By Laura Krantz GLOBE STAFF OCTOBER 07, 2015. A pilot program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology allows learners to earn a master’s degree by completing the first semester online and the second on the Cambridge campus, president L. Rafael Reif revealed Wednesday. The new arrangement is initially limited to MIT’s one-year program in supply chain management, which is designed for midcareer professionals. Reif said the rising cost of higher education plus the capabilities of Internet learning motivated the school to try the idea. He trumpeted it as a way to increase access to a skill set — overseeing the process of distributing goods to places where they are needed, whether in a factory or a grocery store — that companies say is in short supply worldwide. “The most important thing is to democratize access to MIT,” Reif said.