HARRISBURG, Pa. – As the Commonwealth’s economy and workforce needs evolve and move into new and emerging fields, Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education is moving forward right along with them.
The State System’s Board of Governors today approved 16 new degree programs, many of which were developed with direct input from industry partners, to help ensure employers have the educated workforce they need in the future and that graduates will have the education and skills necessary to succeed.
The new programs, ranging from the bachelor’s level to advanced doctoral degrees, cover a wide variety of fields, including education, data analytics, graphic and digital design, legal studies, engineering, healthcare and the arts. Several of the new programs will be offered online, where they will be available to students virtually anywhere, anytime.
The universities within the State System have been carefully examining their program offerings to ensure they align with Commonwealth needs.
“Today’s action demonstrates the universities’ commitment to serving the needs of their students and the Commonwealth,” said Board of Governors’ Chairman Guido M. Pichini. “It also shows their ability to adapt and evolve as those needs change.”
The new programs approved today are:
• Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in supply chain management at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania (Fall 2015)
• Doctor of Health Science in health science and exercise leadership at California University of Pennsylvania (Spring 2016)
• Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in paralegal studies at Clarion University of Pennsylvania (Fall 2015)
• Bachelor of Science in sport management at Clarion University (Fall 2015)
• Master of Science in applied data analytics at Clarion University (Fall 2015)
• Bachelor of Fine Arts in applied digital arts at Kutztown University of Pennsylvania (Fall 2016)
• Master of Arts in arts administration Kutztown University (Fall 2016)
• Master of Education in music education at Kutztown University (Fall 2016)
• Master of Science in actuarial science at Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania (Fall 2016)
• Bachelor of Design in interactive and graphic design at Millersville University of Pennsylvania (Fall 2015)
• Master of Education in assessment, curriculum, and teaching with concentrations in online teaching and in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education at Millersville University (Fall 2015)
• Bachelor of Science in petroleum and natural gas engineering at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania (Fall 2016)
• Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance at Slippery Rock University (Fall 2016)
• Master of Science in data analytics at Slippery Rock University (Spring 2016)
• Master of Science in clinical mental health counseling at West Chester University of Pennsylvania (Summer 2016)
• Doctor of Education in education policy, planning, and administration at West Chester University of Pennsylvania (May 2016)
(Note: For more information on each of the programs, please see the following page, or contact the respective university.)
Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education is the largest provider of higher education in the Commonwealth, with about 110,000 degree-seeking students and thousands more who are enrolled in certificate and other career-development programs. Collectively, the 14 universities that comprise the State System offer more than 2,300 degree and certificate programs in more than 530 academic areas. Nearly 520,000 State System university alumni live in Pennsylvania.
The State System universities are Bloomsburg, California, Cheyney, Clarion, East Stroudsburg, Edinboro, Indiana, Kutztown, Lock Haven, Mansfield, Millersville, Shippensburg, Slippery Rock and West Chester Universities of Pennsylvania. The universities also operate branch campuses in Oil City (Clarion), Freeport and Punxsutawney (IUP), and Clearfield (Lock Haven), and offer classes and programs at several regional centers, including the Dixon University Center in Harrisburg and in Center City in Philadelphia.
Newly approved academic programs
The Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in supply chain management degree will prepare graduates to serve as project managers, process schedulers, supply chain analysts, distribution managers, purchasers and customer relationship specialists in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, retail, healthcare, banking and logistics. Employment demand in the field is projected to grow by nearly 30 percent in Pennsylvania and the United States over the next decade.
The Doctor of Health Science in health science and exercise leadership degree is designed for working professionals seeking career advancement and will be offered completely online. It will enable graduates to work as advanced clinical practitioners; educators in health, exercise and wellness; administrators and managers of health-related enterprises; and in other advanced professional or technical positions in the continually growing healthcare field.
The Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in paralegal studies degree is designed to provide paralegals not only with a broad legal background, but also with the knowledge of accounting, budgeting, personnel and administration necessary to manage paralegal departments with law firms and business organizations, including corporate law departments, insurance companies, estate and trust departments of large banks, hospitals and healthcare organizations, real estate and title insurance companies and professional trade associations.
The Bachelor of Science in sport management will prepare graduates for jobs in fields such as sports marketing, sports sales, coaching and scouting, all of which are growing. Clarion currently offers a concentration in sport management as part of its liberal studies degree. The new degree includes a required 12-credit internship designed to provide students with real experience and the opportunity to practice what they have learned, to develop new skills and to make professional contacts and networks that could help them in their pursuit of employment after graduation.
