New degree program at Texas State University a first of its kind


SAN MARCOS, Texas (KXAN) — According to the US Bureau of labor and statistics – civil engineers will be in demand in a matter of years – specifically, there will be a 27 percent jump in demand by 2022.

Good thing for civil engineers and aspiring ones, and especially good for Texas State University.

TXST announced it will roll out a new, one-of-a-kind civil engineering program that blends technology with traditional civil engineering methods and teachings.

“It can be a roadway, it can be a building, it can be a bridge, a water treatment plant. We are looking at ways to have it designed and constructed more effectively, more efficiently, better use of materials – manage its life cycle so that it lasts much longer with less need for repair and be proactive in repairs,” says Dr. John Schemmel, Texas State Engineering Professor.

“Our research is going on technology — not on the structural component. Where some universities will look at how strong a beam is, we are going to investigate how to monitor the performance of the beam, what do we do with that data once we collect it, how can we better collect the data from a beam.”

Texas State was a solid choice for the program due to its accessibility to ever-growing San Antonio and Austin, and, as Dr. Schemmel explains, the carte blanche TXST offered.

“We were able to start from scratch, everything that we are doing is starting from scratch, so there were no established academic inertia that would make it difficult to implement something like this from the start.”

Not Harvard, Not Yale, Not Dartmouth, Not Rice, not UT, Note Texas A&M, or any other school can boast of this kind of program with the exception of two:

“There are only two institutions that at an undergraduate level have an academic program that is inclusive from Freshman to Senior year that covers technology in application infrastructure — that’s MIT and UC Berkley.”

The new degree program aims to have 500 students enrolled in about five years.

Classes start this fall.

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