If you are a farmer wanting to know about fish or shrimp farming, or a student interested in our Minor or Master’s programs,  we are interested in you.

Message from the Chair

Dr. Jim Tidwell pic

Dr. Jim Tidwell, Chair of the Division of Aquaculture

Hello, and thank you for checking out Kentucky State University’s Division of Aquaculture within the College of Agriculture, Food Science, and Sustainable Systems. If you are a farmer wanting to know about fish or shrimp farming, or a student interested in our academic programs or online courses, we are interested in you. Please let us know how we may assist you.

Dr. Jim Tidwell, Chair of the Division of Aquaculture


The Division of Aquaculture was initiated in the mid-1980’s. Originally it was exclusively dedicated to research and extension activities. However, in 1990 the first course was offered on an experimental basis. By 1992 an undergraduate minor in Aquaculture/Aquatic Science was first available, and in 1999 the Council on Post-Secondary Education approved KSU to offer a Master of Science Degree in Aquaculture/Aquatic Science.

Until the establishment of the College of Agriculture, Food Science and Sustainable Systems, the Division of Aquaculture was the only program at KSU that addressed all three of the traditional Land Grant university roles: research, teaching, and extension. The Division has class offerings over the full spectrum of aquaculture, including reproduction, nutrition, water quality, physiology, production systems, economics and marketing, and fish disease. The Division also offers online classes at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.


James H. Tidwell, Ph.D.
Division of Aquaculture
Aquaculture Research Center
103 Athletic Dr.
Frankfort, Ky. 40601

Division of Aquaculture

  • Aquaculture Production of Alternative Species and Aquaponics. Alternative aquaculture production for Kentucky  and the new methods of Aquaponics production.  James Tidwell Ph.D.- Professor (Research, Teaching, Administration, Aquaculture Chair), Shawn Coyle M.Sc., Research Associate (Research) and Leigh Bright B.Sc., Research Assistant (Research), and Janell Hagar M.Sc., Research Associate (Research).
  • Aquaculture Nutrition. Alternative feed sources for aquaculture production.  Vickas Kumar Ph.D.- Assistant Professor (Research, Teaching), Kenneth Johnson M.Sc., Research and Extension Associate (Research and Extension).
  • Disease Diagnostics and Water Quality. Disease detection of pathogens and the impact of water quality on  aquaculture species.  Robert Durborow Ph.D.- Professor (Extension, Research, Teaching).
  •  Aquaculture Genetics. Genetics and breeding of aquaculture species such as tilapia, crappie, and Koi.  Boris Gomelsky Ph.D.- Professor (Research, Teaching).
  • Aquaculture Production and Bio floc. Pacific white shrimp production in recirculating systems supported by bio floc.  Andrew Ray Ph.D.- Assistant Professor (Research, Teaching).
  •  Alternative Aquaculture Production Systems. Use of raceway and abandoned sewage plants for fish production systems.  Kenneth Semmens Ph.D.- Assistant Professor (Research, Teaching).
  •  Aquaculture Extension. Extension and outreach for Kentucky producers. Robert Wurts Ph.D.- State Extension Specialist in Princeton, Kentucky (Extension) and Forrest Wynne M.Sc., Extension Associate in Mayfield, Kentucky (Extension).
  • Aquaculture Economics and Marketing. Economics and marketing opportunities for agriculture and aquaculture in Kentucky. Siddhartha Dasgupta Ph.D.- Professor (Research, Extension, Teaching) andRichard Byant, B.Sc. Research Assistant (Research).
  • Aquaculture Support Personnel: Nathan CochranM.Sc., Distance Education & Online Programs (Teaching); Charles Weibel, Media,(Extension); Dan Yancy, Facility Manger; Carolyn Harris, Pauline Jackson, andKarla Johnson, Admin/Facility Support.