The New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities (NJASCU), based in Trenton, is a nonprofit higher education association serving New Jersey's nine state colleges and universities. The Association is a nongovernmental entity created by the State Legislature [NJSA 18A:64-45 et seq.] in 1985 to advance and support public higher education in New Jersey.
NJASCU's primary mission is to advocate higher education as a public good and the collective value of the state colleges/universities in serving the public interest and the State of New Jersey.
In fulfilling this purpose, NJASCU advises the executive and legislative branches of state government, and others on higher education policy. The Association achieves its mission by:
- Articulating how the state colleges/universities serve the public good through educational, social, and economic and workforce development;
- Providing research and information services to advance the policy and resource needs of the state colleges and universities;
- Helping to inform the state's policy agenda and meeting state goals for educational attainment and a strong economy;
- Enhancing, through collaborative efforts, the ability of the state colleges/universities to achieve effective institutional performance, autonomous governance and public accountability; and
- Convening forums of diverse constituencies to develop a common opinion about the value of public investment in higher education and the contributions of the state colleges/universities.
The Association's vision is to serve as the principal information resource about college opportunity, policy affecting the value of New Jersey public higher education, and the contributions of the nine state colleges and universities.
The Association is governed by an eighteen-member board, consisting of a trustee and the president of each institution; the board meets four times annually. The presidents serve as ex-officio, nonvoting members of the board; trustee members are appointed by and serve at the pleasure of their respective local boards.
The Association staff is headed by an executive director/CEO. As with member colleges/universities, board members work actively in association permanent and ad hoc committees. Expenses are defrayed through institutional membership dues, in accordance with state law and Association bylaws, and occasionally through private gifts and grants.
NJASCU continues to be viewed widely by all branches of government, the media and all political parties as a respected source of reliable information about higher education and a primary source of innovative ideas for higher education-related policy reform that helps advance New Jersey's state agenda in the public interest.