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March 18, 2013 - In another major step forward, Brevard Community College will offer students seven more Bachelor Degree tracks in 2014 in fields with strong job growth.
The degrees are in Management, Applied Health Sciences and Information Systems.
The BCC Board of Trustees approved the programs a their quarterly meeting Monday, ramping up the College’s expanded mission to provide students with four-year degrees that can lead to employment upon graduation.
“These new degrees are in career fields that have some of the fastest job growth in Brevard County and Central Florida,” said BCC President, Dr. Jim Richey.
“They will allow students to stay home to get the education they need at an affordable price. They will also give them a leg-up in the job market as the economy continues to improve and businesses seek more highly trained workers.”
The College approved its first two four-degrees last year and will unveil them in August with Bachelor’s Degrees in General Business Management and Health Care Management.
The launch of the degrees will correspond with BCC changing its name to Eastern Florida State College on July 1.
The additional degree tracks approved Monday are the result of research by College officials that involved studying high-wage, high-demand jobs in Central Florida, and surveying 112 companies in Brevard on their workforce needs.
They align with Associate’s Degrees now offered at the College in fields such as public safety, business, health care, technology and more.
That will make them a perfect fit for students currently enrolled at the College along with individuals in the workforce who want to advance their education to boost their careers.
The new program specializations, which start in August 2014, are:
Coursework will be offered in flexible formats, including online and day and night classes. The degrees will also be affordable, costing considerably less than comparable degrees at other local colleges or universities.
In fact, the Health Science and Information Technology degrees will be designed to meet Gov. Rick Scott’s $10,000 Challenge to help make higher education more affordable. To qualify, the College will establish criteria that students will have to meet.
BCC also offers more than 100 two-year degrees and certificate programs, including new Associate’s Degrees in Cyber Security and Health Information Technology that start this year.
On another matter, Richey informed trustees the College’s new Institute of Public Safety will be built on the Melbourne Campus in a cost-saving move.
The Florida Legislature allocated $14 million for the building last year to consolidate public safety programs now spread across BCC campuses in Titusville, Cocoa, Melbourne and Palm Bay.
The College originally considered locating the facility on a proposed new Viera campus near the Brevard County Government Center.
However, a detailed review of the project found using a Melbourne Campus site would save several million dollars that would otherwise have been spent on purchasing land and installing infrastructure in Viera.
“Constructing the institute on the Melbourne Campus saves taxpayers money because we own the land and have the infrastructure in place,” said Richey.
“We’ll use the savings to provide additional space at the institute for the many programs it will house, increasing its size from 40,000-square-feet to 55,000-square feet. That will improve educational opportunities for public safety students and others.”
Richey said a potential Viera campus remains part of the College’s long-term strategic plan.
The new Institute is needed because the primary facility now used — a converted outdoor basketball court on the Melbourne Campus — has reached the end of its useful life and the state Department of Education has determined it should be replaced.
The old facility will be demolished and the new institute constructed in its place. It’s scheduled to open in 2015, housing a Police Academy and criminal justice programs.