The Master of Science in applied data analytics, which will be offered online, will prepare graduates to work in areas including finance, marketing, retail, manufacturing, insurance, government, politics, education, security, science, e-commerce, social media or other areas that consume large amounts of data. Their skill base will include database development, data processing, warehousing, mining and visualization to solve big data problems. Graduates of the program will be prepared to sit for the Certified Data Management Exams offered by the Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals.
The Bachelor of Fine Arts in applied digital arts degree will prepare students to work in the creative fields of animation, game art and interactive media. The digital arts field is growing rapidly, with digital artists often finding work in the contemporary fields of game art, interactive media, animation, multimedia art, computer graphics, sound design, movies, television and video art. The new program will build upon KU’s already successful offerings in studio art, crafts and communication design.
The Master of Arts in arts administration degree program will prepare graduates with the tools needed to work in an administrative capacity at a wide variety of arts and cultural organizations, including museums, concert venues, foundations, galleries, symphony orchestras and arts councils. Coursework will include issues and trends, arts policy and legal issues, marketing and communications, fundraising, budgeting, organizational leadership and grant writing.
The Master of Education in music education is designed specifically for working professionals and will be offered fully online. Graduates will be prepared to work as advanced practitioners and leaders of music education in K-12 schools, as well as in after-school programs, community music centers, arts venues, private music studios and in higher education.
The Master of Science in actuarial science degree will prepare graduates to work as professional actuaries in the business and government sectors. The university will seek to have the program, which will be offered fully online, designated as a Professional Science Master’s degree. It would be the only online actuarial degree program in the nation with the PSM designation. It will be available to students who already hold a bachelor’s degree or as a 3+2 program, where undergraduates would complete three years majoring in mathematics or an approved related field, and then apply to the program for the final two years of study.
The Bachelor of Design in interactive and graphic design degree program will prepare students for careers in areas including interactive design, web design, corporate communications, digital illustration, mass media design, advertising, public relations, marketing, digital publishing, audio-visual publishing, animation, branding, physical computing design, print design and digital packaging design. All of the courses with the new degree program were developed over the last few years and represent the latest skills and use of technology.
The Master of Education in assessment, curriculum, and teaching includes two concentrations, one in online teaching and one in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education, designed to advance the effectiveness of teachers in these high-demand areas. Students who enroll in the program must be full-time teachers or have Instructional 1 certification and will participate in field-based experiences within their concentration.
The Bachelor of Science in petroleum and natural gas engineering degree program will provide students with hands-on, in-depth learning experiences in areas including the exploration, production and transportation of oil and natural gas resources using safe and environmentally friendlier methods. It will provide graduates with the knowledge and capabilities required to successfully practice as petroleum and natural gas engineers and/or to continue their education at the graduate level. Slippery Rock currently offers a pre-engineering program, in which students are typically enrolled for three years, then transfer to another institution for two additional years to complete their degree. The new program is designed to be completed in four years, with all courses to be taught at SRU.
The Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance is designed specifically for students seeking multilayered careers as dance professionals and will provide students with the advanced training needed to pursue performing, choreography, technology and teaching careers in dance. The university also will continue to offer a Bachelor of Arts in dance. The BFA will enable students to achieve professional level mastery of dance while the BA degree provides a broad-based curriculum in dance studies and an opportunity to earn a second major in other content areas, such as exercise science and education.
The Master of Science in data analytics will be offered in both full-time and part-time models to accommodate working professionals. It is designed to prepare graduates to work in the rapidly growing field of data analytics and big data. Students who complete the program will receive a joint certificate in statistical applications and data analytics from Slippery Rock and SAS Institute. SAS is one of the most widely used software platforms in the world for performing data analytics and statistical analysis.
The Master of Science in clinical mental health counseling is a 60-credit degree program specifically designed to meet all of the current standards for accreditation by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs, as well as the educational requirements for counselor licensure in all 50 states. It will prepare students for a broad range of career possibilities, including working in community settings, hospitals, educational institutions, Veteran’s Administration treatment centers and private practice.
The Doctor of Education in education policy, planning, and administration will prepare regional professionals in proposing evidence-based solutions that will help improve the practice of education and the lives of students in the Commonwealth. It will provide educators in a variety of educational settings the skills necessary to identify site-specific problems and develop site-specific solutions. As part of the program, degree candidates will participate in a research project with an outside agency/constituent such as a partner school district, preschool partner, rehabilitation center or academic tutoring center.