Commerce, TX – Governor Rick Perry, in his recent State of the State address, recognized Texas A&M University-Commerce and President Dan R. Jones for pioneering efforts to create a Bachelor’s degree costing approximately $10,000—significantly less than most undergraduate degrees.
Dr. Mary Hendrix, Vice President of Student Access and Success and the administrator leading the development of the degree said, “Competency-based education best serves adult learners who have significant life experiences. Because many prospective students may be serving in the military and/or are balancing their careers with family responsibilities, online, self-paced, and asynchronous options are best to meet their needs for access to higher education. Competency-based delivery allows institutions to reduce costs and accelerate students’ completion of baccalaureate degrees.”
Governor Perry issued the $10,000 degree challenge to Texas universities in response to the rapidly increasing cost of higher education. Stipulations indicate that this challenge should not result in “watered down” degrees, but it is imperative that programs should maintain academic rigor and relevance to their field.
“This degree program will be rigorous; faculty from both institutions and business and industry representatives have been working on the competencies, outcomes, and assessment methods since early fall,” said Dr. Hendrix.
President Jones, in a recent address to A&M-Commerce faculty and staff, said, “We are producing—due largely to the creativity and efforts of a group of farsighted faculty members—one of the most innovative models for delivering the $10,000 degree.”
About Texas A&M University-Commerce: Founded in 1889, Texas A&M University-Commerce is a member of The Texas A&M University System. Located in Northeast Texas, A&M-Commerce is home to more than 11,000 students, four academic colleges, a thriving graduate school, and more than 100 degree programs. As the region’s focal point of higher education, A&M-Commerce offers students facilities ranging from a world-class science building and new student center, to a fully equipped recreational facility and recently completed music hall. The university also has convenient facilities in Corsicana, Midlothian, McKinney, Mesquite, Rockwall and downtown Dallas.
About The Texas A&M University System: The A&M System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $3.3 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, seven state agencies and a comprehensive health science center, the A&M System educates more than 120,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. Externally funded research expenditures exceed $730 million and help drive the state’s economy.