Idealism, celebration and commentary from leading state dignitaries will mark the installation of NJIT’s eight president, Dr. Joel S. Bloom on Sept. 14, 2012, at 11:30 a.m. in the Naimoli Family Athletic and Recreational Facility on the campus green. (Editors Note: To attend the installation, contact Sheryl Weinstein at 973-596-3436.)The event will begin at 11 a.m. with a colorful processional through the campus green featuring 105 international students bearing flags representing their nations. NJIT, reflecting New Jersey’s demographics, is sixth in the nation for diversity, according to U.S. News and World Report. Later, NJ Secretary of Higher Education Rochelle Hendricks, former New Jersey Governor Thomas Kean and Newark Mayor Cory Booker will speak. The master of ceremony will be NJIT alum C. Stephen Cordes (’72), managing director and member of the executive board of Clarion Partners in New York City, an investment advisory firm specializing in real estate.
Following the installation, the entire campus is invited to join the new president in a tent on the campus green for international foods, music and a performance of popular cabaret and show tunes by the Ladies and Gents, a student quartet led by pianist and NJIT alumnus, Manny Vizzotti, of Woodbridge.
Highlights from Bloom’s speech include:
• Academics will be enhanced this year with a new cadre of faculty -- more than 30 new professors with exceptional, multidisciplinary expertise in such areas as sustainable systems, ubiquitous computing or “digital everyware” and convergent life science and engineering. Another 30 faculty members are to be hired over the next two years.
• The quality of life on and around campus will continue improving. The most visible campus improvement will be the opening next fall of the Warren Street Village, a complex adding 600 beds to NJIT's residential housing, along with a new restaurant, convenience store, fitness center and more, which Bloom has actively supported since the plan’s inception. The Village is the initial phase of the larger Gateway Project, led by NJIT, to redevelop 20 acres along MLK Blvd, a main thoroughfare adjacent to the campus. Newark’s former Central High School, now owned by NJIT, is the site of improvements that will eventually include smart-classroom technology, new telecom and computer networks and new lounges.
• Business and industry partnerships with universities to advance research and commercial development will grow. NJIT has had a long-standing commitment to economic development both in Newark and the state. The NJIT Enterprise Development Center, the state’s oldest and largest business incubator, supports 90 resident companies with 800 employees, $82 million in expenditures and $67 million in third-party funding.
Under Bloom’s watch, student enrollment increased from 7600 to over 9500 students, including increases in female and minority students. NJIT’s average SAT math score is now in the top quarter nationally; Dorman Honors College enrollment increased 70 percent totaling 685 with combined average SAT scores over 1350; articulation agreements are currently signed with the state's high-tech high schools and 19 county colleges; and accelerated joint admission agreements exist with UMDNJ Medical and Dental Schools, St. George’s Medical School, SUNY College of Optometry and more.
In his role as dean of the Dorman Honors College and vice president for student and academic services, Bloom has been integral in shaping NJIT’s academic plan.
Bloom expanded the Center for Pre-College Programs to prepare students for the rigors of science, mathematics, engineering and technology education; with the college deans and faculty, he expanded honors courses and undergraduate research, established the university's medical and health committee of faculty to advise and assist undergraduate students entry into graduate and professional schools and to coordinate the health-related NJIT disciplines; he increased retention and graduation rates, plus more.