Tom Hutton

COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO — Students interested in advanced studies in geography, including the applied use of geographic information systems and satellite imagery, will be able to begin courses at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs this fall.

On Friday, the Colorado Commission on Higher Education approved CU-Colorado Springs’ request to offer a master of arts degree in applied geography, bringing the total number of master’s degrees offered on campus to 17.

“Southern Colorado has an extreme need for persons who can apply complex data derived from satellites and other sources to problems ranging from land use to the tracking of animal herds,” Chancellor Pam Shockley said. “I am pleased that through this degree offering that we will be able to continue to serve the needs of this region.”

The master’s program will require 30 credit hours, approximately four semesters of full-time study, and will supplement the university’s current curriculum. Predicted enrollment is three to 10 students per year.

” Both the student demand for global information system classes and the market demand for professionals in the field is high,” John Harner, assistant professor of geography, said. “We have several new faculty members who bring expertise in biogeography, hydrology and urban issues. This will be an attractive degree to potential students and will strengthen the ties between the university and the community.”

Last year, the CCHE named the CU-Colorado Springs geography undergraduate program as a “Program of Excellence.” The award, along with a Geographic Information Systems laboratory and demand by students and employers, were cited in recommending the new degree.

CU-Colorado Springs, located on Austin Bluffs Parkway in northeast Colorado Springs, is the fastest growing university in Colorado. The university offers 25 bachelor’s degrees, 17 master’s and two doctoral degrees. The university consists of the colleges of Letters, Arts and Sciences, Business, Engineering, Nursing, Education and the Graduate School of Public Affairs.