Message from Dean James W. Hughes


James W. Hughes

Welcome to the first electronic version of the Forum newsletter. We hope you find this format easy to use, informative and visually appealing. This new format is emblematic of the change that has been occurring at the Bloustein School since the beginning of the current school year.

There are important changes with our doctoral faculty in urban planning, who recently were ranked 7th in the nation for scholarly production in a survey of 375 research universities undertaken by The Chronicle of Higher Education. We are in the process of our largest ever faculty recruiting campaign, seeking to fill five full-time tenured or tenure-track positions. The positions will be in education policy and planning; health and environmental policy; urban and regional development; transportation planning and policy, and; workforce development. We are confident we will be able to further enrich our already deeply talented pool of faculty. Offsetting this positive development, however, I regret to announce that Dr. Richard Brail has retired as a fulltime faculty member, wrapping up a 30-year career at Rutgers. During that time, Richard headed the Urban Planning program on three occasions, served as founding director of the National Transit Institute, and brought the Hubert Humphrey Fellowship Program to the Bloustein School. Richard, however, will return each  fall to teach and to continue his research.

If you are planning your first visit to the Bloustein School since last summer, be prepared for further changes in the building. By virtue of the Heldrich Center’s move into its new headquarters across Livingston Avenue in Heldrich Plaza, we reorganized our own office space to better concentrate our centers, faculty and support staff. More facility changes are planned over the coming months. With our neighbors, the Mason Gross School of the Arts, we intend to upgrade our common entry lobby with a number of enhancements. Classroom improvements, additional studio space and an instructional computing classroom are also contemplated.

As you may already be aware, key change has taken place with the University’s management of alumni relations. President Richard L. McCormick has announced the creation of the Rutgers University Alumni Association (RUAA), a new volunteer organization that will include Rutgers graduates from all campuses. The Bloustein School Alumni Association will continue to exist, but now within the RUAA, and all of our current and future alumni automatically will become members of the RUAA. In addition, an alumni center or presence will be created on each of the three main campuses.

The new electronic format is part of a university-wide emphasis on increased budgetary efficiency, as well as to make Rutgers a “green” university.  Because of a more technologically-based student body, faculty, and staff, we are trying to go as "paperless" as possible, implementing, among others, a new on-line admissions process and using electronic courseware as part of instruction.

To make our new venture into this electronic format as successful as possible, please give us your feedback on the newsletter. Is it easy to navigate? Are there particular stories you found interesting? Are there other items you would like to see us include in the future? Let us know, by sending an email to


For additional information, contact (732) 932-5475 or Civic Square Building, 33 Livingston Avenue, New Brunswick, NJ, 08901.
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