MOSES LAKE — Big Bend Community College students might be able to get a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in applied management, starting in the fall of 2021. The State Board of Community and Technical Colleges recently voted to allow the college to continue working on the degree program.
“The applied bachelor’s degree will be the first one offered by the college,” wrote director of communications Matt Killebrew.
College officials sent a survey to local employers in summer 2018, asking whether or not local businesses would be interested in bachelor degree programs offered through the college. Big Bend officials “began to recognize a need for management training and education. Feedback from current and former students showed a similar slant.”
Earlier this year college trustees approved a request from BBCC officials to work on establishing an applied management bachelor’s program. The college requested approval to pursue the program, which the SBCTC granted last week.
“The new bachelor’s degree will meet the needs of local employers for education job applicants and the needs of our students for a local bachelor’s degree option,” said Bryce Humpherys, BBCC vice president of learning and student success.
Some students in the Big Bend college district can’t afford to travel out of the area to pursue continuing education, Humpherys said. “The new BAS will help to remove that barrier for local students interested in earning a four-year degree,” Killebrew wrote, building an “educated applicant pool” for local businesses. “Employers have expressed concerns about their ability to locally recruit and retain qualified supervisors and managers,” Humpherys said.
“Both current and former students showed an interest in pursuing the new degree,” Humpherys said.
Big Bend faculty will be asked to design a BAS program proposal, which will be submitted to the SBCTC in summer 2020. The proposal could be approved by October 2020, with the program open to students by fall 2021.
Cheryl Schweizer can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.