BLACKSBURG — Virginia Tech’s online Master of Information Technology degree program once again earned a No. 2 ranking in U.S. News & World Report’s 2016 Top Online Education rankings.

The program – a partnership between the College of Engineering and the Pamplin College of Business – has maintained a No. 2 ranking for three years in a row, behind the University of Southern California. The program has been highly ranked every year since U.S. News debuted the Top Online Rankings in 2012.

“Our college is pleased to continue to offer flexible learning in an online format while providing a quality education,” said Glenda Scales, associate dean for global engagement and chief technology officer for the College of Engineering. “Through our partnership with the Pamplin College of Business, we are able to keep the Master of Information Technology program in the forefront amongst top online programs.

“The success of the Master of Information Technology program reflects our commitment to high-quality innovative teaching and our expertise in business intelligence and analytics,” said Robert Sumichrast, dean of the Pamplin College of Business. He added that the program has also seen increased demand and enrollments.

Parviz Ghandforoush, Pamplin’s associate dean for extended campus and executive director of the Master of Information Technology program, said that students from various countries across the world are enrolled in the program, which has educated and trained professionals in information technology since 1999.

Prospective students can learn more about the online Master of Information Technology Degree through an online information session at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28.

The magazine also ranked Virginia Tech No. 9 for best online graduate engineering programs, tying with Missouri University of Science & Technology. This year’s ranking moved Virginia Tech up six spots from last year’s No. 15 ranking, remaining the highest-ranked engineering program in Virginia.

The College of Engineering offers three master’s programs entirely online, including aerospace engineering, information technology, and ocean engineering.

Currently, Virginia Tech offers a number of distance-learning programs including graduate degrees and certificates through Virginia Tech Online in diverse fields such as food safety and biosecurity, political science, electrical engineering, and information technology, and more.

The programs meet challenging academic standards while utilizing the latest technology to deliver course content online, with small class sizes and flexible scheduling, taught by nationally and internationally renowned faculty experts.

Virginia Tech has been involved in online and distance-learning education for almost two decades, offering its first online program in 1997.

U.S. News & World Report considers only degree-granting programs offering courses that are 100 percent online for the Top Online Education rankings. The magazine evaluated more than 1,200 programs. “The primary audience for these rankings is working adults – often in their 30s or 40s – who may not be able to take classes during the day but still wish to obtain skills and credentials to boost their careers,” according to U.S. News & World Report.

Highlights of the online rankings will be included in the magazine’s “Best Graduate Schools 2017” and “Best Colleges 2017” guidebooks.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.

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