South Dakota Tech News
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Phone: (605) 394-6082/2554 • Fax: (605) 394-6177
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 19, 2005
Contact: Steve Buchholz, Public Information Manager, 394-6082
South Dakota Tech Revamps IS Degree
South Dakota Tech has realigned its Interdisciplinary Sciences degree so students can focus in one of four areas to prepare for a career.
The South Dakota Board of Regents approved the changes this week. The changes go into effect for the spring 2005 semester.
“South Dakota Tech’s central mission is to provide an outstanding undergraduate education in science and engineering,” Dr. Sue Shirley, dean of the College of Interdisciplinary Studies, said. “We believe that we can more clearly align the Interdisciplinary Sciences degree with the stated mission of the university and provide students with a more competitive, more marketable degree by focusing the degree in specific areas.”
The four specializations are:
Atmospheric Science — Designed for students preparing for careers in weather forecasting or meteorology or for additional graduate study in atmospheric science or environmental studies.
Pre-Professional Health Sciences — Designed for students preparing to enter medical or dental school, or programs in physical or occupational therapy, chiropractics, optometry, physician assistantships, radiography or medical technology.
Business Applications in Science and Technology — Designed for students interested in the application of business administration or entrepreneurial studies to science and technology endeavors.
Science, Technology, and Society �� Designed for students preparing for careers in law (with a science/technology emphasis), science and environmental policy, public policy or public health policy.
All four specializations provide an I.S. student with a stronger science curriculum. “One advantage of the change is that every graduate’s transcript will list the specialization,” Shirley said. “That will make it easier for prospective employers and graduate and professional schools to determine each student’s specific area of study.
“The specializations will also help students plan their course of study more effectively,” she said. “The specializations will make it more advantageous for students to pursue a minor in another science area, such as atmospheric science, biology, computer science, geology, math, occupational safety or physics.”
Juniors and seniors currently enrolled in the IS program will be allowed to finish their program of study, but they also have the option of completing requirements for a specialization. Transfer students, freshmen, and sophomores will work with advisors to select the most appropriate specialization for their career goals.
Tech is forming collaborations with other institutions to enrich the program. Students pursuing the Business Applications in Science and Technology specialization will complete a Black Hills State University minor in either business administration or entrepreneurial studies as part of their degree program.
Tech also has started conversations with faculty and administrators in the University of South Dakota health sciences programs (medical school, physical therapy, occupational therapy, public health administration) to explore ways Tech students can benefit from USD expertise in these fields.
Students will be encouraged to identify internships and other service-learning opportunities and to pursue policy-related experiences such as serving as congressional aides.
“We see this change as a great opportunity for current and future Interdisciplinary Sciences students to leave South Dakota Tech with a degree that prepares them for careers that are important to our community and society,” Shirley said.
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Devereaux Library. South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.