San Antonio – St. Mary’s University will soon offer two new degrees in the emerging field of forensic science. These are the first such programs to be offered at any San Antonio school.

The new Bachelor of Science degree in Forensic Science with a Biology or Chemistry option and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Forensic Science with a Criminology option will be offered beginning fall semester 2009.

According to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are approximately 12,000 positions in the forensic science technician field, with an anticipated 21% increase in positions expected over the next 10 years. The need for forensic scientists will likely remain strong based on these projections and the federal government’s DNA Initiative – Advancing Justice Through DNA Technology (a program to provide funding, training and assistance to promote the technological advancement and use of forensic science to help eliminate criminal investigation backlog).

“St. Mary’s prides itself on identifying career trends and providing the best academic foundation for our students to pursue those fields,” said President of St. Mary’s University Charles L. Cotrell, Ph.D. “In today’s economy, we want to equip our students with the skill sets that will help them succeed.”

Historically, more than half of St. Mary’s graduates who apply are admitted to medical and dental schools; the national average is 35 percent. But for those who choose not to go onto medical or dental school, forensic science offers these students another career path. The new degrees in forensic science will provide our pre-med and criminology majors with more occupational choices.

There is also a national call to promote forensic research and develop analysis standards. Our B.S. program is based in science with students choosing a biology or chemistry focus. Even students pursuing the B.A. with a criminology option will take the same core science classes.

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