Adams State to create Office of Graduate Studies

(05-16-2016)

The Board of Trustees for Adams State University approved formation of an Office for Graduate Studies at its regular meeting on campus, May 13.

Adams State offers eleven graduate programs, with ten at the master's level and one at the doctorate level. The goal of the Office for Graduate Studies is to enhance support for graduate students both on-campus and at a distance, according to Margaret Doell, assistant vice president for Academic Affairs. She added the office will also serve and advocate for graduate programs across campus, in addition to establishing policies.

"This is part of us growing up as a university," said Adams State President Beverlee J. McClure. "We will have a one-stop for students, with standardized and streamlined admissions procedures. The office will give us greater capacity as we add graduate programs." Administration of graduate programs had become decentralized over the last five years, with each department managing those processes.

The university's graduate student enrollment has doubled in the last 16 years and now represents one-third of Adams State's total enrollment, according to Emeritus Professor of Counselor Education Dr. Teri McCartney. Having previously served as Adams State's Assistant Provost for Graduate Studies, she facilitated the Graduate Initiative Group that proposed the Office of Graduate Studies, along with external facilitator Sheila Trice Bell.

The Office of Graduate Studies will be partially funded through a tuition increase for online courses of $15 per credit hour. Twelve dollars of that fee will fund the Office of Graduate Studies; $3 will be earmarked for the Academic Instructional Technology Center (AITC), to offset rising expenses associated with growth in online graduate education. In addition, graduate programs will increase their contribution to the university's General Fund by .5 percent.

Doell said the office will eventually have three staff members, with the initial priority to conduct a search for an Assistant Vice President for Graduate Studies. Plans call for that position to be filled by September 1.

By Julie Waechter