Troy to Offer Alabama's First 4-year Interpreter Degree

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Education officials are hoping to improve the quality of life for deaf and hearing impaired Alabamians by starting an interpreting program at Troy University.

Officials announced the program today and it's the state's first and only 4-year degree in the subject.

Governor Bob Riley, Troy Chancellor Jack Hawkins Junior and state Superintendent Joe Morton made the announcement.

They say it will benefit Alabama's 39,000 deaf and hearing impaired residents by generating more people who can help them communicate in varying situations.

The program is especially timely because the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf will begin requiring bachelor's degrees in order to get national certification and licensure by 2012.

The program still have to be approved by the Alabama Commission
on Higher Education.

It will be physically located at the university's Troy campus, but classes will be available to students worldwide over the Internet.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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