Idaho State University and South Dakota State University agreement will expedite degree programs

A new agreement between Idaho State University and South Dakota State University will help students earn a bachelor’s degree in physics and a master’s degree in nuclear engineering in five years instead of six.

Students would spend their first three years in South Dakota, followed by another two years at ISU to receive a master’s degree in nuclear engineering, according to Laura Woodworth-Ney, provost and vice president of ISU.

The reduced time will be possible because students will be able to apply credits earned during graduate studies to their undergraduate programs.

The agreement is still being reviewed by school officials at SDSU and spokesman Matt Schmidt has said there is no timeline on when it might be approved, according to the Associated Press. ISU and the Idaho State Board of Education are both in support of the plan.

No extra costs are expected to be incurred with the implementation of the plan, as expenses would be covered through participating students’ tuition.

The proposed agreement comes after business and government officials with Idaho’s STEM Action Center began brainstorming ideas to increase the number of students choosing to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math earlier this year.