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New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities

150 West State Street

Trenton, New Jersey 08608

609-989-1100 office

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Quick Takes are current brief updates on legislative and policy issues being followed by NJASCU.

Current and Previously Featured "Quick Takes" are below:

Kean University Inspires Dialog on Race and Justice Through an Oral History Project

September 18, 2017

Kean University professor Abigail Perkiss is a historian whose research focuses on the history of race and urban space in her native city, Philadelphia.  Professor Perkiss recently partnered with student performers from Philadelphia's Hip H'Opera on an oral history project that was part of the development of We Shall Not Be Moved, which premiered September 16 at Philadelphia's Wilma Theater.

We Shall Not Be Moved tells the story of five North Philly teens who seek refuge from the police in an abandoned house in West Philadelphia that once served as the headquarters of the MOVE organization.  MOVE was a Philadelphia-based group founded in 1972 with the mission of agitating for racial justice and against police brutality.  A 1985 standoff at MOVE headquarters infamously ended with a neighborhood destroyed and 11 people dead, including five children.  Read full story here.

Stockton President Responds to Richard Stockton Controversy on Campus

 August 28, 2017


The following message was sent to the Stockton University community on August 28, 2017, and is also posted on the Stockton website.


Dear Members of the Stockton Community,


Over the past few days, I have been reading many emails, fielding calls, and listening to the wide range of viewpoints expressed by our Stockton and surrounding communities.


The decision to temporarily remove the bust of Richard Stockton from our Library entrance has created the opportunity to engage in a discussion of the man, his role in America’s history, and how we might remember him today.


Accounts of the desecration and destruction of historical statues fill our news, and reminds us that our nation is struggling with accepting multiple points of view, with interpreting facts, and with finding common ground.


We are hopeful that through the development of the Richard Stockton Exhibit we will demonstrate that difficult issues can be dealt with in a way that strengthens and unites us. 

Read the full message here.

William Paterson University President Kathleen Waldron to Retire at End of 2017-2018 Academic Year

 August 22, 2017


Kathleen Waldron, who has led strategic initiatives that have enhanced academics and infrastructure at William Paterson University, has announced that she will retire at the end of the 2017-2018 academic year, thus completing eight years as president of the institution.


“I will turn 70 years old in September 2018 and have had the great honor of being an academic administrator for 20 years,” said President Waldron, who became the institution’s seventh president on August 2, 2010.  “The last seven years at William Paterson University have been the best of my career.  We have accomplished so much, and I hope that the advances we made together are of lasting benefit to the students we serve.  I am extremely grateful to have the support of an engaged Board of Trustees that cares deeply about this institution and its success, as well as Cabinet members who capably lead their divisions and provide sound advice and counsel.  The faculty members continue to provide outstanding instruction and mentorship to our students while pursuing individual research and creative endeavors.  Our dedicated staff provides the day-to-day academic and business support that keeps the University going and thriving.”


The University’s Board of Trustees has launched a national search for a new president.  President Waldron plans to retire effective June 30, 2018.

Read more here.

Stockton Reaches Beyond Atlantic City to Connect with Panama in a Language Training Initiative

August 15, 2017

Stockton University has been approved by the Panamanian Ministry of Education to offer training to teachers from Panama as part of the government’s Bilingue Initiative.


The University has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Universidad Latina de Panama to expand opportunities for Stockton students to study in Panama.


The Panama Bilingue initiative is a national effort to improve public education and economic development in the country by increasing the English language fluency of its citizens.  Read more here.

A Little Research Reveals a Lot of Research at NJASCU Schools
NJASCU QuickTakes
July 17, 2017

The New Jersey Association of State College and Universities asked its members to provide one example of a significant research initiative taking place on their respective campuses. Even though some schools just provided one example, other schools provided several. One administrator said, “we couldn’t decide which project was more important.” All the projects are significant and impressive and illustrative of the fact that the NJASCU schools have extensive research portfolios.  Read more here.

TCNJ’s Barbara Gitenstein Will Retire in June 2018, After 19 Years as President

 July 11, 2017

The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) President R. Barbara Gitenstein, the first woman to serve as the school’s president, announced at the July 11 meeting of the college’s board of trustees that she will retire in June 2018 at the conclusion of the coming academic year.  It will mark the end of a nearly 20-year tenure, the third longest in the college’s 162-year history.  She is the first woman to serve as president.


