Campbell University opened its doors to two new schools this week, welcoming 96 engineering and 46 nursing students on the first day of classes.
Jenna Carpenter, founding dean of Campbell Engineering, said while other colleges often offer highly specialized programs for undergraduates, Campbell will offer a general engineering degree with concentrations in mechanical and chemical engineering.
"There’s been a push to sort of specialize students, even at the undergrad level, what I would call 'boutique' undergraduate degrees. The problem is there aren't a lot of jobs out there, because employers come looking for mechanical engineers or chemical engineers," said Carpenter. "So the move to try to specialize students very early is not a very savvy one. We will offer a good broad base. Everybody will take the basics."
Carpenter said the school's new facilities are designed to encourage collaborative learning.
"Engineering involves a lot of studying, and your best bet is to get together with people in your class and study together," said Carpenter. "It just provides a support network and kind of safety net. We've got space that facilitates team work."
The inaugural class at the nursing school also moved into new facilities this week, as the university opened the 72,000-square-foot Tracey F. Smith Hall of Nursing & Health Sciences.
"We are thrilled by the thoughts of throwing away the three-hour lecture block and engaging learning teams with active teaching strategies," Dr. Nancy Duffy, director of Campbell Nursing said in a press release.
The competitive nursing program is offered to rising juniors and enrollment is capped at 50 students.