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TROY -- Troy University's Surveying and Geomatics Sciences Program has become one of the few in the country to receive national accreditation.
TROY received accreditation from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), the premier accrediting body in the country for engineering and technologies, retroactive to Oct. 1, 2010.
"We are very excited about this," said Dr. James Rinehart, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. "This is yet another special accreditation within the College of Arts and Sciences and Troy University."
TROY's Surveying and Geomatics Sciences Program is the only one of its kind in the state of Alabama and one of less than about 30 in the country. Of those, fewer than 20 have been accredited.
"We've always been able to attract students regionally, but what this accreditation will do for us is attract students from the whole country," Rinehart said.
Dr. Steve Ramroop, program director, said this accreditation will give the program's students national and international opportunities.
"Our students can apply to take land survey exams anywhere in the U.S.," Ramroop said. "It's a measure of where we are in the program."
TROY began the accreditation process with an application, and then the program had to submit a thorough self-study report -- a report Rinehart said was noted by ABET as an exemplary self-study report at its national conference.
Rinehart said the program, which is offered as an undergraduate degree on the campus in Troy only, hopes to expand soon to graduate and certificate programs.
"It's a growing program, and we are honored to be the school of choice in the state of Alabama as far as geomatics studies goes," he said.
Both Rinehart and Ramroop contribute much of the program's success to its advisory board. Many members of the board are members of the Alabama Society of Professional Land Surveyors.
"They have provided tremendous support to our program since its inception," Ramroop said.
TROY has offered geomatics studies since 1998. During early Spring 2011, a team of five TROY geomatics students took top honors nationally in the 10th Annual National Society of Professional Surveyors Competition for a Hydrographic survey of the 45-acre Pike County Lake that included hydrographic and topographic studies combined to form a digitized bathymetric chart to complete the survey.