Two Year Junior Colleges Could Start Offering Bachelor’s Degrees in Texas
I have a confession to make. I never attended a four year university and I have never received my bachelor's degree. However, I did attend a Jr. College and I have received my Associates degree of Applied Sciences in 1997. Fast forward 20 years later I’ve always thought about getting my bachelor degree from a four year because Jr. colleges didn't offer four year programs, but the cost of going to a four year university wasn't in the budget. Well, that’s what I thought…
According to the Texas Tribune, junior college administrators within the state are trying to convince Texas lawmakers to start offering four year degrees in a limited number of fields.
They have actually been working on this for years and this year the odds are looking great because members of the House and Senate are leaning towards supporting the idea.
During my JC years there were a few popular departments (i.e. nursing, applied science, early childhood, and applied technology). The Texas lawmakers who support the bill say this would increase the number of students who earn a four year degree and give relief to the state of Texas of a shortage of employees.
Take nursing for example. There is a shortage of qualified candidates and nearly 40 percent of registered nurses in Texas are 54 years old or older. To make matters worse The Texas Center for Nursing Workforce Studies predicts that the state will be 60,000 nurses short of demand by 2030.
There are just a handful of junior colleges in Texas that have 4-year programs:
- South Texas College
- Midland College
- Tyler Junior College
- Brazosport College
However, more than a dozen lawmakers filed bills that would allow some or all schools in the state to add four year programs.
Personally, I think this is a great idea because many families can’t afford college and honestly, I believe this could make 4-year universities either lower their cost of admission to be more competitive. Only time will tell….