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TTU Graduate Program Growth Fueled by Pandemic

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
TTU Graduate Program Growth Fueled by Pandemic

Tennessee Tech’s graduate program applications increase by 61 percent since 2019.

College of Graduate Studies Dean Mark Stephens said the biggest increase has been in the Colleges of Education and Business. Stephens said the increase in the last year has been fueled by pandemic and its economic effects.

“When the economy turns down and unemployment starts to rise,” Stephens said. “People begin to look around and think about either changing jobs or careers, or trying to move up in their organization.”

Stephens said the continued growth in applications has led to a new Doctor of Nursing Practice Program, a Psychology PH.D. program and the newly approved Masters of Science in Human Ecology program. Despite the pandemic increasing applications, Tech has been working to provide more options over the past few years.

“We’ve had initiatives over the last several years,” Stephens said. “At least over the last five of six years.”

Stephens said the benefits of a growing graduate program extends past the campus. Whether it be through creating new skills or building on a students educational foundation.

“It’s very beneficial for the region in that it provides individuals who become qualified to teach,” Stephens said. “For example, at community colleges or undergraduate at Tech, it’s beneficial to the whole region.”

Stephens said all but two graduate programs saw increases since 2019. Stephens said Tech’s College of Education saw the most growth in applicants.



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