New graduate anthropology program at Sul Ross State University slated for fall semester

ALPINE –– The Center for Big Bend Studies (CBBS) at Sul Ross State University announces the creation of a new Master of the Arts in anthropology program, starting this fall. After months of development, the launch of this groundbreaking graduate program represents a new direction for increasing student engagement and research at CBBS and the university.

“We are excited to offer this new opportunity to our students,” said University Executive Vice President and Provost Dr. Bernie Cantens. “The creation of an anthropology graduate program complements the current focus on conservation and habitat management at Sul Ross, producing students who are better informed to meet the diverse challenges of implementing effective natural and cultural resource programs.”

The MA program comprises a 36-credit, thesis-based degree plan, with 24 credits of anthropology core curriculum and 12 elective credits, six which must be in anthropology.

“We project admitting six students each fall semester to maintain small cohort sizes and low student-to-professor ratios,” said CBBS Director Bryon Schroeder. “We want to provide the best possible graduate school experience for our students.”

All required courses will be routinely offered on a one- or two-year rotation, with an expected two-year completion. Coursework will emphasize hands-on training to familiarize students with the application of different methods/technologies for the appropriate setting.

“We will utilize a major asset of our university: our proximity to millions of acres of undeveloped land that stretches across the dynamic environments of the Big Bend containing world-class cultural resources,” Schroeder said.

The establishment of the graduate program at Sul Ross, coinciding with the re-establishment of the anthropology minor, occurs at an optimal time to meet the growing demand for archaeologists. Student anthropological work will be conducted in collaboration with CBBS to produce world-class archaeological research.

“Our students will leave the program with the skills and expertise they need to be competitive and flexible in a diverse job market,” Schroeder said.

Sul Ross offers one of the most affordable graduate degrees in Texas; CBBS is actively seeking funding to provide additional student support and graduate assistantships.

Accreditation is pending and expected from the Texas Board of Higher Education and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Interested students should contact the general anthropology email ([email protected]) or reach out to specific faculty members with questions regarding the MA program and graduate student research opportunities ([email protected], [email protected], [email protected]). General information about education opportunities is available at

To learn more about the Center for Big Bend Studies, visit