NJIT Faculty, Staff and Students
Robert A. Altenkirch
Saturday, April 9, 2011
UMDNJ Advisory Committee and Higher Education Council
As indicated in my January 6, 2011 message regarding the Higher Education Task Force Report Executive Orders, following release of the Report Governor Christie signed Executive Orders 51 ( and 52 ( creating the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey Advisory Committee and the Governor’s Higher Education Council, respectively. On April 4, 2011, Governor Christie appointed both the UMDNJ Advisory Committee and the Higher Education Council.

The UMDNJ Advisory Committee will examine medical education in the State and develop recommendations for its improvement.  The Advisory Committee will make recommendations, among others, on:

  • Whether UMDNJ’s Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and the School of Public Health should be merged with Rutgers University’s New Brunswick-Piscataway campuses;
  • Whether UMDNJ’s Newark-based schools should be merged with any of the senior public higher education institutions in Newark;
  • The role and mission of University Hospital in Newark; and
  • Whether NJIT should start its own medical school.

Members of the UMDNJ Advisory Committee are Dr. Sol J. Barer, Committee Chair, Executive Chairman of Celgene; Robert E. Campbell, former Vice Chairman of Johnson & Johnson; Joyce Wilson Harley, Esq., Essex County Administrator; Anthony J. Perno III, Esq., President & CEO of Cooper’s Ferry Development Association, Inc.; and Dr. Harold T. Shapiro, former President of Princeton University and the University of Michigan.  The Committee is to report their recommendations to the Governor by September 1, 2011. We would anticipate having an opportunity to provide input to the Committee as it deliberates.

The Governor’s Higher Education Council, whose establishment was recommended by the Higher Education Task Force, will serve as an advisory body to the Governor on all higher education matters and provide recommendations on statewide initiatives for New Jersey’s system of higher education. Members of the Council include John McGoldrick, Council Chair, who served on the Higher Education Task Force and is Chairman of Zimmer Holdings, Inc.; Anne Evans Estabrook, Council Vice Chair, CEO of Elberon Development Co.; Patricia Nachtigal, former Vice Chair of Rutgers's Board of Governors; John Wefing, Esq., Law Professor at Seton Hall University; and Dr. Richard Wellbrock, former Chairman of Raritan Valley Community College Board of Trustees and Chairman of Hilltop Community Bank of Summit.

As the work of the UMDNJ Advisory Committee and the Governor’s Higher Education Council progresses, we will provide updates periodically.