The Faculty Senate approved an expedited reading of the motion on Monday, Oct. 29, to take on full control and responsibility for the Master’s of English program. The motion had previously been approved by the
Curriculum and Academic Programs Board before appearing before the Faculty Senate, said Interim Provost Richard Kreminski.
Now that the internal approvals are completed, two external approvals are needed for the Master’s of English program to take effect. The program must be approved by the CSU-Pueblo Board of Governors and the Colorado Commission on Higher Education.
“I’m optimistic about the program being approved,” Kreminski said.
The goal of the university is to have the program completely under Pueblo’s control by the fall of 2013, said Cynthia Taylor, chair of the English department.
The Master’s of English program has been offered on CSU-Pueblo’s campus for seven years in conjunction with CSU-Fort Collins, Taylor said.
There are currently 34 people registered in the Master’s program, which has graduated 40 people since 2005, Taylor said.
When the program was proposed in 2004, there was the expectation that Pueblo would get its own program. However, the Colorado Commission on Higher Education was concerned about overlapping programs. If Pueblo could prove that it had a need and could get enough enrollments, the program would become Pueblo’s own eventually, Taylor said.
Taylor also pointed out that if there was no program here, the closest English Master’s program would be in Fort Collins, as there is no English Master’s program offered in Colorado Springs.
Having the Master’s of English program run through CSU-Pueblo’s campus will make the program much more efficient for the students, Taylor said.
Currently, students in the program must apply, get their thesis approved, and register through CSU- Fort Collins. Once the program is run through CSU-Pueblo, this double application process will no longer be necessary, Taylor said.
CSU-Pueblo’s control over its own Master’s program will make tuition cheaper for students in the program. The program will now be able to charge CSU-Pueblo’s resident graduate tuition rate nearly $235 per credit hour instead of CSU-Fort Collin’s resident graduate tuition rate of more than $466 per credit hour, according to the respective universities’ websites.
CSU-Pueblo will be affected because there will be less revenue due to lower tuition rates, but more revenue will be generated than if the program were dropped entirely, Taylor said.
“Our choices are either to have the graduate program, or not to have it. If it is not approved, the program will go away. I think the benefits far outweigh the cost,” Taylor said.
No classes which are currently available to students in the graduate English program will be added or dropped immediately following the change. However, some aspects may change over time because the program will have more flexibility once it comes under CSU-Pueblo’s exclusive control, Taylor said.
Faculty will remain largely unaffected once the new program is implemented, and will continue to teach the same courses which they taught previously. No new positions, facilities or faculty will be required, Taylor said.
“We all hope the graduate program gets approved,” Taylor said.