Ashland University Institutes Three-Year Degree Programs
Starting this fall, Ashland University will begin offering a number of three-year degree programs, enabling some students to enter the workforce or pursue a graduate degree more quickly than they would with the traditional four-year degree.
Ashland University President Dr. Fred Finks said Ashland’s faculty and staff have spent the past year developing this program in response to student and family financial concerns.
“We have listened to people’s concerns about higher education and we believe this new program will help students earn a quality education in less time and for less money,” Finks said. “With this three-year degree option, students could earn an undergraduate degree in three years or six semesters, instead of four years, and save close to $34,000—the amount of one year's tuition and fees.”
Ashland University Provost Dr. Frank Pettigrew explained the benefits of the program, noting that besides graduating in just three years, the student also would be able to use the comprehensive rate payment of fall and spring to cover up to two of the six credit hours taken in the two summer sessions.
“This translates into having the student pay for only eight of the twelve hours taken during the required summer terms,” Pettigrew said. “Additionally, all summer courses must be offered through an online format.”
Pettigrew said it has been estimated that this would save students at the current cost rates approximately $24,000 in tuition and nearly $10,000 in room and board costs.
“And students who graduate in three years are able to not only save one year’s cost of tuition, but are able to join the workforce one year earlier, earning an average income of $35,000 for a total financial impact of close to $70,000, and reducing the cost of college by as much as 50 percent,” he said.
Pettigrew said he believes Ashland University is a step ahead of Ohio’s public institutions in this area. “In March, Ohio Governor John Kasich began pushing for Ohio public universities to offer three-year degree options,” he said.
The three-year programs are based on the 120-credit hour graduation requirement, which is the prerequisite for three-year degree programs to be viable. The programs will consist of six semesters over three years during the typical fall and spring academic year and two separate years of summer sessions.