Smaller Departments, Bigger Opportunities: USU's ASTE Department Splits

Oct 25, 2019

The School of Applied Sciences, Technology and Education, or ASTE, ran into an interesting problem - the department keeps growing. Their solution? Divide the students and faculty of USU's College of Agriculture and Applied Science's largest department into two departments that can be better managed. This department divide will take place at both the Logan and Price Utah State University campuses.

Rebecca Lawver, an associate professor at Utah State University, has been appointed the interim head of ASTE for the Logan campus. She is currently overseeing programs for 574 students and about 40 faculty.

“Dividing the department gives us the opportunity to expand some of the current programs that we have, and that’s where I see our future with this division is us being able to grow the current programs that we have," Lawver said.

Before the divide, one person was overseeing 1,500 students and 80 faculty while also balancing one big budget for the department. These numbers have been growing over the past few years and are projected to keep growing.

“Aviation has grown huge," Lawver said. "They have expanded so much that we need to expand to the Price campus. Outdoor design and development continues to be a large program in the college. We also have opportunities for growth in some of our other programs. Agriculture education has grown quite a bit over the last couple of years. There’s just lots of potential.”

USU President Noelle Cockett says her priorities for the university is supported by this change by making post-secondary education accessible to communities and underserved populations throughout Utah while enhancing student success through experiential learning.