MSU Center for Distance Education celebrates as online program offerings surpass 50

Contact: Karen Crow

A student sits outside of Mitchell Memorial Library with her laptop, with flowers blooming and the "Scholar" statue in the background
With Mississippi State’s online degree programs offered through the Center for Distance Education, students close to campus or around the world can choose from more than 50 accredited online programs that lead to bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees, as well as professional certificates. (Photo by Megan Bean)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Mississippi State’s Center for Distance Education is celebrating a significant milestone, now offering more than 50 accredited online programs.  

Recent additions of master’s programs in foreign language and educational psychology are among degrees offered through six colleges.

“Mississippi State has experienced a nearly 35% increase over the last three years in the number of degree programs we are offering online,” said Susan Seal, executive director of MSU’s Center for Distance Education. “This is exciting, not because of the number, but because it provides more opportunities for working adults to expand their education and improve their lives.”

Bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees, as well as professional certificates, are available to students all over the world. Mississippi State Online currently has students enrolled from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and 17 countries.

Other recent additions to programs include bachelor’s degrees in applied science, business administration, industrial technology, and psychology, as well as new options at the certificate and master’s levels.

“After graduating from high school, I wanted to be a wife and mom, which is what I did,” said Lindsay Walker, an elementary education major and MSU Online student from Olive Branch. “I soon began to realize that I also had a dream of becoming a teacher. The online program at MSU provides me an excellent education that I can complete in my hometown while I continue to work to support my family,” she said.

Career advancement or changing career fields also lead many students to choose online education. Military obligations meant relocating for school was not an option for Drew Simmons of Ladson, South Carolina.

Simmons chose MSU Online as he planned for his retirement from the U.S. Navy. He pursued the Master of Business Administration-Project Management to prepare for life in the civilian sector and took advantage of the in-state tuition benefit for online students.

“The Master of Business Administration-Project Management has provided me with a more robust understanding of the financial aspects of engineering projects,” said Simmons, who completed his degree in 2019 and noted that the online program allowed him to stay on active duty and meet the needs of his family.

MSU has been offering distance programs for over 30 years, first launching the Bachelor of Science in broadcast meteorology. Now, the geosciences degree programs at the bachelor’s and master’s level are still among the most popular offerings. One in five of today’s on-air broadcast meteorologists is a graduate of MSU’s nationally recognized program. Other top online programs include interdisciplinary studies, business administration and elementary education.

“Mississippi State Online works closely with our academic departments to identify online degree programs that are most desired by students and industry. We want to ensure that our students have online access to the degree that best fits their educational and career goals, taught by world-class faculty, from a university that they trust and can be proud of,” Seal said.

For more information about MSU’s online programs, visit