It’s never been easier to source sustainable seafood.

Aquaculture is defined simply as the farming and husbandry of aquatic organisms. In practice aquaculture or mariculture (saltwater aquaculture) involves commercially growing seafood for consumers. It also involves the sciences of natural resource management and enhancement, collection methods, aquarium technology, facility construction and maintenance, and biotechnology production from marine organisms.

Carteret CC offers the Aquaculture Technology program and emphasizes applied marine sciences and mariculture. Lecture courses are offered in the traditional classroom or as online courses, which use the Blackboard (an Internet portal with rich media content to enhance comprehension). The focus of the program is on salt-water species like oysters, clams, soft-shell crabs, and marine finfish like flounder, drum and bait minnows but some freshwater aquaculture species are also covered.

Students learn hands-on skills through the Aquaculture Practicum series. Skills such as water quality testing, system construction and maintenance, species collection methods and treatments, feeding and breeding technology are part of the practicums. Students also work with program partners in the industry in practicums and in the cooperative work experience course. Partners include university and government marine sciences laboratories, fishery management agencies, public aquariums, environmental non-governmental organizations, as well as commercial aquatic businesses. The Carteret CC facility is a 5,000 square ft. state-of-the-art showcase for applied marine science, aquatic hatchery and marine biotechnology work.

Graduates of the program may find employment on private farms and government hatcheries or at public aquariums. They may also start new businesses in fish, shellfish, or aquatic plant farming, aquatic management services, home/office aquarium or water gardening services.

Degree Completion Plans Download

University Transfer | Degree Completion Plan

View what classes you need and when you can take them to complete an Associate of Applied Science degree in Aquaculture Technology and transfer to UNC Wilmington or East Carolina University.

Degree Completion Plans Download

Work/Business Option | Degree Completion Plan

View what classes you need and when you can take them to complete an Associate of Applied Science degree in Aquaculture Technology and start working sooner.

Diploma Completion Plan PDF opens in new tab

Diploma Completion Plan

View what classes you need and when you can take them to complete a diploma in Aquaculture Technology.

The Aquaculture Technology Diploma is a full-time, one-year program that includes the courses in the certificate program plus additional course work in hatchery management and fish/shellfish propagation, design and construction of aquaculture facilities, an additional semester of practical applications, and a summer internship at an aquaculture facility. Some of the courses in this program are transferable to four-year colleges and universities. Graduates of the diploma program may continue their education in the Associate in Applied Science degree program, start their own fish or shellfish farm, or go to work as a technician at any of the many established Aquaculture operations in North Carolina or throughout the nation.

Certificate Completion Plans Download

Certificate Completion Plans

The Aquaculture Technology programs offers three (3) certificate opportunities. View what classes you need and when you can take them to complete a certificate in Aquaculture Technology.

  • Aquaculture Technology Certificate
  • Aquaculture Technology Online Certificate
  • Aquaculture Technology: Aquaponics
Transfer Options

Where Can I Transfer?

Looking to transfer to a university after you complete your degree at Carteret CC? Good news! Carteret CC has university transfer agreements for students who graduate with an Associate of Applied Science degree in Aquaculture Technology to:

East Carolina University
UNC Wilmington


P1: Nitrification Cycle
Nitrification and recirculation aquaculture systems: Students will demonstrate knowledge of “nitrification cycle” by performing analysis of nitrification cycle for a recirculation system and present results graphically.

P2: Troubleshooting
Practical troubleshooting and problem solving: Students will demonstrate ability to convert actual aquaculture problems to a series of mathematical calculations and compared with actual values.

P3: Water Quality Analysis
Proficiency in Water Quality Analysis: Students will demonstrate ability to test and analyze water samples. Water quality parameters must be tested using a variety of methods and equipment. Potential uses for and evaluation of the water will be addressed.

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