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Oct. 29, 2008

Contact Ward Jones at 608-796-3462 or or Roland Nelson at 608-796-3012 or


LA CROSSE, Wis. – Viterbo University will offer a new Degree in Three program for biology majors beginning in the fall of 2009.

This accelerated program is designed to provide an opportunity for outstanding, highly-motivated students to earn a bachelor’s degree in three years, rather than the traditional four. Students will also save on tuition and room and board costs by graduating early.

“There’s no shortcut in effort here,” Roland Nelson, vice president of admission said, “Students will be asked to meet all standard requirements for graduation. What changes is the time required—three, instead of four years.”

University officials stress that the program is not for everyone. In order to graduate in three years, students will be required to compress their schedules, taking 18 credits per semester as well as attending class for two summer sessions.

Only 10 students each year will be accepted into the Degree in Three program. Eligibility requirements include a minimum ACT score of 25 and a 3.5 grade point average. For more information visit

“We are inviting dedicated students to apply for and complete this degree in three years not only for cost savings, but more importantly, to provide them with an opportunity to pursue such goals as post graduate education and volunteer activities during that fourth year,” said Ward Jones, associate professor of biology at Viterbo University.

Viterbo is one of the few universities to offer this formal option, which is expected to appeal to students who in most cases will be pursuing graduate school or

medical school degrees. Viterbo offers students state-of-the-art science facilities, small class sizes, and a dedicated faculty who genuinely care about the success of every student.

An aspect of Viterbo’s strategic plan calls for the university to focus on programs which emphasize academic distinction and Nelson indicated that the Degree in Three program fits well with that goal. “While this program is not designed to attract large numbers of students, I expect it will be appealing to some very exceptional science majors and we’re excited to offer these gifted students a very unique course of study.”

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