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SDSU approved for new doctoral degree in engineering

VERMILLION — The South Dakota Board of Regents on Wednesday approved a new doctoral degree that will prepare South Dakota State University graduates to work in renewable energy, bio-resource conversion, and natural resources fields, with precision agriculture systems, and in advanced manufacturing and quality control.

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The Ph.D. degree in agricultural, biosystems, and mechanical engineering will be available starting this fall on the Brookings campus.

The program addresses a growing demand for doctoral-trained engineers in energy research and development, state and federal agencies, and in academia. The Governor's Office of Economic Development also has identified biosciences and value-added agriculture as key industries to further develop within South Dakota.

There is already a demand for this new degree program at SDSU, university officials told the regents. The university expects to have roughly 20 students in the program by its fourth year, and plans to graduate five students annually after full implementation.