The B.U.S program was initiated by the faculty of the University of New Mexico in 1969 and is administered through University College. Each year, approximately 1200 students are enrolled with the B.U.S. program, making it one of the largest degree-granting program at UNM. Students in the B.U.S. program complete all courses required in the University Core Curriculum and design an individual 36+ credits plan of study leading to a baccalaureate degree. Plans of study may be thematically based, or specialized in two specific subject areas. Remaining courses will be selected through B.U.S. advisement. The programs of study undertaken by B.U.S. students reflect a broad spectrum of academic areas. While the majority of students focus on several disciplines within the College of Arts & Sciences, many design their curriculum with courses from two or more of UNM's other colleges.
The B.U.S. program is ideal for students with academic and career aspirations that require inter- or multi-disciplinary study. Historically, the B.U.S. has attracted many students who feel restricted by the specialized nature of traditional degree programs and want to combine two or more academic disciplines. Other students, particularly those returning to the university after years away, or those with full-time jobs, choose the B.U.S. degree because it has fewer specific course requirements than many traditional or pre-professional majors. These latter students tend to have specific job-related academic needs that can be met most efficiently through the B.U.S. program.