Camp Lejeune. When I was there (mid-80's), East Carolina University offered an off-campus extension school, and I attended it while on active duty. There were no microbiology or "hard" science courses offered, but I was able to complete several courses in English, Sociology, Psychology, and the like, the credits for which all transferred when I ultimately left active duty to go to college, and gave me a big jump on completing my degree because I had completed many of the electives required.

BTW, there wasn't much credit available for military service, contrary to what we were led to believe at the time. I had completed Hospital Corps school, Field Medical Service school, the Disease Vector Ecology & Control course out of Jacksonville, Florida, and several medically-related correspondence courses, but in total they weren't worth much in college credits.

You might be able to pursue a microbiology career without jumping services -- the Navy has several branches that study such things. See, for example, the Office of Naval Research and the Navy's Medical Service Corps Carrers in Microbiology.

As I mentioned above, there are several military correspondence courses available to you related to microbiology, see your educational officer of talk to Doc to find a list.

Pursue this. Good luck, Marine!

HMCS HomeBrew

#5 pito

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 10:48 AM

When i say "studies" i mean that i am going to begin taking college courses. Being in the military gives me access to take college courses that will be payed for by the government. i plan to use this to obtain a degree in biology, however i talked to a local college here and was told i can take their biology course and focus in microbiology. The Army (which im not part of) has a much broader program for Biological Defense then the Marine Corps does(which i am part of). What im most interested in is Biological Defense, but from articles i have read before online and talking to 2 college professors in my home town, the only way for me to really get involved with this, is to have a degree in microbiology.

My knowledge on viruses is very little to this point, mainly about their history, like ebola, Bolivian hemorrhagic fever (Machupo), MHF. and also their effects on the body and symptoms. To this point i have only been reading books about Biological Warfare as it pertains to the history of my current job and why they have this field in the military. Where my knowledge is strongest at is calculating the widespread effect of a chemical or biological attack, given the method of delivery, chemical/biological agent used, wind reports, height at which it was released, ect.

What would be the best route for me to take if i want to pursue my career in either Biological Defense or in microbiology? As i am still unclear as to wether i will be leaving the military or not.

thank you for the advice.



If you really want to become a microbiologist or work in that branche, then yeah: the profs are right... you really need to become a full time student and get your degree... at least thats what I think.

If you want to stay in the marines then the only options are like homebrew said: follow some basic courses... but they will never give you enough satisfaction on the microbiology side.



You might wanne do the following: stay in the marines for maybe 1 or 2 more years but when doing so: start following some courses, college courses and see if you like it. Are you capable of learning, do you "like" it...
(remember: you cant compare the basic courses with the things you like... I really disliked the "general" courses I had to follow like electrical crap, construction, and other basic crap , but I liked the specific courses like microbiology etc...)


If so: then quit the marines and become a full time student and get your microbiology degree

If you think: nha, I like the marines too much and dont wanne study a lot; then stay...




I dont know how the us system works, but in my country the army- specialists on chemical and biological warfare etc... are ALWAYS officers (they have allready a master degree in military science or polytechnics, you need a master degree to become an officer) and then they got a second degree in biology, microbiology to become specialists... or you have civilians who are experts on the subject who then work toghether with the army.. but they stay civilians.




==> silly questions but heck: 1. you are still in iraq now? you got good internet connection etc then?
2. arent there any marines, army personel that might help you? Cant you contact a military base that is working in the field you want to start working in? They might be able to help you more ?
3. wich is the most important question for yourself: A. do I want to stay in the marines, army or not or B. do I really want to become a microbiologist.



PS. I can still send you one of those books, and maybe you can start reading in it and see if you like it or not..

Edited by pito, 27 March 2009 - 10:54 AM.

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some then not ask and stay stupid.




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