This essay details the establishment and progress of an innovative part-time doctoral program that is available to engineering students at Penn State Great Valley, which is the graduate center for Penn State in the Philadelphia suburbs. The degree is offered under the auspices of the University of Wales at Swansea in the UK. Entrance to the program is highly competitive, based on a dossier that includes post-Masters coursework and other scholastic and professional achievements. Once admitted to the program, the student performs three to five years of directed research, culminating in the successful defense of a thesis that is directed by an anonymous external examiner. The paper asserts the synergistic value of a combination of the US and European models for doctoral programs and its intrinsic benefit to international research collaborations.
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