Grad Programs Expanded on Atlanta Campus
May 19, 2006

Media Contact:
Mark Vanderhoek
(478) 301-4037 or (800) 837-2911

ATLANTA — Mercer University will offer four new or redesigned graduate programs on its Atlanta campus this fall. Three of the programs are in education and one is in public safety, and all are designed to enhance the knowledge and skills of dedicated public servants.
 
The College of Continuing and Professional Studies will introduce a Master of Science in Public Safety Leadership program this fall. The degree is at the leading edge of public safety education, according to Dr. Billy Slaton, the coordinator of Mercer's criminal justice degree program. The program is designed to augment all public safety disciplines and will include courses in terrorism, disaster planning, disaster response and budgeting.
 
"Today's public demands educated public safety leaders. Mercer University has stepped up to provide a comprehensive, integrated degree program that cuts across disciplines," said Stacey L. Cotton, chief of police for the City of Covington and co-coordinator of Mercer's Public Safety Leadership Program. "Mercer's new master's in Public Safety Leadership will provide current and future public safety leaders with the opportunity to learn the modern approaches to deal with current and future issues in public safety."
 
The program is the only one of its kind in Georgia and is geared for public safety professionals, including sheriff's deputies, police officers and firefighters, as well as officials from the state agencies, such as the bureau of investigation, state patrol, and department of corrections, among others. The schedule is designed for public safety practioners, with classes in the evenings.
 
The Tift College of Education has developed two new programs and redesigned a third to better meet critical education needs in Georgia. The new offerings include a Ph.D. program in Educational Leadership and a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program for those seeking teacher certification at the graduate level.  The College has also redesigned its Specialist in Education degree program to have a teacher leadership focus.
 
"We at Mercer feel strongly about meeting the needs of the communities in which we are located, and these new programs are a prime example of the quality programs we are committed to providing," Dean Carl Martray said.
 
The College will accept this fall the charter class for its Ph.D. in Educational Leadership program for the P-12 School Leadership Track. The research degree is for those serving as school and school system leaders. The program will be offered in cohorts and can be completed in three years, or nine semesters. A second track, one in higher education administration, is scheduled to begin in fall 2007.
 
For college graduates who want to redirect their career to education, the new Master of Arts in Teaching program is designed to assist the individual who holds a bachelor's degree in a non-certification field to earn a master's degree in education as well as initial teacher certification. Program graduates will be able to enter the teaching field with a master's degree at a higher pay scale. The program offers certification in three specializations: Early Childhood Education, Middle Grades Education and Secondary Education.
 
The Specialist in Education (Ed.S.) has been redesigned to focus on Teacher Leadership. The program will be offered to teachers who are certified at the master's level and who want to develop their skills as teacher leaders within their grade levels and schools. The degree also upgrades a valid teaching certificate to a T-6 level.
 
Individuals interested in the Master of Public Safety Leadership should contact Arvetta Townsel at (678) 547-6411. For information on the MAT or Ed.S. programs, call (678) 547-6330.  For information on the Ph.D. program in Educational Leadership, call (678) 547-6563 or (678) 547-6100.
 
About Mercer University:
Founded in 1833, Mercer University has campuses in Macon and Atlanta as well as regional academic centers in Douglas County, Henry County, Macon and Eastman. With 10 schools and colleges, the University offers programs in liberal arts, business, engineering, education, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, law and theology. On July 1 2006, the University will add its eleventh academic program, the School of Music. For 16 consecutive years, U.S. News & World Report has named Mercer University as one of the leading universities in the South. The Princeton Review has ranked it among the top 10 percent of colleges in the nation.
 
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