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New Jersey Institute of Technology has been ranked among the best colleges for biology students in the U.S., according to College Factual’s recently released “2019 Best Biology Colleges” rankings.

The new rankings indicate that NJIT’s degree programs in biology place in the top 15 percent of all general biology programs offered in the country, improving the university’s national position 82 slots over the past year. The new rankings also recognize NJIT as having one of the top five biology programs in New Jersey.

“I am pleased, but not surprised, because NJIT has invested strongly in biological teaching and research over the last decade,” said Gareth Russell, chair of NJIT’s Department of Biological Sciences. “[The rankings] validate NJIT’s decision to renovate our historic Central King Building into a state-of-the-art research and teaching facility for biological sciences — the design of which incorporated faculty input from the very beginning. It also reflects NJIT’s commitment to faculty hiring, with the Department of Biological Sciences faculty tripling over the last few years.”

College Factual’s 2019 rankings surveyed general biology programs offered at 820 four-year colleges and universities nationwide. Scoring assessment was based on performance indicators such as education quality, average earnings of graduates, accreditation and a variety of other factors.

In its assessment, College Factual’s 2019 rankings cited PayScale survey data, finding that NJIT graduates with a degree in biology earn above the national average in early-career salary, and are also projected to make nearly 12 percent more than the national average in terms of mid-career salary.

“A majority of our biology students are pursuing health-related professions, and we are able to offer those students what I describe as a ‘boutique’ pre-health advising experience, with personalized attention and an in-depth application preparation sequence,” said Russell. “This, coupled with our students’ hard work, results in an outstanding acceptance rate to medical, dental and other health professional programs.”

The Department of Biological Sciences at New Jersey Institute of Technology — housed within NJIT’s College of Science and Liberal Arts — is federated with Rutgers University-Newark, offering a number of joint degrees including a B.A., B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. in biology. Faculty carries out state-of-the-art research and instruction at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Research programs are supported by federal, state and private funds, including grants from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the Binational Science Foundation, the National Park Service, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, the Minority Academic Careers Program and more.