NSU announces new colleges and restructuring

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NSU’s Board of Trustees approved three new colleges to be put in place beginning July 1.

The additions include NSU’s College of Allopathic Medicine, the College of Engineering and Computing and the Farquhar Honors College. All degree offerings will remain the same; they are just moving under different administrative umbrellas.

In addition, existing academic programs will be realigned with other colleges, creating new colleges including the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences and the College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography.

NSU Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Ralph Rogers said, “The big driving goal is to better align graduate programs with undergraduate programs. There’s a reason it’s like that at most institutions — it works.”

Based on what is done at other institutions, the Board of Trustees felt that the Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences was too broad, and they wanted to separate the programs while maintaining the Farquhar name.

“When we really started looking at this, the concept of an overarching department of arts and sciences really didn’t work,” Rogers said.

For example, the bachelor’s in marine biology program is within Farquhar, but the new structure will move this program to the new College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography. The bachelor degrees in psychology and behavioral neuroscience will move from the Farquhar College to the new College of Psychology, currently called the Center for Psychological Studies.

In addition, the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences will house programs from what is currently the Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences including the Ph.D. programs in family therapy and conflict analysis and resolution and the master’s degrees in college student affairs and family therapy. Bachelor degree programs in criminal justice and gerontology, currently in the Institute for the Study of Human Service, Health and Justice, will also move to this new college.

Associate Provost of Academic Quality, Assessment and Accreditation Meline Kevorkian said moving these programs is called vertical integration, which is better for students and faculty and is commonplace among universities.

“There will be more interaction between undergraduate and graduate students and undergraduate and graduate faculty and a lot more opportunities for students to get involved in graduate-level activities while still in undergrad,” Kevorkian said. “So it’s really a plus for students.”

Kevorkian said NSU has vertical integration in some colleges but not others. For example, the H. Wayne Huizenga of School of Business and Entrepreneurship already includes bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees. Now, all of NSU will have a similar structure.

The College of Allopathic Medicine will offer a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) program made to complement the College of Osteopathic Medicine and NSU’s other health professions programs. The creation of the program makes NSU the only university in the southeastern United States, and the first in Florida, to have both an osteopathic medical school and an allopathic medical school.

The College of Engineering and Computing combines the Ph.D. and master’s degree programs, which were formerly within the Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences, with the bachelor’s degree programs in computer science, engineering and information sciences from the College of Arts and Sciences.

The Undergraduate Farquhar Honors College will house students in multiple disciplines who are in the honors program for meeting high academic standards. Students who complete Honors College programs will receive acknowledgements on their diplomas and transcripts.

Rogers said the addition of colleges will not affect the current curriculum for undergraduate programs. Faculty members will teach the same courses, and students will participate in the same courses — they may just be under a different college.

The program reorganization and college additions are modeled after other universities who have proved to be successful with their colleges and programs.

Rogers said that most universities have undergraduate programs that match with graduate programs, and he believes NSU using this layout will contribute to a better experience for students and give departments a better sense of unity.

In the past, students have had problems taking multidisciplinary courses. Rogers said, for example, a student in the Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences would not be permitted to take an online business class.

To figure out what the new colleges would be, the Board of Trustees matched undergraduate and graduate interdisciplinary programs, determined natural breaks in curriculum, such as science, honors and technology, and looked at program sizes, in regards to the quantity of courses, faculty, students and credit hours.

Rogers said many believe, including him, that the interaction across multidisciplinary and administrative lines has been an issue on campus that has stood in the way of NSU operations and students’ experiences.

“The question is how we use our administrative structure to ensure that students get the best experience possible, to get the best education possible, so they can focus mostly on the educational experience they came here for and not have to deal with other worries,” Rogers said. “That’s what we’re supposed to do as an institution.”

Farquhar College Dean Don Rosenblum said that with these changes, NSU is looking to strengthen its reputation and advance the goals of President George Hanbury’s Vision 2020 by looking at ways to effectively structure academic programs so that undergraduate and graduate programs are closely associated.

“The larger reorganization helps to administratively align all of the diverse undergraduate programs more closely with the various graduate and professional schools, creating opportunities for undergraduate students to continue to work with the outstanding faculty,” Rosenblum said.

Rosenblum said this will create opportunities for undergraduate students to continue working with undergraduate faculty as well as graduate and professional students. In addition, students will not notice any major changes apart from the increased opportunities.

For a full list of the restructuring, visit nova.edu/massmail/presdesk/NSURealignmentofAcademicPrograms.pdf.

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