JSU Logo

Jackson State University (JSU), an HBCU in Jackson, Mississippi, recently made a stride in STEM education after securing approval for two new programs in its College of Science, Engineering and Technology—one of which is the only program of its kind in the state.

The Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning in November approved JSU’s master’s degree in computational/data-enabled science and engineering (CDS&E) and a bachelor’s degree in biotechnology—the only undergraduate degree of its kind in the state.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, demand for biological technicians is projected to grow 5 percent from 2014 to 2024. And, Jackson State’s new undergraduate program reflects that trend, officials said.

“Expanding our degree programs under the umbrella of the Biology Department will help us to better address the STEM job market need for more biotechnology technicians,” said Timothy Turner, chair of the Department of Biology, in a statement. “We are up for this challenge and so are our students.”

Similarly, the master’s degree program—which will focus on computer engineering, industrial engineering, electrical engineering, computational engineering, civil engineering, environmental engineering and geological engineering, public health—creates more opportunities for students to land high-paying jobs in the thriving STEM industry.

“A comprehensive foundation in computational, mathematical and statistical methodologies is what our students acquire in the CDS&E program,” said Richard A. Aló, dean of JSU’s College of Science, Engineering and Technology, in a statement. “The program will provide courses that prepare students for careers in academic, business, government and private industry as data scientists and data engineers for graduate training in statistics and related fields.”