The Saginaw Valley State University Board of Control has approved a new environmental science program. In making the announcement, SVSU officials said the new bachelor’s degree will build upon strong academic programs in biology, chemistry and geography. They cite U.S. Department of Labor forecasts of 8% job growth in the field through 2028.

In other action, the SVSU Board approved granting graduate and undergraduate degrees. Around 875 SVSU students are expected to complete degree requirements this May. SVSU held a virtual graduation celebration Friday evening.

Including those expected to complete degree requirements over the summer, SVSU said more than 400 new graduates are completing degrees in fields that will place them in critical roles to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. That includes 72 students from SVSU’s nursing program who entered the health care workforce in recent weeks – before the official end of their final semester – in response to a State of Michigan executive order allowing graduating college students to quickly enter the field.