History of the College

The College of Natural and Health Sciences was established on July 1, 2005. The result of a reorganization spurred by the University’s Charting the Future planning process, the College was created through the merger of biological, mathematical, and physical science disciplines formerly in the College of Arts and Sciences with a pre-existing College of Health and Human Sciences. A fundamental element of the University’s restructuring activity was the replacement of academic departments with schools, many of them larger and more complex than their predecessors, and each headed by a Director.

In the former College of Health and Human Sciences, the School of Human Sciences was created from the former Departments of Communication Disorders; Community Health and Nutrition; Criminal Justice; and Human Services. The School of Nursing and School of Sport and Exercise Science were carried over from that College into the new College of Natural and Health Sciences. The former Departments of Biological Sciences and Mathematical Sciences were designated as new Schools. The Departments of Chemistry, Earth Sciences, and Physics, previously three stand-alone units in the College of Arts and Sciences, merged to form the School of Chemistry, Earth Sciences, and Physics.

Subsequent to the College's establishment, several structural refinements were made.  In July 2008, the School of Chemistry, Earth Sciences and Physics was reorganized into two separate schools to form the School of Chemistry and Biochemistry and the School of Earth Sciences and Physics. In July 2009, Criminal Justice relocated from the College to form a new School with the Sociology program in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.  In 2010, following a campus-wide examination of its structure, the concept of academic departments was reinstituted, and the School of Chemistry and Biochemistry moved to department status on July 1, 2010. The School of Earth Sciences and Physics separated into two departments on July 1, 2013.  

With five schools, three departments and approximately 132 full-time faculty members, the College of Natural and Health Sciences constitutes the most complex as well as the largest of the University’s academic colleges by number of full-time faculty.

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