Houston Community College-Katy adding engineering academy through partnership with University of Houston-Katy

Houston Community College-Katy has partnered with the University of Houston-Katy to offer an engineering academy. In 2022, HCC-Katy plans to move its existing campus to a new building near UH-Katy.

Houston Community College-Katy has partnered with the University of Houston-Katy to offer an engineering academy. In 2022, HCC-Katy plans to move its existing campus to a new building near UH-Katy.

Katy-area students interested in becoming engineers will soon be able to take freshman and sophomore classes at Houston Community College-Katy’s new engineering academy.

HCC-Katy and the University of Houston-Katy signed a memorandum of understanding July 15 to partner and offer four-year bachelor’s degrees in engineering, HCC Northwest President Zachary Hodges confirmed. Interested students can apply for the academy beginning this fall, and courses will begin in fall 2020.

HCC-Katy will accept a cohort of 100 students into the engineering academy each semester, Hodges said. Under the partnership, freshman- and sophomore-level engineering students will be dual enrolled at HCC-Katy and UH-Katy but will pay HCC tuition.

Engineering-specific courses will be taught by UH instructors at UH-Katy, opening in mid-August at 22400 Grand Circle Blvd., Katy. All other courses—such as calculus and physics—will be at HCC-Katy.

Once these students finish the first two years of coursework at HCC-Katy, they will transition to full-time students at UH-Katy and finish their junior- and senior-level classes there to receive a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering, systems engineering, or computer engineering and analytics.

"The partnership creates more affordable and convenient pathways to a four-year engineering degree at the University of Houston," Hodges said.

Hodges said he was unable to provide an approximate tuition cost for the engineering academy because tuition varies by specific engineering degree. However, a three-hour course costs about $523.50, according to HCC's tuition calculator for an out-of-district student.

A similar engineering academy is located on the HCC-Spring Branch campus, Hodges said. It hosts the Texas A&M University-Chevron Engineering Academy, where engineering students co-enroll at Texas A&M for their first year or two of classwork before transitioning to full-time enrollment at Texas A&M’s College Station campus to finish the degree. HCC started this academy in fall 2015.

For students interested in attending the HCC-Katy engineering academy, application materials and qualifications will be similar to those needed for the Texas A&M-Chevron Engineering Academy, Hodges said.

HCC-Katy’s engineering academy will help address the need for more engineers in the Katy area, said Hodges and Jay Neal, the associate vice president and chief operating officer for UH-Sugar Land and UH-Katy.

“The number I’ve worked on—and I still can’t get my mind around this—50,000 to 80,000 engineers in the Greater Houston region will be retiring,” Neal said at the July 25 Katy-Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon. “So [University of Texas, Texas A&M, Rice University, Houston Baptist University and University of Houston], we cannot produce enough. We’ve got to have engineering programs out here."

HCC-Katy plans to relocate and expand its existing 108,500-square-foot campus at 1550 Foxlake Drive to a new 140,000-square-foot building at 228 Colonial Parkway, Katy, which is adjacent to UH-Katy’s new campus shared with UH-Victoria at Katy. Hodges said the new HCC-Katy campus is expected to open in 2022.


Here are the latest coronavirus case count updates from Fort Bend County. (Community Impact staff)
Fort Bend County COVID-19 case count surpasses 20,000 during week of Thanksgiving

Fort Bend County Health & Human Services reported 1,345 new cases of coronavirus Nov. 20-28. With these new cases, the county’s total case count has climbed to 20,440 as of Nov. 28.

Dozens of clinics throughout the county offer COVID-19 testing services. (William C. Wadsack/Community Impact Newspaper)
COVID-19 testing locations remain open in Montgomery County and more local news

Read the latest Houston-area business and community news.

Heading into Thanksgiving, Texas Medical Center continues to report uptick in hospitalizations

The total number of COVID-19 patients hospitalized at Texas Medical Center facilities has increased by more than 50% over two weeks.

The Harris County Justice Administration Department is working to release final reports and launch pilot programs in early 2021. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Harris County Justice Administration Department makes headway on countywide criminal justice studies

The department is working to release the final versions of several studies and launch pilot programs with local law enforcement groups in early 2021.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced a COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan for the state Nov. 23 for a vaccine he said could be available as soon as December. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announces COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan

The vaccine could start being distributed "as early as next month," according to a Nov. 23 news release.

The latest Fort Bend County coronavirus updates from the week of Nov. 13-19. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Fort Bend County hospital leaders warn of increasing COVID-19 hospitalizations

Fort Bend County Health & Human Services reported 685 new cases of the coronavirus Nov. 13-19, a 135% increase in the number of new cases compared to the week prior.

Laura Colangelo
Q&A: Laura Colangelo discusses challenges facing private schools during pandemic

Colangelo said private schools have adapted to remote learning and other obstacles in 2020 despite less revenue and a 9% decline in enrollment statewide.

Shake Shack opened its new standalone location at The Woodlands Mall in November. (Courtesy Christine Han)
Shake Shack opens in The Woodlands Mall and more Houston-area updates

Read the latest business and community news from the Greater Houston area.

Katy-area business owners adapt to COVID-19

“I want to thank the community for supporting us and shopping local,” Ebrecht said. “It’s been really amazing. We were surprised that we didn’t fall that far behind last year’s sales, even through all of this.”

Buffalo Bayou report draws some local criticism

Concepts that appeared to be early frontrunners included a new reservoir and dam structure in the Cypress Creek watershed and 22 miles of deepening and widening Buffalo Bayou, both of which would alleviate strain on the Addicks and Barker reservoirs during heavy rainfall events.