Office of the Provost

2008 News

Appointment of Interim Provost

President Robert Altenkirch is pleased to announce the appointment of Donald H. Sebastian, PhD, senior vice president for research and development, to the position of interim provost, effective January 1, 2009.  Read more.


Celebration of the Life of Dr. Dana Knox

Thursday, December 11, 2008
Campus Center Atrium
2:30 p.m.

Please join us at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 11, 2008 as we gather to remember and celebrate the life of our friend and colleague Dana E. Knox.

A professor of chemical engineering, member of the Otto H. York Department of Chemical, Biological, and Pharmaceutical Engineering and Associate Provost, Dana passed away suddenly on Wednesday, September 24, 2008; he was 53. He was a great friend to NJIT and we are fortunate to have known him, but perhaps his greatest and most remarkable gift to NJIT was how much he cared about our students, and how committed he was to NJIT’s faculty, staff, administration, and friends.

Beloved as a colleague across the NJIT campus and as a dedicated advisor for many students who received their degrees from NJIT, he would have celebrated his 25-year anniversary at the university this year.

There will be a reception following.


October 27, 2008

The final report from an NSF-sponsored workshop “Women Engineers in Advanced Academic Positions, WEAAP: Effecting Change in Higher Education” is now available for downloading at: http://womenscenter.njit.edu/docs/WEAAP_REPORT_OCT_9_2008.pdf

The WEAAP workshop was convened at NJIT in January 2008 under funding from the NSF Directorate for Engineering, Engineering Education and Centers Division and the Director of Diversity and Outreach in the Office of the Assistant Director for Engineering.  In addition to focusing on specific obstacles of gender bias and developing strategies to counter them, WEAAP aimed to examine issues related to the changing demographics and fiscal realities among students and faculty in engineering colleges, as these integrated issues are key to the field’s progress, continued development and sustainability, both in higher education and for the nation. Those invited to the workshop included women administrators in higher education who had been trained in any of the various fields of engineering and who had served in faculty positions in the past in Colleges of Engineering.  Participants included women from 17 US states and Canada, from 18 public and 7 private institutions, ranging in enrollment from less than 2,500 to over 50,000.

Divided into three panel segments of two topics each, participants presented information both on their own institutions and on national trends. Discussion and networking followed each panel segment, and post-workshop communication on the issues raised continued via online forums where WEAAP participants posted White Papers, PowerPoint presentations, updated information and general questions.

The report contains both description of workshop events and an overview of the results.

Major conclusions resulting from the discussion include:

  1. A Network is needed: A virtual organization for professional engineering women in all sectors and across institutions needs to be designed, implemented and funded. This network and organization should be established as a partnership and with the support of other organizations, including SWE and ASEE.
  2. Once established, the organization should develop and promote the identified activities, including:
    • Create a think tank that operates as a brain trust on key issues
      • Economic models for higher education
      • Colleges of Engineering as part of the economic engine of states, regions and nations
    • Develop leadership in Colleges of Engineering for our campuses, for higher education, and for our professions
    • Support the graduate environment for women engineering students
    • Refocus on the professional school model for Colleges of Engineering
    • Train faculty and students for entrepreneurship
    • Create cross-sector collaborations


October 9, 2008 - Academic Regalia on Sale

On Wednesday, October 15th from 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm, the NJIT Bookstore will be having a sale for NJIT faculty on the academic regalia that we all need for participation in commencement exercises.  Please see this flyer for additional details.


September 30, 2008 - NJIT Community Mourns Passing of Associate Provost Dana E. Knox

The NJIT community mourns the passing of Dana E. Knox, PhD, professor of chemical engineering in the Otto H. York Department of Chemical, Biological and Pharmaceutical Engineering and Associate Provost for Undergraduate Programs at NJIT, on Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2008 at home. He was 53. Born in Mineola, NY, he lived in Troy, NY and Iselin before moving to Edison in 1995. He received his BS, MS and PhD degrees from Rensselaer Polytechnic University. He received the Franzosini Award from the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry in appreciation of his continuous contribution to the Solubility Data Project. Dr. Knox was serving as the chairman of the Subcommittee on Solubility and Equilibrium Data for IUPAC and was extremely active in the American Institute of Chemical Engineering, often organizing and chairing sessions at the National Meeting. He was also a frequent contributor to annual meetings of ASEE. An avid sports enthusiast, he once coached the Ice Hockey Club at NJIT and also enjoyed soccer, golf and racquetball. He was beloved as a colleague across the NJIT campus as a dedicated advisor for many students who received their degrees from NJIT; this year he would have celebrated his 25-year anniversary at the university. He was currently serving as co-advisor for NJIT's Student Chapter of AICHE. He received awards for excellence in teaching and for excellence in advising from the Newark College of Engineering. In 1994, Dr. Knox received the university-wide Robert W. Van Houten Award bestowed by NJIT alumni to recognize teaching excellence. In 2002, he was appointed to the rank of Master Teacher at NJIT. Surviving is his wife; Petra; and a sister, Laura Matthews of Plattsburgh, NY. A Blessing will be held on Monday, Sept. 29, 2008 at 10 a.m. at the Gosselin Funeral Home, 660 New Dover Road, Edison, followed by Interment at St. Gertrude Cemetery in Colonia. Visitation: Sunday 2-4 & 7-9 p.m. at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers or other expressions of condolences, and as a tribute to Dr. Knox’s commitment to education and to the NJIT community, donations to the Dr. Dana E. Knox Memorial Scholarship Fund at NJIT are suggested. Contact: Jacquelynn Rhodes, associate vice president of development, rhodes@njit.edu or 973-596-3407. NJIT friends and colleagues can share memories of Dana and condolences with his family at Remembering Dana Knox.


