Mayor Greg Fischer says he’s working with University of Louisville President James Ramsey to double the number of engineering degrees earned in Kentucky.
Fischer says the General Assembly should commit an additional $10 million when it sets the budget next year to expand engineering programs at U of L and the University of Kentucky.
If the commonwealth doubles the number of engineering degrees it would bring the state closer to the national average, he says.
There were 708 Bachelor of Arts engineering degrees earned at Kentucky universities that are accredited by ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) in 2012, according to data from the American Society for Engineering Education.
That includes 405 from UK, 276 from U of L, and 27 from Western Kentucky University.
The extra cash would be used to expand those engineering programs to graduate more students with degrees that have become increasingly important to economic growth in regions like Kentucky, Fischer says.
“To me, this is a really easy, relatively inexpensive signal to send to the country that we understand the importance of innovation here in the Commonwealth of Kentucky,” he says.
Engineers and scientists are job creators and are major factors in economic growth, he says.