Published December 1, 2019
A Message from Christopher Molloy, Ph.D
Chancellor, Rutgers University–New Brunswick
As a generous supporter of Rutgers University–New Brunswick, you help today’s students become tomorrow’s change makers. You enable world-class scholars and researchers to explore new ideas and make life-changing discoveries.
Thanks to donor support, Rutgers–New Brunswick prepares talented students for lives and careers of meaning, fuels New Jersey’s economic engine, and brings diverse people and ideas together to spur discovery and innovation. No matter their size, your gifts help make Rutgers the academic, health, and research powerhouse it is today.
I am pleased to present the following report, which provides a glimpse of how you and other donors are making an impact on the Rutgers community and beyond. Although this report features only a few of the funds our donors support, I hope you will take pride in knowing you help make a difference at Rutgers.
The Honors College Excellence Fund
Thanks in part to generous donors to the Honors College, Lauren Boone SAS’21 and four other Honors College students had a once-in-a-lifetime experience this past summer. Building on the skills they honed in the Honors College Forum, the interdisciplinary mission class required for all Honors College students, they participated in a joint humanitarian entrepreneurship academy at Lingnan University in Hong Kong.
Boone, a journalism and media studies major, and the other Honors College students spent three weeks in Hong Kong with students from around the world in intensive workshops on social innovation. Then they applied what they learned in Almaty, Kazakhstan, alongside community organizers on projects that enabled them to gain a deeper understanding of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
The opportunity “gave me the confidence to explore my own creativity, challenge my own perspectives, and step out of my comfort zone for the greater good,” Boone says. “Since coming back, I’ve never felt stronger as an individual and more able to cooperate and work with my peers to try to create an ideal learning environment at Rutgers.” These kinds of experiences, made possible by donor support, enable Rutgers students to expand the classroom into the world and, with peers from across the globe, effect positive change.
School of Engineering: The Richard Weeks Hall of Engineering
The 100,000-square-foot Richard Weeks Hall of Engineering, which opened in fall 2018, is a state-of-the-art learning environment featuring collaborative work spaces, smart classrooms, dedicated student space, and living laboratories. Designed to anchor the School of Engineering on the Busch campus and serve as a gateway for the engineering community, industry partners, and the public, the new building is named for Richard Weeks ENG’50. Weeks pledged $6 million toward the construction of the building, the first in the school’s history to be named for an alumnus. Other donors have also made gifts to support facilities within Weeks Hall, and their generosity is helping the School of Engineering create a state-of-the-art environment that is vital to students’ success.
“I applied to do a research project in Weeks Hall,” says Mariah Diaz ENG’21. “To my surprise, I was selected to be the first undergraduate to work with the new hydrologic transport and sediment flume. It was a great experience and not an opportunity I thought I would have so early in my college education. I learned a lot, not only about myself and my major, but also about what sets Weeks Hall apart from the other buildings on campus. Here, concepts we are learning in class can be brought to life through practical applications.”
Student Affairs: Community-Based Counseling
The community-based counseling practice, run by the Counseling, Alcohol, and Other Drug Assistance Program and Psychiatric Services, is a model of care in which counselors bring resources and support to student communities rather than anticipating that students will seek out resources on their own.
Services are rooted in an understanding of the local community, the university, and individual student needs. Counselors are placed within departments, professional schools, and cultural centers throughout campus. By embedding themselves in these spaces, counselors can build relationships, familiarity, comfort, and trust with the students, staff, and faculty in the community.
In 2019, the number of drop-in visits by students increased 24 percent over the previous year and the number of individual students seeking counseling rose 43 percent over the previous year. Donor support is crucial in enabling the community-based counseling services to meet student needs for effective mental health services.
The School of Arts and Sciences Scholarship Fund
The School of Arts and Sciences Scholarship Fund empowers students to focus on their education by relieving them of the financial stress that can weigh on many of them. Eighty-five percent of the school’s students receive financial aid. Scholarships provide access to high-quality education—and innumerable opportunities—for deserving students, enabling them to focus more on their studies.
Since 2017, students like Mohammed Abu SAS’22 have received an average award of $2,200 from the scholarship fund. “Receiving this scholarship allows me to come back next semester and focus on the quality of my work,” says Abu. “Thank you for your donations; because of you, I am able to focus on my education and on making my mark on this community. Hopefully in the future, I can do the same, change someone’s life, and give them the opportunity you gave me.”
The Cultivating Compassion Project
For 45 years, the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (GSAPP) has been at the forefront of preparing outstanding psychologists and providing psychological services to New Jersey’s communities.
The Cultivating Compassion Project, offered through the Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Clinic at GSAPP, provides low-cost therapy to children with ADHD and their families. This approach aims to improve children’s ability to regulate their emotions and behavior and helps them think more deeply about themselves and others.
Madelyn Silber GSAPP’19, who is working toward a doctorate in clinical psychology, received research funding from the project. “I am excited to continue to learn about and research psychodynamic approaches to treating children,” Silber says. “I am motivated to do this work because of the diverse populations of clients with whom I have worked at GSAPP and in communities in New Jersey and New York who courageously make real change in their lives.”