New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) ranked ninth in the nation for conferring bachelor’s degrees in engineering to African Americans, according to Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, (formerly Black Issues in Higher Education). NJIT graduated 48 African-American undergraduate engineers in the 2003-2004 academic year - a 50 percent increase from the previous academic year.
“NJIT has been repeatedly recognized for being in the top 10 percent in the nation for awarding baccalaureate degrees to minority and African-American engineers,” said Joel S. Bloom, EdD, vice president for academic affairs and student services and dean of the Dorman Honors College at NJIT. “Historically, NJIT's commitment has included academic programs, services, financial support and a climate conducive to enrolling and graduating minority students,” added Bloom. “All of this produces results, and it’s great for the university to be recognized for its hard work and commitment.”
NJIT was cited in other key categories. NJIT ranked 16th nationally for conferring undergraduate engineering degrees to Hispanics; eighth for awarding computer and information science and support service degrees to Asian Americans – 13th for awarding these degrees to minorities in general and 19th overall for granting undergraduate engineering degrees to minorities.
Two programs at NJIT help the university achieve these national rankings, said Bloom. NJIT’s Center for Pre-College programs, which offers classes to fourth through 12th graders, particularly minorities, is the pipeline that cultivates early student interest in science, math, engineering and technology. Secondly, Bloom added, NJIT’s Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) allows NJIT to remain a top opportunity school due to the counseling, tutoring and scholarships that EOP offers its students. The program is so successful that Laurence Howell, executive director of EOP, was named minority-engineering program director of the year (2004) by the National Society of Black Engineers. That same year, Howell was also named chairman of the board of directors of the National Association of Minority Engineering Programs Administrators.
In 2003, Black Issues ranked NJIT 16th nationally and first in New Jersey for awarding 38 baccalaureates in engineering to African Americans.
The magazine, which has produced the annual poll since 1992, examines the graduating numbers for African-American, Hispanic and Asian students in the United States. The data for the study comes from the U.S. Department of Education. It is collected through the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) program survey conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics.