Engineering Program at Southern Arkansas University Gets State OK

Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia has been authorized by the state to establish a bachelor of science in engineering program, the university announced.

The Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved the move on Friday.  The program will begin in the fall with an starting enrollment of an estimated 20 students.

"This is a tremendous academic breakthrough not only for Southern Arkansas University, but for all of south Arkansas," David Rankin, SAU president, said in a news release. "This program will boost economic development in the region and offer our engineering students an opportunity to stay in the area after graduation."

The Arkansas Department of Higher Education justified the new program on the grounds that SAU will provide engineering education to residents of the south Arkansas region and will provide potential employees for regional companies, according to the release.

Preparations for the program will include construction of engineering facilities near the SAU Science Center and the new Agriculture Center. WER Architects provided a study for SAU in September, which entailed outlines for a 11,015-SF construction project estimated at $2.7 million.