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KNOXVILLE—The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, College of Engineering has entered into an agreement with Fisk University in Nashville to offer a dual-degree program in science and engineering.

The five-year program, which begins in the fall, will allow students to spend their first three years at Fisk as math and science majors and then transfer to UT for two years to complete their engineering degrees. Students graduate with two bachelor’s degrees, one from each institution.

The agreement was signed today by Wayne Davis, dean of UT’s College of Engineering, and Hazel O’Leary, president of Fisk.

According to the National Science Foundation, Fisk is the No. 1 producer of African Americans who go on to earn doctoral degrees in the natural sciences.

“At Fisk, 26 percent of our students major in life and physical science, computer sciences, and mathematics,” O’Leary said. “The Fisk/University of Tennessee dual-degree program will offer more options for our talented students to earn multi-disciplinary degrees and become professional leaders.”

Davis said UT’s College of Engineering is excited about working with Fisk to offer its students increased access to UT.

“We look forward to implementing the program and encouraging more students to consider engineering as a career option,” he said. “Engineering has seven of the ten top-requested majors by employers. The graduate of this dual-degree program will have better access and more opportunities to apply and be admitted to engineering graduate programs after receiving the two degrees.

“These students will be heavily recruited by engineering graduate schools, either at UT or elsewhere across the country,” Davis said.

Participants in the dual-degree program will spend three years at Fisk taking English, chemistry, math, computer science, physics, and economics courses. They must earn a minimum 2.8 cumulative average and a C or better in specific courses.

To be eligible for the program, students must meet the general entrance requirement of UT’s College of Engineering and be recommended by Fisk.

Both universities will appoint liaison officers to coordinate the program.

The agreement will be evaluated after five years to determine what changes need to be made to make it more useful to other institutions.

For more about UT’s College of Engineering, see

For more about Fisk University, see and

C O N T A C T :

Amy Blakely, (865-974-5034,