TCNJ School of Engineering
Strategic planning is critical to the College and the individual Schools and Departments within the College. Planning allows us to thoughtfully use our resources in ways that ultimately move the School in strategic directions. This five-year plan guides our day-to-day operational and resource decisions, keeping those decisions in the context of the longer-term goals. Creating a plan involves listening to many ideas from stakeholders then assembling the ideas into a cohesive framework that supports the mission and vision of the School of Engineering. This plan has had input from faculty, staff, students, alumni, and advisory councils, and the departments will support this plan with their own strategic plans. The Strategic Themes, Goals, and Initiatives presented here are underpinned by careful enrollment planning, revenue planning, and benchmarking best practices.
Strategic Theme – a broad category that describes the aim of several goals within the strategic plan.
Strategic Goal – a target that is set out in the strategic plan. Several initiatives may be needed to achieve a goal. The achievement of a goal should be reported with defined assessment metrics.
Strategic Initiative – a specific set of actions that work toward achieving a strategic goal. New initiatives can be brought forward throughout the strategic planning period to help achieve strategic goals.
Grouping strategic goals into thematic areas allows the School to focus on a variety of initiatives that support the themes, making progress in a parallel fashion. The following three themes coalesced from the variety of ideas generated in many strategic planning sessions: I. Academic Excellence, II. Premier Facilities, and III. Cultivation of Community, School Recognition, & Revenue Streams. For each theme, specific strategic goals have been developed.
School of Engineering Mission
The mission of the School of Engineering is to develop highly competent professionals, preparing them for entry-level positions in engineering or teaching, or for further study in graduate or professional school. Allied with the College’s mission, the School of Engineering is proud of its public service mandate to educate leaders of New Jersey and the nation, fostering intellectual growth of our students so that they may become productive citizens in the service of humanity. The School is dedicated to providing a dynamic learning environment that emphasizes open-ended design, problem-solving skills, teaming, communication, and leadership skills.
To accomplish its mission, the School of Engineering:
- offers a broad array of exceptional academic programs including: biomedical engineering, civil engineering, computer engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, engineering science (engineering management and policy & society), and STEM education;
- engages students in creating innovative design solutions that include realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, sustainability, and global considerations, and disseminating these designs at national and regional venues;
- provides undergraduate research experiences, allowing students to work closely with faculty members; and
- employs highly dedicated faculty members who are effective teacher-scholars committed to maintaining a learner-centered undergraduate environment with emphasis on student mentoring.
The College of New Jersey’s School of Engineering: a recognized leader in engineering education.
I. Academic Excellence
Perhaps the most important responsibility for a faculty is the curriculum. As experts in the field, faculty members design the curriculum to create a pathway for a novice to become a competent professional. The various curricula in the School of Engineering span a range of specialty areas – from classic engineering disciplines like civil engineering to new, interdisciplinary disciplines like biomedical engineering – from elementary education teachers to secondary education teachers, preparing them to become agents of change that will bring about increased interest in the engineering field.
With the amazing pace of technological advancement, the School of Engineering needs to continue its tradition of quickly evolving curricula to meet the demands of the fields while maintaining or increasing the quality of the programs offered.
Goal #1: Enhance curricular experience through improved variety and flexibility.
Example Metrics: Number of elective offerings per cohort; Number of areas of specialization and themes (e.g. entrepreneurship, systems engineering, etc.); Number of students participating in curricular options by area or course.
Goal #2: Enhance support for the teacher-scholar model
Example Metrics: Research & pedagogical scholarship results for faculty and students; professional development activities for teaching; adoption of teaching methods rooted in literature and best practices.
Goal #3: Increase emphasis for the importance of professional and career skills to future student success.
Example Metrics: Student feedback on topics of professional and career skills; Percentage of students participating in career development events.
Goal #4: Increase emphasis on international issues and global nature of engineering within curriculum.
