University of Pittsburgh
February 14, 2001


Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH, Feb. 12 -- The University of Pittsburgh School of Engineering and La Roche College have announced the formation of a joint, dual-degree program that will allow students to earn both a liberal arts degree from La Roche and an engineering degree from Pitt in just five years.

Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg noted that the new program was an indication of the synergy possible among the high quality colleges and universities in the Pittsburgh region. "We are pleased to establish this new program which takes advantage of the complementary strengths of the University of Pittsburgh and La Roche College in a way that meets the needs of students who are preparing themselves to be successful in an increasingly technologically sophisticated world. This cooperative effort is yet another example of the wealth of higher education resources available in Pittsburgh and western Pennsylvania," Nordenberg said.

La Roche President Msgr. William A. Kerr added: "La Roche College takes pride in this relationship with the University of Pittsburgh -- a world-class institution of higher learning. There can be no substitute for academic excellence, and this cooperative undertaking will produce outstanding graduates, well prepared for challenging futures."

During their first three years, students will take a structured curriculum at La Roche that will enable them to fulfill their liberal arts degree requirements along with the required preparatory courses in math and science for their engineering specialty. Students meeting admission requirements would then transfer to Pitt to complete the final two years of engineering classes and any remaining requirements toward their liberal arts degrees.

Pitt's School of Engineering offers degrees in bioengineering, chemical and petroleum engineering, civil and environmental engineering, computer engineering, electrical engineering, engineering physics, industrial engineering, materials science and engineering, and mechanical engineering.

La Roche offers liberal arts degrees with majors across the areas of graphics, design & communication, education, nursing, sciences, humanities, and administration & management.

La Roche students entering Pitt as part of this agreement also will be eligible to participate in other education enhancement programs offered by Pitt's School of Engineering, including the Cooperative Education Program and Engineering Study Abroad Program. Students may also choose to pursue either a minor or certificate in another engineering or arts and sciences area. Participation in these optional programs may require additional time to graduate.

Last spring, approximately 50 students inquired about the program, and officials at both institutions expect to see the first applications to the program next semester.