Message From the Provost: December 2021

A Landmark First Semester

My first semester as Provost has flown by. I am grateful to all of you for welcoming me and I am grateful for the efforts of our faculty and staff that enabled us to return to on-campus instruction, and I am hopeful that we can have a safe and successful conclusion to the semester.Provost Jianmin QuDr. Jianmin Qu, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost

Despite the uncertainty and trepidation with which we all began this academic year, the fall 2021 semester has seen Stevens continue its rise.

We began the year by welcoming 26 new full-time faculty members – including me – and an incoming class that is the largest, most diverse and accomplished in Stevens’ history. And as the semester continued, we reached several milestones:

  • We announced that Stevens has set a university record for research funding. In fiscal year 2021, which concluded June 30, total research awards totaled $50.6 million — eclipsing the previous year's record mark by more than $4 million.

  • Despite continued uncertainty about the effects of the pandemic, enrollments reached record levels. Fall 2021 graduate and undergraduate enrollment each now top 4,000 students, with total enrollment of nearly 8,300. We met our target for graduate student full-time equivalent enrollments (FTEs) a year ahead of the target date in our strategic plan.

  • And we celebrated the illumination of the Stevens sign atop the University Center Complex, signaling the start of a new era and new visibility for our university.

Most importantly, our strategic planning process has moved to a new phase. Early this fall, President Nariman Farvardin announced the formation of the Strategic Planning Steering Committee, a panel drawn from across the Stevens community. The Steering Committee is charged to develop a roadmap that will guide Stevens for the next 10 years. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the committee members for their time and effort in carrying out this important responsibility.

The Steering Committee received invaluable input from members of the community in a November town hall meeting, and from Stevens alumni in a similar event this week. This input, plus ideas and opinions submitted in future events, among them a January town hall, will help the committee review, prioritize and further develop the goals and metrics that will be central to the 2022-2032 strategic plan.

I invite you all to review the video and slides from the November town hall and to provide your input as the strategic planning process moves forward.

I came to Stevens less than four months ago, but already it feels like home. I am grateful to those of you whom I have worked with thus far and I look forward to meeting more members of our community as the year continues.

With the entire team in the Office of the Provost, I look forward to working with our deans, department and faculty leaders to empower all members of the academic community to reach their potential.

Best wishes for the holiday season!