NATCHITOCHES – Northwestern State University and the Universidad Veracruzana, a public university in Veracruz, Mexico, formalized a dual degree program that will allow students to transfer from one university to the other and meet graduation requirements for bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from the host university. The initial degree available will be in business administration but officials at both universities hope to expand degree options to include nursing, engineering technology, hospitality management and tourism and creative and performing arts.
Officials from Veracruz visited NSU last week where they toured campus and met with faculty from several disciplines. Guests were Dr. Dr. Sara D. Ladron de Guevara Gonzalez, president of Universidad Veracruzana; Dr. Arturo Bocardo Valle, dean of economics faculty; Dr. Miguel Flores Covarrubias, dean of creative and performing arts, and Dr. Pedro Gutierrez Aguilar, director of health and sciences. They met with NSU President Dr. Chris Maggio, NSU deans and administrators Feb. 7 for a formal signing of the agreement.
Established in 1944, Universidad Veracruzana is one of the most important in the southeast region of México. Its academic organization is based on academic areas, schools, education programs and research institutes. Ladron de Guevara Gonzalez said the Universidad has a long history of classical music education with the oldest orchestra in Mexico and the only jazz degree in Mexico. The Universidad has a large population of American students and many of the faculty there earned advanced degrees in the United States. Leadership at NSU and Universidad Veracruzana said there are many similarities between the two schools and they both see opportunities to host visiting professors, researchers, artists and clinicians.
The dual enrollment agreement stipulates that in the first two years of study, the students of each university will study at their home university with its faculty, and in the last two years of study, the students will come to the campus of the host university to fulfill their bachelor’s degree requirements for host universities. The home university will define the eligibility and selection criteria for students to participate in the dual degree program.
Students will be required to meet the minimum credit hour standard of the host university in order to maintain status as full-time students. University of Veracruz students will be charged the in-state tuition rate and NSU students will be charged matricula ordinaria. Students must complete all requirements of the host university such as prerequisite requirements, general education, core requirements and major requirements in order to receive the degree from the host university. To fulfill these requirements, the duration of the program may exceed more than two years.
Northwestern State has developed agreements with several international universities in recent years and is host to a growing number of international students. The International Student Resource Center at NSU was created to help international students in transition from their home countries to NSU and promote opportunities for NSU students to participate in long- and short-term study-abroad programs.