Faculty Senate terminates history of technology and science program


Noah Cary/Iowa State Daily

Rob Wallace, chairman of the academic affairs council, spoke on discontinuing the history of technology and science program on April 22.

Kelsey Bruggemam

The faculty senate voted April 22 on discontinuing the history of technology and science program.

The history department has previously requested that the current masters and PhD programs be terminated and redirected to different programs at the university.

Rob Wallace, chairman of the Academic Affairs Council spoke directly to the faculty senate about the vote.

Increased budget cuts caused the program to not have the support or funding that is needed. Only three staff members remain in the program due to retirement and departures. After this year there will be no remaining staff teaching in the program.

The department has found it difficult to recruit new students because of the competition among the states. With no remaining funding there is not sufficient money for incoming students. Final funding has been distributed to the remaining students in the history of technology and science program for the remainder of their time with the university.

By the end of the year the remaining students in the history of technology and science program will finish the degree’s requirements.

“That program — should it be discontinued — will have its remaining majors be transferred to the rural, agricultural, technological and environmental history program,” said Wallace.

For students wishing to complete a degree in the history of technology and science, there are schools within the Big 10 and Big 12 that offer similar programs including the University of Minnesota and the University of Wisconsin.

Over the past six years the number of students in the program has decreased from 13 to three.

No changes would be needed with faculty and all current members of staff will be moved to different departments.

No facilities or equipment are owned by the program therefor there will be no loses in any departments. Anything used by the department will have a use at the university.

The faculty senate also voted on a name change for the current Agricultural History and Rural Studies degree.

A major called Program in Rural, Agriculture, History Technological and Environmental History [RATE] will take over for students who are interested in the area.

This program will be two PhD programs at the university combined into one. The RATE program will combine with the current Agricultural and Rural Studies program.

Pamela Riney-Kehrberg, contact for the bill that was proposed for a faculty senate stated in the bill, “Iowa State’s Doctoral Program in Rural Agricultural, Technological and Environmental History offers a scholarly community and learning environment dedicated to the close examination of pervasive and enduring questions about these basic aspects of human history.”

Only slight changes will be made to the students’ course requirements, and no new resources will be needed.

There were no questions or concerns when the changes were voted on.