I have the honor of leading Rutgers during a watershed moment in its nearly 250-year history. Rutgers has expanded to include most schools and centers of the former University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. In so doing, we have added medical, dental, and other health-related schools to an already comprehensive public research university, enriching our traditional strengths in the arts and sciences and in professional programs such as law and business. At the same time, we are in the midst of a major capital construction program, funded in large part by New Jersey's 2012 bond act for higher education. We have also joined the Committee on Institutional Cooperation, the academic consortium that includes all members of the Big Ten Conference, offering Rutgers invaluable opportunities for teaching and research collaborations, library resource sharing, study abroad options, and joint purchasing arrangements with our fellow CIC members. The University has created a bold, five-year strategic plan to help us take full advantage of these historic developments.
The state task force that set in motion this historic transformation challenged Rutgers to become a great university: “New Jersey should have the Rutgers of its dreams, ranking among the best research universities in the country, indeed the world.” I am committed to helping Rutgers achieve this bold ambition. With our dedicated faculty, staff, and alumni, Rutgers will engage our students by creating exceptional learning environments, provide outstanding clinical healthcare for our patients, and conduct transformational research in service to New Jersey and the world.