Are branch-campus degrees as good?

Purdue University has announced that it will begin offering bachelor’s degrees in engineering technology at four additional
campuses—Anderson, Kokomo, Richmond and South Bend.

The degrees will be tailored to alternative energy, automotive and other needs of employers near the satellite locations,
so the educations won’t be exactly apples-and-apples with the home campus in West Lafayette.

However, Purdue says the educations will be equivalent in terms of quality. The faculty are West Lafayette faculty and must
hit the same research, scholarship and service standards for tenure.

The move nevertheless raises an interesting question that sometimes simmers in the background: Will recruiters consider an
engineering technology degree from a satellite location as highly as the same degree from the main campus?

Whether based on fact, stigma, insecurity, misunderstanding or something else, the point even pops up with faculty at IUPUI,
the downtown Indianapolis campus shared by Purdue and Indiana University. More than one faculty member at IUPUI has asked
local news media to identify them with their IU credentials and leave out any reference to IUPUI.

How do you feel about branch-campus sheepskins? Is there a stigma? If so, is it deserved?

Please enable JavaScript to view this content.

Editor's note: IBJ is now using a new comment system. Your Disqus account will no longer work on the IBJ site. Instead, you can leave a comment on stories by signing in to your IBJ account. If you have not registered, please sign up for a free account now. Past comments are not currently showing up on stories, but they will be added in the coming weeks. Please note our updated comment policy that will govern how comments are moderated.