New center to provide professional education and applied research opportunities
During the third annual Technology Week, the College of Technology introduced the Center for Professional Studies in Technology and Applied Research (ProSTAR) to the general public. A panel discussion highlighted the benefits of the new center for students, faculty, and industry partners.
The Center, which received University approval in February, will administer graduate-level degrees, certificates, courses, and workshops to professionals in business and technology fields in cooperation with the academic departments. It was established to support the university's strategic plan in the area of engagement, promote partnerships with business and industry, and drive economic growth.
The programs and courses can be delivered on campus, by distance, at a customer location, or using a combination of methods. Courses in each of the programs are taught by College of Technology faculty in various departments.
"The center will fulfill the College of Technology's mission to provide applied research opportunities to professionals around the state as well as the nation," said Gary Bertoline, associate dean for graduate programs and research in the college. "It will create opportunities to partner with business and industry professionals to identify and implement significant improvement projects."
Mark Schuver, currently director of professional education and the Weekend Master's Degree Program in the Department of Industrial Technology, will be the center's director.
He said that in the past, the organization for professional programs in the college has been administered at the department level, but the new center will provide a focal point to enable academic departments to implement programs that support their strategic initiatives. It also will be a resource for external organizations and individuals seeking educational opportunities.
"This will result in better and more efficient coordination, enabling the college to offer more courses and graduate-level programs in the future," Schuver said. "We expect to expand the number of programs as we continue to respond to the demand for innovation and technology leadership skill development in business and industry."
Since ProSTAR’s creation, organizers have launched two new initiatives: a master of science in technology degree program to be hosted at the Subaru of Indiana Automotive plant in Lafayette and a master’s degree in information technology project management. Both programs can be completed in 22 months and are accepting applicants for Fall 2009. Both programs build on the success of the current Weekend Master's Degree and Rolls-Royce Master's Degree program format.
A third new program offers a concurrent degree with Anderson University. It allows a student to obtain a master of science degree in technology from Purdue and an MBA from Anderson University, both in less than three years
More programs are being planned through partnerships with other companies, institutions, and Purdue entities. ProSTAR is one of 116 official centers at Purdue and is housed on the first floor of the Engineering Administration Building.
Read more about the center and its offerings.