Texas A&M-Chevron Academies Create Money-Saving Opportunities for Students
COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Texas A&M University is reaching out to underserved communities and offering an affordable way to earn a degree in the field of engineering.
Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp recently spoke with July Romero, a third-year engineering student, about her experience at one of the Texas A&M-Chevron Engineering Academies around the state.
The Texas A&M-Chevron Engineering Academies allow students – including ones in urban areas with limited budgets – to gain access to Texas A&M’s world-class engineering program, while keeping costs low and staying close to home for part of the time it takes to earn a bachelor’s degree.
“This is just one way that Texas A&M University and The Texas A&M System work to make a world-class education affordable to all kids in Texas,” the chancellor said.
To see the video with Chancellor Sharp and July Romero, please visit http://chancellor.tamus.edu/videos/.
Romero, who was born in Colombia and speaks four languages, heard about the Texas A&M-Chevron Engineering Academies while she served as a math tutor in Houston. She grabbed A&M-branded fliers for her students, but she soon realized the program would work for her, too.
She found that the Texas A&M-Chevron Engineering Academies would allow her to save money by beginning her engineering education at Houston Community College. It also would allow her to enjoy the benefit of A&M professors and avoid a difficult a transfer later to Texas A&M. It also immediately made her an Aggie, she said proudly.
Beyond academics, Romero said the other people in the program “are like family.”
Romero added that the academies, which are offered in several cities in Texas, provide a vital resource for her and other minority students. Many young Hispanics often grow up thinking they don’t have many choices in life, and they believe that higher education is unattainable, she said. But the Texas A&M-Chevron Engineering Academies have proven that studying at a nationally acclaimed engineering program, like the one at Texas A&M, is a real possibility, Romero said.
“It’s everything,” said Romero, who is planning on pursuing a doctorate in mechanical engineering. “It is the best thing to have happened to me for my career pathway.”
More about The Texas A&M Engineering Academies:
The Texas A&M Engineering Academies are co-enrollment programs between Texas A&M University-College Station and 2-year institutions across the state of Texas. The Academies started in 2015 with Blinn College-Brenham. Corporate funding from Chevron allowed the university to expand the educational opportunity and launch partnerships in 2015 with Houston Community College, 2016 with El Centro and Richland Colleges (Dallas), 2017 with Austin Community College and Texas Southmost College (Brownsville) and 2018 with Alamo Colleges (San Antonio). The Chevron Academies provide an opportunity for students to begin their Aggie engineering degree close to home.
Students are evaluated and admitted to an Academy by Texas A&M. They are co-enrolled at the 2-year institution and in the Texas A&M College of Engineering. These talented students complete core coursework through the 2-year institution plus Texas A&M engineering course work taught on the 2-year campus by Texas A&M engineering faculty. This provides a similar academic experience in the engineering coursework as their peers on the College Station campus. After 1-2 years, students make the transition to Texas A&M in College Station to complete their engineering bachelor’s degree. The students can pursue any of our 18 degree-granting majors in the College of Engineering.
The Academies have three overarching goals.
- Expand accessibility to an Aggie engineering degree: The Academies allow a student to begin their engineering education close to home.
- Increase affordability of an Aggie engineering degree: Texas resident students enrolled in an Academy save an average of $3600/semester in tuition and fees compared to an engineering student at Texas A&M.
- Contribute to the technologically trained workforce in Texas: Students in an Academy earn measurable progress towards a bachelor’s degree while completing their associate degree. Through strategic programming efforts, the Academies are committed to advancing persistence and degree completion rates.
The goals of the Academies are directly aligned with the principles of the College of Engineering 25 by 25 Growth Initiative, specifically to “increase access for qualified students to pursue engineering education.” The Academies also support the 60x30TX efforts to increase the percentage of Texans with a higher education credential. The aforementioned Academies combined with our local partnership with Blinn College-Bryan are positioned to enroll up to 1000 new students each academic year.
About The Texas A&M University System
The Texas A&M University System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $4.55 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities and seven state agencies, the Texas A&M System educates more than 148,000 students and makes more than 22 million additional educational contacts through service and outreach programs each year. System-wide, research and development expenditures exceeded $972 million in FY 2016 and helped drive the state’s economy.
Contact: Laylan Copelin
Vice Chancellor of Marketing and Communications
(512) 289-2782 cell