Example Metrics: Number of courses with international issues stated within their syllabus and/or lesson plan; Number of agreements with international hosts as well as increased frequency with which they are used.
Goal #5: Continue to attract and retain a high quality and diverse student body
Example Metrics: Quality of matriculated students including high-school GPA, SAT score, and number of students that receive prestigious awards (e.g. the National Merit Scholarship); Number of underrepresented students; Success by GPA and retention rates for first year students, transfer students, and other identified cohorts.
II. Premier Facilities
The School of Engineering is entering a phase of facility expansion that will significantly increase facilities dedicated to faculty and student research and innovative design. The new STEM building and proposed renovations to Armstrong Hall will enable us to advance the teacher-scholar model as well as to increase interaction with industry and corporate partners. These facilities expand the laboratory infrastructure to enhance the curricula, address programmatic needs, support effective teaching, as well as increase faculty and student research.
Goal #1: Improve the quality and quantity of space available to students and faculty for research and design in support of the teacher-scholar model.
Example Metrics: Square footage available for faculty-student research; New equipment and materials available for faculty-student research and student design (quantified in terms of expenditures and specific capabilities);
Goal #2: Complete renovations to Armstrong Hall in order to address needs of the Departments of Civil Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Technological Studies.
Example Metrics: Renovations designed and completed.
Goal #3: Maintain/improve laboratory equipment and facility quality to enhance curricula, increase student-faculty research output, and grow industry relationships.
Example Metrics: Number of dedicated laboratories; Increase in equipment/capabilities for research and teaching laboratories (quantified in terms of expenditures and specific capabilities);
Goal #4: Create additional spaces to support student study, design and research, as well as collaborative interaction.
Example Metrics: Square footage dedicated to students for studying, design and research, as well as collaborative interaction; Equipment and amenities available to students in these areas;
III. Cultivation of Community, School Recognition, & Revenue Streams
The College of New Jersey deeply values the community of students, scholars, alumni, and other constituents. The School seeks to strengthen this strong network of constituents that: understands the importance of the mission of the School, advocates for us, helps us to continuously improve our programs, and fosters specific programmatic initiatives that cultivate the community. These initiatives need to be leveraged to increase the national recognition of the School of Engineering and, when appropriate, increase revenue that supports the School’s mission.
Goal #1: Increase recognition of the School of Engineering regionally and nationally
Example Metrics: Percentage of applications from out-of-state students; Number of industry relationships; recruiting organizations targeting School of Engineering; Number of recent alumni with full-time support for graduate education;
Goal #2: Assess viability of focused master’s degree programs and implement most viable programs.
Example Metrics: Number of master’s degree programs proposed and developed; Marketing analysis results for proposed programs. Graduate program enrollment.
Goal #3: Increase activity of the Center for Excellence in STEM Education
Example Metrics: Number of professional development offerings; Revenue; Number of active contracts with school districts; Number of programmatic offerings for k-12 students.
Goal #4: Increase interaction with industry through participation in faculty-student research, senior project, and related academic activities.
Example Metrics: Number of faculty-student research projects with active industry partners; Number of senior projects with active industry partners; Number of students interacting with industry mentors on regular basis.
School of Engineering Strategic Planning Committee
This document represents the collective work of the School of Engineering strategic planning committee who sought input from a variety of constituents including faculty, staff, students, and external advisors. Special thanks go to this group of dedicated people.
Dr. Nabil Al-Omaishi, Civil Engineering
Dr. Thomas Brennan, Civil Engineering
Christopher Collins, Instrumentation Technician
Leon Collins, Student
Dr. Anthony Deese, Electrical and Computer Engineering & Co-Chair of Committee
Dr. Connie Hall, Biomedical Engineering
Dr. Christopher Wagner, Biomedical Engineering
Nhi Lam, Student
Dr. Steven O’Brien, Technological Studies
Dr. Karen Yan, Mechanical Engineering & Co-Chair of Committee