New CASE degree programs become available for students

Trenedy Parks, Staff Writer

The College of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering will offer new associate’s degree programs starting in the Fall of 2023. These programs will be in Mechatronics, Culinary Arts and Hospitality and Events Management. 

As a whole, the program requires 61 to 65 credit hours for completion. It includes a reduced general education course, a required core program course and a completion of two out of three offered certificates. 

The Associate of Science in Mechatronics is meant to be a standalone degree program that puts graduates directly out into the workforce of Alabama after graduation. As UNA is Alabama’s workforce development university, there are many options for graduate students’ transition into the workforce. Different companies throughout the region have been in contact with UNA and have developed a process to help with their employment needs. 

The Associate of Science in Culinary Arts and in Hospitality and Events Management are meant to be continued into a baccalaureate program. The two-year degree program is for those who need to work now but would still also like to further their education in those fields. 

The programs’ target demographic is a mix of highschool students, first year students and adult learners. Catering to any demographic, the program is fairly flexible, allowing for students to have the option of online general education courses. The other certificate courses require in-person and hands-on learning. 

“[CASE associates] are working on a path for Florence High School students to work on and potentially finish the Associate’s degree while they are in highschool with the use of dual-enrollment.” said Dr. Ryan Zayac, Senior Associate Dean of CASE. “In theory, students could potentially walk across the stage with a diploma and Associate’s degree at the same time.”