Kean University Adopts Academic Reorganization Plan
The Kean University Board of Trustees today approved a sweeping reorganization plan, creating the new College of Health Professions and Human Services for Kean’s healthcare-related programs.
The new College replaces Kean’s Nathan Weiss Graduate College. Under the reorganization, all Kean colleges will offer both undergraduate and graduate programs, according to their discipline.
In addition, the STEM honors program formerly under the New Jersey Center for Science, Technology and Mathematics has moved to The Dorothy and George Hennings College of Science, Mathematics and Technology. The honors program will be offered through the newly created School of Integrative Science and Technology, which provides a highly collaborative, integrative academic and research environment.
The changes take effect immediately.
“The reorganization will help move Kean along its trajectory as a research university,” said Kean President Lamont O. Repollet, Ed.D. “Our new College of Health Professions and Human Services will highlight and bring together our successful programs in growing healthcare fields, such as occupational therapy, genetic counseling and exercise science. The changes to the STEM honors program allow for more collaborative research and significantly improve our ability to deliver a robust education in the sciences to more students. At Kean, our motto is to always climb higher, and this gives us tools to do that.”
The reorganization comes as Kean is raising its profile in both research and transformational teaching. The University is increasing graduate programs, expanding faculty and seeking formal designation as an R2 Research Institution from the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education. Kean is currently a Carnegie-designated Professional/Doctoral University and New Jersey’s Urban Research University.
Kean Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs David Birdsell, Ph.D., said current Kean students will not see any changes in course planning.
He said the reorganization brings Kean in line with current higher education best practices.
“The reorganization puts all of the degree and certificate programs with similar substantive interests, pedagogies and career outcomes together for the first time,” Birdsell said.
Over the next two to three years, Kean expects to roughly double the number of students studying science on an honors basis, Birdsell said. STEM students and faculty will utilize state-of-the-art labs in both Kean’s STEM Building and Hennings Research at CSMT. The University will also significantly boost the number of honors-affiliated faculty.
“Over the last 14 months, Kean has hired a larger fraction of its tenure-track faculty than any other university in the country,” Birdsell said. “Our new academic structure gives all of them equal access to the laboratories and facilities they need to sustain the high-quality research and teaching they have come here to accomplish. The whole is truly greater than the sum of the parts.”
Kean Associate Provost for Science and Technology Keith Bostian, Ph.D., was named acting dean of the College of Health Professions and Human Services. A national search will be conducted for the dean of the new College.
“Having all healthcare programs in one College simply makes sense,” Bostian said. “Kean has a growing number of these programs to meet demand in healthcare fields, and this reorganization allows students and faculty in different disciplines to learn and work together more closely, as they will do in professional clinical settings.”
George Chang, Ph.D., dean of CSMT, said the reorganization will further strengthen Kean’s ability to graduate students into successful careers in STEM fields.
“As New Jersey’s urban research university, Kean is committed to providing the best science programs in the state,” Chang said. “Folding Kean’s STEM honors program into the School of Integrative Science and Technology at Hennings College allows us to build and expand on that commitment for all of our students.”