About

The College of Architecture and Design (CoAD) is comprised of School of Architecture and School of Art + Design. The College offers undergraduate degrees in architecture, digital design, industrial design and interior design as well as graduate degrees in architecture, infrastructure planning, and urban systems. The College of Architecture and Design is a comprehensive Design School located in a comprehensive research university. By studying design here, you will have ample opportunities for cross-pollination of ideas and interdisciplinary interaction. NJIT offers 126 degree programs through six professional schools and colleges. You can double major, design an interdisciplinary major, opt for an accelerated bachelor’s or master’s degree program, and cross-register at nearby schools such as Rutgers University–Newark.

History

In its more than thirty-five year existence, the College of Architecture and Design (CoAD) has played an important role in architectural education in New Jersey. The need for a public College of Architecture in New Jersey was recognized as early as 1958, when the New Jersey Society of Architects (NJSA) actively lobbied for its creation.

In 1972, the NJSA asked the AIA to appoint a National Advisory Committee to make recommendations for a public School of Architecture in New Jersey. The Committee subsequently recommended that the School be established in Newark. In 1973, the Newark College of Engineering submitted a formal proposal to the State Board of Higher Education. With the Board's approval, the New Jersey School of Architecture (NJSOA) was born.

By September of that year, the NJSOA established office space in temporary quarters in Tiernan Hall. In its first year, the School consisted of founding dean Harlyn Thompson, an administrative assistant, a secretary, and two work-study students. By the first full operating year (1974-75), the School had grown to include 240 full-time students and 8 faculty members, some of whom are still active today.

Accreditation was granted in 1978, following the graduation of the first class in 1977. Dean Thompson resigned in 1979 and was followed by Professor Barry Jackson, who was appointed acting dean and served until January, 1981. At that time, Sanford Greenfield was appointed dean and served for nearly ten years. The present dean, Urs Gauchat, was appointed in February, 1991.

Since its inception, the College of Architecture and Design has continuously built its academic, research, and technical strength. In addition to the initial accredited Bachelor of Architecture program, the School initiated other undergraduate and graduate programs to provide our students more educational opportunities, particularly for those interested in pursuing study in related fields.

  • 2008/09: Bachelor of Arts in Interior Design
  • 2008/09: Bachelor of Arts in Digital Design
  • 2005/06: Bachelor of Science in Industrial Design 
  • 1996/97: Master of Infrastructure Planning
  • 1984/85: Master of Architecture 
  • 1984/85: Master of Science in Architecture

Mission

Design is intrinsically an optimistic profession. As designers we aspire to better the conditions of human life – to elevate the spirit, stir the emotions, engage the intellect and improve the quality of human experience through intervention in the built environment at all scales. This is the spirit that infuses the graduate and undergraduate programs in architecture and design at the College of Architecture and Design.

The mission of the curriculum at both the undergraduate and graduate levels has been and will continue to be to prepare students with the skills and knowledge necessary for employment in a “generalized” design practice or pursue research immediately upon graduation.  To that end, the vision of CoAD is the creation and implementation of a new curriculum that addresses the changing technological and professional demands in the 21st century as well as satisfying the mandates required for accreditation by the National Architecture Accreditation Board (NAAB), Council on Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) and National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD.)

In order to fulfill this mission the New Jersey School of Architecture has developed into a more comprehensive College of Architecture and Design. Such expansion has diversified not only our program offerings but also attracts students with a wider variety of interests and aspirations. The College of Architecture and Design benefits from the experience and diversity they bring and the richness of their subsequent careers and contributions to society. The impetus for this change lay in the many unfulfilled educational needs within the State that could effectively be addressed by such a configuration. Equally compelling is the synergy created by building and maintaining parallel design programs. This provides enrichment and broader educational exposure for students and faculty alike.

Weston Hall

The current building for the College of Architecture and Design at the New Jersey Institute of Technology opened in 1998 as part of a larger construction and renovation project at NJIT. The 111,900 gross square-foot edifice was designed by the architectural firm, The Hillier Group of Princeton, NJ, and built at a cost of $26.6 million.

The new building is a southward extension of Weston Hall, a long building along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in the University Heights district of Newark. Access from the campus is along an elevated ramp from Summit Place, rising to a distinctive new entrance pavilion at the juncture of the old Weston Hall and the new extension. A soaring "kinetic" atrium at the entrance connects the old and new buildings while preserving the identity of each. Inside the atrium, a hub of function and activity, is the connection between all floors. From the entry, one can see the gallery, studio, library, teaching spaces and the administrative offices. In contrast to the old Weston Hall, the new building enjoys openness, and from within the large complex, offers long views of the two major cities of Newark and New York beyond.

It provides an educational environment that makes it a pleasure in which to teach and learn. The building really makes a statement from within, and statement about NJIT in regards to its relationship with the City of Newark, one of the architectural concepts that gave rise to the building form was its presence as a lantern on the hill. Students are working around the clock, so the building is illuminated at all hours.

Conceptually the building was developed by architect Alan Chimacoff (a member of the Professional Advisory Board), the chief designer of The Hillier Group, along with a faculty committee from the School of Architecture. "All can be seen as dynamic, angular and kinetic in contrast to the measured regimentation of old Weston and to the systematic arrangements of the new studio building. Here the contrast between the regular and irregular, between normative thesis and antithetical counterproposal is joined in a dialog that simultaneously reveres and challenges convention," said Chimacoff.