Texas A&M announces initiative to increase engineering enrollment to 25,000 students

25 by 25 Header

Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp today (Jan. 23) announced plans for Texas A&M University to grow engineering enrollment to 25,000 students by 2025. 

The 25 by 25 initiative was developed in response to the critical need to increase the engineering workforce of the state and the nation.

"Last year, more than 10,000 students applied for only 1,600 undergraduate slots available in the Dwight Look College of Engineering at Texas A&M, one of the top ranking public institutions for undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering," Sharp said. "And universities from other states have set up offices to recruit our top students out of Texas. As a land grant institution, we are taking measures to provide access to a high quality engineering education for more students to keep our nation competitive in the global landscape."

The initiative has three guiding principles:

  • Increase accessibility to engineering education at all levels;
  • Transform the educational experience to better prepare students to engage in and meet the future needs of the engineering marketplace; and
  • Deliver engineering education in a cost-effective and affordable manner.

The Dwight Look College of Engineering at Texas A&M is one of the largest and highly ranked engineering programs in the nation, with more than 11,000 engineering students enrolled. Texas A&M has graduated thousands of engineers who are having an impact on the world by addressing issues of critical importance.

Texas A&M President R. Bowen Loftin underscored the need for making engineering education even more accessible to students.

"The demand for engineering education at Texas A&M has never been higher," Loftin said. "The Texas Workforce Commission has projected the need for engineers entering the workforce will increase significantly over the next 12 years. Texas A&M is stepping forward to meet this critical need for our state and nation. 

Dr. M. Katherine Banks, vice chancellor and dean of engineering, said the 25 by 25 initiative is not just about increasing enrollment, but also about providing better instruction and student opportunities.

"We cannot grow in the way that universities have traditionally grown, by simply spending more," Banks said. "We are looking at a model that ultimately leverages our existing resources to deliver a high-quality education in a cost-effective manner. In addition to increasing our enrollment, we will be transforming engineering education to mold the engineer of the future." 

Curricula will be enhanced through technology-enabled learning, and an extensive Professor of Practice program will be established for industry leaders to return to the classroom.

"Through our innovative educational and recruiting efforts, Texas A&M will lead the way as we become the single largest engineering program in the United States," Banks said. "At current growth rates, projections show that Texas A&M’s increase in engineering degree production will elevate Texas as second only to California in the number of engineering degrees granted per year."

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn praised the program.

"In the global competition for the best and brightest minds in math and science, the United States should take a backseat to no one," Cornyn said. "That is why I support efforts to provide visas to high-skill immigrants with graduate STEM degrees, and I am pleased that Texas A&M University has announced its commitment to increasing the enrollment and graduation rate of students in these fields."

The 25 by 25 initiative has received strong support from former students, including Mark W. Albers, a 1979 graduate and senior vice president of Exxon Mobil Corporation.

"At ExxonMobil, we recognize from our own involvement in education, that to increase achievement in science, technology, engineering and math, our nation’s schools must challenge students with a strong curricula and we must support teacher training in the subjects they teach," Albers said. "The 25 by 25 initiative does just that. Aggie engineers will be solving problems all around the world. Not just at companies, in the lab, or in the field, but they will be meeting the world’s most pressing needs."

S. Shariq Yosufzai, a 1974 graduate and vice president of Chevron said, "As an alumnus of Texas A&M, I am excited by the transformational potential of the 25 by 25 initiative in engineering. Having recently served as chairman of the board of the California Chamber of Commerce, I had the opportunity to observe the impact of investment in the 1950s in California’s higher education system, which resulted in the state becoming the center of technology and innovation of the world. This 25 by 25 initiative could do the same thing for the state of Texas."

STATEMENTS OF SUPPORT

Bill Flores, U.S. House of Representatives
"Texas A&M’s 25 by 25 Initiative is great news for the University and for the State of Texas. This dedication to increased engineering education access will aid in innovation, investigation and investment for our country; all of which will ultimately facilitate economic growth and prosperity for American families. I applaud Texas A&M University for launching this initiative and look forward to supporting its success in meeting the needs of the engineering marketplace."

