WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WAVY) — For the first time in more than 50 years, the William & Mary (W&M) Board of Visitors has approved the establishment of a new school.

On Friday, the W&M Board of Visitors voted unanimously to approve a new administrative structure that brings together the four academic disciplines of computer science, data science, applied science, and physics.

The 330-year-old university will submit its final proposal to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) by March 2024, with the school expected to launch in the fall of 2025.

“This is an important next step in our evolution to meet the needs of the 21st century and beyond,” said Rector Charles E. Poston J.D. ’74. “Our rapidly changing workforce needs technically trained individuals who have been taught within an exceptional liberal arts and sciences foundation. William & Mary has such distinctive strengths in these four areas, and the establishment of this new school will propel forward what is already exceptional work.

This would be the sixth school in the institution’s history and the first since the establishment of the Raymond A. Mason School of Business in 1968.