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UT Tyler, Sam Houston State University Enter Partnership, Enhance Pathways to 4-Year Engineering Degrees

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August 18, 2015

Media Contact:  Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.565.5769 or 903.539.7196 (cell)

August 18, 2015

The University of Texas at Tyler and Sam Houston State University have entered a partnership to offer an effective pathway for students at Sam Houston to earn a four-year degree in selected fields of engineering, Dr. Amir Mirmiran, UT Tyler provost and vice president for academic affairs, announced.

With this partnership, SHSU and UT Tyler create a seamless transition from lower-level coursework to completion of their baccalaureate degree in civil, electrical or mechanical engineering. The participating students will begin their engineering study at Sam Houston in Huntsville, and they will then complete their study at UT Tyler – through course offerings either at the main campus in Tyler or the UT Tyler Houston Engineering Center.

“There is a critical need in our nation and in the local area for well-trained engineers, and we are glad to launch such a win-win collaboration to help prepare graduates for these important and lucrative careers,” Mirmiran said.

UT Tyler opened the Houston Engineering Center in Fall 2013 to provide better access to engineering education for students in and around the greater Houston area.

“This partnership is a great example of the state’s universities working collaboratively to contain the cost of education and provide greater access to engineering for students,” UT Tyler President Rodney H. Mabry said.

The partnership also will provide an opportunity to increase the number of students enrolled at both institutions in an area of critical need for the state.

“Increasing the engineering enrollment for both institutions through a seamless pathway will allow both four-year institutions to supply Texas with its needed engineers, meeting the greater needs of the state at large,” said Dr. Jaimie Hebert, SHSU provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Several estimates indicate the State of Texas will need 80,000 more engineers by the year 2025 to support its increasing technical economy.

“As SHSU offers pre-engineering courses as part of its engineering technology degrees, this agreement will develop a seamless pathway for students who wish to complete a degree in civil, electrical or mechanical engineering at UT Tyler,” said Dr. John Pascarella, SHSU College of Sciences dean. “We also look forward to potential collaboration on research projects that could involve faculty from both institutions.”

Students also will benefit from the seamless pathway by being able to earn an engineering degree at a lower cost than other available options in the area, and by decreasing the time to an engineering degree than might otherwise occur when students transfer from one institution to another.

“The partnership is a benefit for both institutions – and especially for students,” said Dr. James Nelson, UT Tyler College of Engineering dean. “A key advantage for students will be in cost savings as a result of the partnership. Also, students find that an engineering degree generally pays off quickly, since the starting annual salary of many entry-level engineers is over $60,000.”

Sam Houston State University has been preparing students for meaningful lives of achievement for more than 130 years. The university offers more than 80 bachelor’s degree, 50 master’s degree and six doctoral programs, 20 of which are available entirely online. Its more than 19,000 students can take classes in nationally recognized programs in business, fine arts, education, mathematics and criminal justice at the main campus in Huntsville, the Woodlands Center location in The Woodlands, or the University Park location in Northwest Houston.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler features excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. More than 80 undergraduate and graduate degrees are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of more than 8,000 high-ability students. UT Tyler offers courses at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine as well as a location in Houston.

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