The South Dakota Board of Education has approved a new degree program at Southeast Technical Institute in Sioux Falls.

At its meeting last month, the board approved a two-year associate of applied science degree program for electricians at Southeast Technical Institute in Sioux Falls. The program is designed to provide graduates with the skills to become electricians and to establish hours towards licensure requirements.

According to the Rapid City Journal, the 6-1 approval came despite the complaint from Mitchell Technical Institute president Greg Von Wald. MTI is another technical college an hour away from STI.

Von Wald said the normal consultation process wasn’t followed and the new program will compete with MTI’s existing program. But Southeast President Jeff Holcomb said this is the third time the program has been sought for Southeast. Holcomb said it was blocked the previous times, the Rapid City Journal reported.

Von Wald said the president of the four public technical institutes normally confer with the state Department of Education before a new program is recommended by the department. DOE staff member Tiffany Sanderson said “the governor’s office and the Governor’s Office of Economic Development” want Southeast to offer the program.

It would start in fall 2015 with 24 slots for a two-year degree.