Open NJIT Faculty Forum Websites

The Open NJIT Faculty Forum agenda and presentations are now available to view by clicking the following links. Please note, at this time only those with an NJIT ucid and password are able to access the documents.

  • Materials Science and Engineering
  • Biological and Health Science and Engineering
  • Infrastructure Systems
  • Multimedia, Imaging and Information Systems
  • Greening and Sustainability
  • Computational Modeling and Simulation


July 14, 2008 - New York / New Jersey Metro Area Critical Infrastructure Symposium

This symposium will consider how well the critical infrastructure of the metropolitan area could withstand a hit by a Category 3 hurricane, something that the experts say will happen eventually. Sponsored by AIG, New Jersey Business Force and NJIT, this symposium will take place in Campus Center Atrium from 10am - 3pm. Contact hstraub@bens.org, rocco.cassetta@aig.com or matthew.dimmick@aig.com for more registration or form more information.


May 17, 2008 - University Commencement

The university commencement exercises were held today at the Prudential Center in downtown Newark. For more information and pictures from the event, please visit the commencement website.


April 9, 2008 - Board Day & Provost's Student Research Showcase

Today was the day for both of these events. In the morning, all of the various advisory boards and boards of visitors for NJIT colleges, departments and programs met in the morning. They concluded with a luncheon in the ballroom where President Altenkirch discussed the state of the university. Afterwards, several board members were among the judges for the Provost's Student Research Showcase, where the best of the university's student researchers presented their work.


March 25, 2008 - Snow Day Make Up

The University was closed for a snow day on Friday, February 22.  This lost day will be made up for by holding an extra class day on Tuesday, May 6.  That day the University will operate a Friday class schedule.  This will reduce the number of pre-examination period reading days from two to one (Wednesday, May 7th).  See the full spring 2008 academic calendar.


January 22, 2008 - Memorial Service in honor of Gary L. Thomas (Former Provost)

A memorial service will be held in honor of Gary A. Thomas (Former Provost), on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 from 2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Campus Center, Atrium.


January 17, 2008 - NJIT Vice President Joel S. Bloom To Receive 2008 Harris Award from the College Board

Joel S. Bloom, EdD, vice president of academic and student services and dean of the Albert Dorman Honors College at NJIT, has been selected by the Middle States Regional Assembly of the College Board to receive the William U. Harris Award of Excellence for 2008. The award is given annually to one who “exemplifies the characteristics of the person for whom the award is named, including his contributions to students, the College Board and the field of education in general.”  Bloom will be presented with the award on Feb. 14 during the Middle States Regional Forum at the Sheraton Atlantic City Convention Center.


January 3, 2008 - NJIT Community Mourns Loss of Dr. Gary Thomas

The NJIT community mourns the loss of Dr. Gary Thomas who died on Tuesday, January 1, 2008, at age 70.  From among his many years in practice as an engineer, professor and administrator, Dr. Thomas devoted 18 years to NJIT from 1980 through 1998. Thomas served as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs from 1990 to 1998, vice president for research and graduate studies from 1992 through 1998, and vice president for academic affairs from 1980 to 1990. Thomas also helped form NJIT’s College of Science and Liberal Arts (where he served as the first dean), the School of Management, and the Dorman Honors College. Subsequent to his tenure at NJIT, Dr. Thomas was appointed chancellor of the University of Missouri–Rolla. He retired from that position and returned to New Jersey in 2005.

Dr. Thomas is survived by his wife, Barbara Tedesco; four children, Katelin Thomas, Ellie Thomas, Derek Thomas, and Jennifer Tedesco; three grandchildren, Gwyneth and Caleb Foley and Ahsaan Cauley; his sister, Lois Innes; his brother, Donald Thomas; and many nieces and nephews.

During his service at NJIT, he led the development of the university’s academic and research programs resulting in significant growth in research expenditures to over $40 million. Dr. Thomas advocated for the growth of graduate education programs in order to support the university’s research effort. A doubling of PhD awards was achieved during his tenure. As a tribute to Provost Thomas’ leadership for graduate education and research growth at NJIT, the Gary Thomas Doctoral Fellowship Program has been recently established in his name by the university, with the first awards to be made in Fall, 2008.

Arrangements for viewing have been made at the Farmer Funeral Home, 45 Roseland Avenue in Roseland, New Jersey on Friday, January 4 from 2-4 p.m. and from 7-9 p.m. In lieu of flowers or other demonstrations of remembrance, the family requests that contributions be sent to NJIT to add to the endowment that supports the Gary Thomas Doctoral Fellowship. Checks should be made payable to The NJIT Foundation and sent to the address below. Questions regarding the Thomas Fellowship program may be directed to Jacquelynn Rhodes, Associate Vice President of Development at 973-596-3407; rhodes@njit.edu.

Office of University Advancement
Attn: Gary Thomas Doctoral Fellowships
New Jersey Institute of Technology
323 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd
Newark, NJ  07102-1982