Lamar Smith, U.S. House of Representatives, Chairman of the Committee on Science, Space and Technology
“It is exciting that [Texas A&M] recognizes the importance of engineering education by setting a goal of enrolling 25,000 engineering students by 2025. The Committee on Science, Space and Technology strives to ensure science, technology, engineering and mathematics education programs are adequately addressing America’s workforce needs. The plan for the 25 by 25 initiative to increase the number of engineering students will be an important step in building a stronger, technically trained workforce.”

Craig C. Brown '75, president and CEO of Bray International Inc.
"We are a Texas-based company with sales and manufacturing locations in over 50 countries. As a result, we experience daily the increasing need and advantages of having a dynamic supply of engineers to fulfill the future growth potential for Texas in our global environment. Texas A&M’s 25 by 25 program reflects a vision for the continued success and leadership of Texas in the future. The demand for engineers is much greater than the current supply, and will continue to grow."

About the A&M System

The A&M System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $3.5 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, seven state agencies and a comprehensive health science center, the A&M System educates more than 120,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. Externally funded research expenditures exceed $780 million and help drive the state’s economy.

Contact: Steven B. Moore
(979) 458-6023
Syscomm@tamus.edu

About Texas A&M University

Texas A&M University is one of the nation’s largest and most prestigious public universities, with more than 53,000 students and membership in the Association of American Universities. Located in College Station, Texas A&M has been recognized nationally as a leader in serving the public good (Washington Monthly) and producing graduates ready to enter the workforce (Wall Street Journal). With a distinguished faculty that includes many of the top experts in their respective fields, research conducted at Texas A&M represents an annual investment of more than $700 million, ranking among the top 20 universities in the country and contributing significant economic benefits to the state, nation and world.

Contact: Jason Cook
(979) 458-1729
jason.cook@tamu.edu

About the Dwight Look College of Engineering

With nearly 400 tenured/tenure-track faculty members and more than 11,000 students, the Look College is one of the largest engineering schools in the country, ranking third in undergraduate enrollment and eighth in graduate enrollment. The college is ranked seventh in graduate studies, eighth in undergraduate programs, and second in research expenditures among public institutions by U.S. News & World Report, with seven of the college’s 12 departments ranked in the Top 10. 

Contact: Marilyn Martell
(979) 777-8188
mmartell@tamu.edu

Leave a comment




David Davila said

How can I help? I am a 1989 graduate with a BS in Aerospace Engineering. I have worked for Boeing for 23 years doing system, integration and test engineering. I am Mexican American and grew up in San Antonio and I plan to retire in 7 years. I look forward to your response. Thanks, David Dávila Jr. Test Manager Boeing Test and Evaluation

Gary Halter said

Currently only about half of the entering freshman class graduates with a degree in engineering. Most flunk out taking courses in the college of science. Why not stop the current practice of admitting students that the college knows wont graduate so the college can claim resources based on majors rather than graduates.

Arc Tangent said

Professors of the Practice seems to be a cornerstone of this initiative. However, they generally enter the fray during the senior year and the design classes - by then the classes will have winnowed down to the hardcore. I also don't see a plan to bring on new faculty. Are the faculty just going to teach uncompensated overloads at the freshman/sophomore levels until their research withers and dies? I'm glad everyone is enthusiastic, and I hope it works, but as a former student looking in, I just don't see any concrete plans that would allow this to work without a way to stanch the exodus of faculty.

Mohammad A. Subedar said

Although I possess an undergraduate degree in engineering more than 35 years ago, I have been out of touch for many years. Engineering still plays a big role in developing countries. I am interested to pursue education and get a doctorate in engineering, get experience in the industry and do either consulting or teaching. I am willing to contribute towards the need of producing more qualified engineers which Texas A&M University wants to initiate.

MD. HAFIZAR RAHMAN said

I am so delighted after reading about Dwight Look College of Engineering. My daughter recently got selected for Electrical Engineering Program( Undergraduate). I wish continuous success of A&M as a leading University.

Jim Bechman said

Will only work if your make the courses easier, thereby diminishing the prestige and more importantly the effectiveness. of the program.

mahd dada said

This is a horrible idea. The bill will significantly lower the value of TAMU engineering degrees going forward. Students below a certain standard should pursue other degrees or engineering at different institutions in Texas.