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Chapman introduces new Ph.D. program

The new degree in computational science is through the Schmid College of Science & Technology

by Caitlin AdamsPublished: March 07, 2012 10:15 AM

Beginning this fall, Chapman Univesity’s Schmid College of Science & Technology will offer a new Ph.D. program in Computational Science. The school is now accepting candidates for the first term. The program received approval from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges in early December.

Students in the Ph.D. program will benefit from a range of studies in a number of subjects, due to the fundamentally interdisciplinary nature of the field of computational science. The curriculum will focus mainly on aspects of mathematics and computer science, combining aspects of other disciplines for a wide-ranging view of scientific calculation as it is used today. Graduates of the program will be well equipped for professions in the public and private sector, in academia, scientific research, and private industry and government agencies.

Prof. Michael Fahy, associate dean of the School of Computational Science at Schmid College, stressed the importance of the interdisciplinary studies in the fields of modern science.

“While disciplinary training is still paramount for a solid footing in the sciences, such as physics, biology, chemistry and mathematics, the complexity of the 21st century cannot be viewed through the lens of a single discipline,” said Fahy, who also teaches mathematics and computer science on the Schmid College faculty. “A vertical integration will allow our scientists and researchers to be in the classroom with our freshmen and in the laboratories with our graduate students. The combination of teaching and research across different scientific disciplines will create an optimum environment for developing leaders in this dynamic field.”

Chapman University has been developing its niche program in specialized sciences for quite some time, hiring a team of internationally known physicists and computational scientists in 2007 to collaborate with the faculty on the development of the program. The university introduced its Master’s degree program in computational science two years later.

Prof. Daniele Struppa, Chapman’s chancellor, said the new program completes the university’s computational science offerings at the higher education level.

“Chapman will be one of the few universities in the world to offer degree programs in the cutting-edge field of computational science at the undergraduate, master’s and doctoral levels,” Struppa said. “This will be a distinctive graduate program meeting a critical need that is largely unaddressed by other institutions of higher learning and will provide an academic entity known nationally and internationally as a model for science education and research.”

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