UTPB offering $5,000 completion degree
Jan 22, 2013 (Odessa American - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
The University of Texas of the Permian Basin announced Tuesday morning that the university is offering all Texas residents a chance to earn a bachelor's degree for only $5,000.
The online only completion degree is being offered by the university to only Texas students who already hold an associate's degree in applied sciences. UTPB President David Watts said during a press conference at the CEED building the program was the university's continuous response to Gov. Rick Perry's call for more affordable degrees.
In May, UTPB was the first university in Texas to offer four-year degrees for $10,000 in the areas of geology, chemistry, computer science, information systems and math.
"We're trying to provide ... a real opportunity for folks to complete their education," Watts said.
Students would be able to access the lessons on their computers, and even their smart phones, to work on the lessons at their convenience, Watts said. Students would be able to ask questions regarding lessons through the school's Blackboard website or email professors.
Watts also stressed that the $5,000 is not per semester, but the cost for the two years to complete the courses at UTPB. Students currently attending classes at the university are currently paying, on average, $3,000 a semester, Watts said.
Raj Desai, chairman of the Engineering and Technology Programs, said the demand for online courses was high enough to implement the new program. Many of the 80 students who are already enrolled in the program were reported as being petroleum employees looking to advance their career.
"The purpose is to move these people ... into management positions," Desai said.
Also present at the news conference were Rex Peebles, vice president of Student Services, and Don Wood, vice-president for institutional effectiveness at Odessa College, who expressed how the service would benefit the students at the community colleges.
"Providing this opportunity for our students with an associate's degree ... is a big step forward," Wood said.
--Contact Nathaniel Miller on twitter at @OAgovernment, on Facebook at OA Nathaniel Miller or call 432-333-7769
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