Animal agriculturists in the state of New Jersey face problems and challenges unique to the Garden State. Through its teaching, research, and extension activities, the Department of Animal Sciences is committed to keeping New Jersey animal agriculture and related industries highly competitive by providing the latest technologies and problem solutions. The faculty constitute a cohesive, yet diverse body, implementing novel ideas in molecular biology in animal science research while at the same time maintaining their understanding of practical on-farm problems such as controlling parasites and pests, feeding and nutrition, and optimizing growth and well-being in animals. The Department of Animal Sciences at Rutgers University is the only academic department in New Jersey that serves animal agriculture.
Over 300 upper class students are enrolled in the undergraduate program. Each year approximately 90 first-year students and 25 transfer students declare Animal Sciences as their major. The curriculum is designed to train students for the diversity of career options available upon graduation and to prepare them for postgraduate training. Curriculum options for Animal Sciences majors include Preveterinary Medicine/Research, Laboratory Animal Science, Production Animal Science, Equine Science and Companion Animal Science. Minors in Animal Science, Equine Science, Companion Animal Science, and Endocrine Physiology and Health Sciences are also offered.
The Graduate Program in Endocrinology and Animal Biosciences offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees. both degrees emphasize research training. In addition to faculty from Rutgers and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, members of the Program come from research divisions of local pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. Our graduate training emphasizes various aspects of endocrine physiology at the organismal, cellular and molecular levels. Major areas of research include: endocrinology of growth, lactation, and reproduction; neuroendocrinology and immune function; equine science; exercise physiology; and sustainable animal agriculture.
Animal commodity groups look to the University and Extension faculty for leadership in addressing problems critical to animal agriculture. The most economically important animal agriculture commodity in New Jersey is the equine industry. New Jersey farmers face problems not seen in other areas of the country because of the dense human and wildlife population and the high costs of land and labor. To this end, three full-time Extension faculty have met the needs of the animal industries with increasing support from these industries, as well as agricultural groups such as the State Board of Agriculture, Farm Bureau, and Division of Animal Health.