Tarleton’s COAES adds degree in agricultural communication

Thursday, February 20, 2020

STEPHENVILLE, Texas — Tarleton State University’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (COAES) has received approval from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to offer a Bachelor of Science in agricultural communication beginning in the fall.

“Today’s consumer-driven society requires accurate communication between agricultural leaders and the public,” said Dr. Karen Murray, executive vice president for academic affairs and provost. “This new stand-alone bachelor’s degree will combine the knowledge of agriculture science and the know-how for careers in public relations, marketing and journalism.”

Tarleton has offered agricultural communication for almost 15 years as an option under its bachelor’s degree in agricultural services and development, which also includes agricultural education, agricultural industries and agencies, and interdisciplinary agriculture.

“Offering agricultural communication as a bachelor’s degree positions Tarleton as a premier comprehensive regional university and places our students on the same playing field as peer institutions offering the same degree,” said Chandra Andrew, assistant professor in the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Sciences.

The new degree is modeled after the previous concentration. Current students will have the option to switch to it and be the first Tarleton graduates with a bachelor’s of agricultural communication.

“From a recruiting perspective, having a bachelor’s of agricultural communication makes the degree offering more visible to prospective students,” said Wayne Atchley, who heads the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Sciences. “When students search Texas universities offering agricultural communication, Tarleton will now populate as a search result.”

In addition to the new bachelor’s degree, COAES is growing in other areas. Since fall 2014, enrollment is up 9.75 percent. A new multipurpose Animal and Plant Sciences Center opened last summer, featuring state-of-the-art teaching laboratories, livestock areas, an arena, greenhouses and a retail sales space. And a new graduate program in animal science is preparing students for careers as animal geneticists and nutritionists, and dairy and poultry scientists.

For more information on Tarleton’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, visit www.tarleton.edu/COAES.

Tarleton, founding member of The Texas A&M University System, provides a student-focused, value-driven education marked by academic innovation and a dedication to transform today’s scholars into tomorrow’s leaders. It offers degree programs to more than 13,000 students at Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian, RELLIS Academic Alliance in Bryan, and online, emphasizing real-world learning experiences that address societal needs while maintaining its core values of tradition, integrity, civility, excellence, leadership and service.

Dr. Wayne Atchley, Heald of the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Sciences

A founding member of The Texas A&M University System, Tarleton is breaking records — in enrollment, research, scholarship, athletics, philanthropy and engagement — while transforming the lives of more than 15,000 students in Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian, A&M RELLIS at Bryan and online. True to Tarleton’s values of excellence, integrity, and respect, academic programs emphasize real world learning and address regional, state and national needs.