Provost, Jeffrey H. Toney, Ph.D.
As the Chief Academic Officer, I have the privilege of making sure that all students receive a world-class education, accessible and affordable, to prepare them for fulfilling careers of the future.
In his Opening Day Address, President Farahi said: “Kean cougars climb higher.” Our team of academic leaders, ranging from deans to executive directors, chairs and program coordinators are dedicated to supporting students to ensure that they achieve heights unimaginable before coming to Kean, working closely with Strategic Planning, Enrollment Management, and Student Affairs.
Some new initiatives for this Fall include:
The recently renovated Center for Academic Success (CAS) includes English, mathematics, and general education faculty teaching first-year students. They provide advising to the Class of 2023.
This space also includes the One Stop Service Center, where “student navigators” can assist you in registration, requesting transcripts, changing your major, graduate student services, financial aid, student accounting, and scholarships.
You will also find the Office of Student Success and Retention and the Veterans Lounge in CAS. Career Services and Center for International Studies are located on the second floor of CAS, and the tutoring center in the neighboring Nancy Thompson Learning Commons provides tutoring for more than 60 different courses.
Each year, we introduce new career-oriented programs aligned with future job markets. Opportunities this Fall include:
- B.A. Mathematical Sciences, Actuarial Science
- B.S. Biology, Forensic Science
- B.S. Chemistry, Forensic Science
- B.S. Computer Science, Data Science
- Master of Architecture
We have also introduced a range of exciting new minors, including:
- Environmental Justice
- Exercise Science
- Therapeutic Recreation
Finding your passion is not easy. After all, Kean offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and more than 60 graduate options. To support you on this journey, Kean offers Community and Volunteer Service in the Center for Leadership and Service, internship opportunities in the new Career Services, and research projects with expert mentors through the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs.
At Research Days this Spring, 1,076 students mentored by 155 faculty presented their research and creative works. For first-time, full-time freshman participating in Research Days, an astounding 92 percent graduated within five years.
It is also a great privilege and an honor to concurrently serve as a Visiting Professor at MIT since June 2019 in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy and as a Visiting Scholar in the Department of the History of Science at Harvard University since June 2020. In these roles, I have established ties with MIT programs dedicated to learning the latest methods in education, digital humanities, health and wellness, humanitarian and linguistic challenges, entrepreneurship, public policy, security studies as well as museums and community engagement, connecting the arts with science and technology. If you’ve ever dreamed of studying at MIT or Harvard and are interested in being part of these extraordinary initiatives, please contact my office for more details.
Each of these opportunities will not only help you graduate sooner but will allow you to explore the thing that brings you happiness. Once you discover it, you will succeed.
My path is to support your success in any way I can – it is a great pleasure and an honor.
Take advantage of all that Kean has to offer. This is your time to discover who you really want to become. If you need some guidance or support, reach out to our academic team.
I wish you great success this academic year!
Toney obtained a B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Virginia and a M.S. and Ph.D. in Chemistry from Northwestern University. He was a post-doctoral fellow in Molecular Biology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School and a post-doctoral fellow in Chemical Biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology before joining Merck Research Laboratories as a Research Fellow and Senior Research Fellow. At Merck,Toney studied a variety of therapeutic targets for which high throughput biochemical assays were developed. Toney joined the faculty of Montclair State University as the Sokol Professor of Chemistry and served as Department Chairperson, Chemistry & Biochemistry.
Toney joined Kean University in 2008 as Dean of the College of Natural, Applied and Health Sciences. During his tenure as Dean, Toney championed the development and enhancement of key academic programs in both traditional and emerging disciplines, including a M.S. in Nursing and a B.S. in Sustainability Studies, the first of its kind in New Jersey. Toney was appointed as Vice President for Academic Affairs in 2011 and became Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs in 2013 at Kean University. In June 2019, he was named as a Visiting Professor at MIT in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy. Beginning August 2019, he serves as the Provost and Vice President for Research and Faculty. In June 2020, he was named as a Visiting Scholar in the Department of the History of Science at Harvard University.
He has published a wide range of scholarly scientific articles with students as co-authors, with more than 3,000 citations, and holds six US patents. His commentaries have appeared in The Huffington Post and in The New York Times. His flash fiction works are published in literary journals such as Crack the Spine and 2 Elizabeths anthologies. He has been nominated twice for the Pushcart Prize. He is a member of the Advisory Board for SurgiBox, an MIT-D Lab initiative, and serves as a mentor for MassChallenge RI, part of the world’s largest startup business accelerator.
Toney’s research group at Kean University is focused on drug discovery using a multi-disciplinary approach, particularly to enhance student learning. Recent therapeutic targets have included antibiotic resistance and type 2 diabetes.
Research tools include, but are not limited to:
- expression and purification of recombinant proteins
- high throughput assay development
- cell biology
- computer modeling of known protein three dimensional structures for drug design.
Each of these projects relies upon key collaborations with Kean University faculty as well as outside the University.