“This was not a decision I arrived at easily, but the timing is right for the institution, for my family and for me,” said Dr. Gitenstein, who assumed office on January 1, 19999.  “It has been the highlight of my professional career to have served as president of this extraordinary institution.”


“With deep respect and admiration, the board of trustees has accepted President Gitenstein’s intention to retire,” said Jorge Caballero, chair of the board.  “Under Dr. Gitenstein’s leadership, the college has continued to pursue a path of excellence ….”  Read more here.

Stockton Receives Additional 168 State-Funded Positions for Atlantic City Campus
July 7, 2017

The number of state-funded positions for FY 2018 for Stockton University increased from 764 to 932. The funding will cover pension and healthcare benefit costs for the additional 168 positions, allowing the university to hire faculty, security personnel and operational staff essential for the future Atlantic City campus.

“This represents the largest increase in our central appropriation in Stockton’s history and equates to an additional $4 million to our FY 2018 operating budget,” said President Harvey Kesselman.

Dr. Kesselman acknowledged Senator Whelan and Assemblyman Mazzeo, the primary sponsors of the Budget Resolution, and Senators Connors, Van Drew, and Beach and Assemblypersons Brown, Gove, Rumpf, and Singleton who all strongly supported Stockton’s increase. Significantly, Stockton received bi-partisan support from both northern and southern New Jersey legislators throughout this very difficult budget process.  Read more here.

Historic Kean University Celebrates Immigrants as They Make History as New Citizens
July 7, 2017

At historic Liberty Hall Museum at Kean University, 33 new Americans made history of their own, taking their Oath of Allegiance at a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ naturalization ceremony on Tuesday, June 20. The new citizens come from 18 countries across five continents – Africa, Asia, Europe, North America and South America.

Kean President Dawood Farahi, PhD, welcomed the soon-to-be-American-citizens to the University, calling them “beautiful people from beautiful parts of the world” as he recalled his own story as a naturalized U.S. citizen from Afghanistan.

“I was sitting in the same seat as you are in 1976,” he said to warm applause. “You will never be disappointed in being an American.”

John Kean, the president of Liberty Hall Museum at Kean University, gave a brief overview of the history of the mansion, the 245-year-old home of New Jersey’s first-elected governor William Livingston. He noted that several presidents, including George Washington on his way to his first inauguration in New York City, visited Liberty Hall.  Read more here.

Dr. Henry Pruitt, Jr., Serving on William Paterson University Board for 33 Years, Retires and is Named Trustee Emeritus
June 19, 2017

Dr. Henry J. Pruitt, Jr., who is retiring from the William Paterson University Board of Trustees after 33 years of service, has been named trustee emeritus by the board. He is the longest-serving board member in the University’s modern history.

Dr. Pruitt, who joined the William Paterson board in 1983, has served in numerous leadership roles, including chair of the board from 1991 to 1993, and chair of several key committees, including the Educational Policy and Student Development Committee, the Finance and Audit Committee, the Minority Affairs Committee, and the Personnel and Compensation Committee. Beyond the University, Dr. Pruitt served as chairman of the board of the New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities (NJASCU), the agency that advocates on behalf of public higher education in New Jersey.

“I leave this college in good hands and I am confident that any issues of concern that might arise will be handled efficiently and effectively,” said Dr. Pruitt. “I wish William Paterson University the best and I will be watching as this institution continues to prosper in the future.”  Read more here.

Kean’s New College of Liberal Arts Shines Spotlight on Developing Critical Thinking Skills
June 19, 2017

Kean University recently launched a new College of Liberal Arts, encompassing programs formerly under the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and the College of Visual and Performing Arts. The College reflects Kean’s dedication to student success and to liberal arts education as a core component of any undergraduate degree program.

The Kean University College of Liberal Arts will provide current and future generations of students with affordable access to a liberal arts education. Areas of study include journalism, English, psychology, history, political science, sociology, economics and the performing and fine arts.  Read more here.

Thomas Edison State University President Pruitt is Retiring after 35 Years of Service to the University

 June 8, 2017


Thomas Edison State University’s (TESU) longtime president, Dr. George A. Pruitt, effective December 31, 2017, after 35 years of leading New Jersey’s only college or university dedicated exclusively to serving adults.  Under his leadership, the university helped redefine higher education in the U.S. and made degree completion more accessible for working adults, including active duty military service members and other nontraditional learners.


He will take a year’s sabbatical in 2018 and then serve as a distinguished fellow at TESU’s John S. Watson School of Public Service and Continuing Studies.


“Serving as president of this wonderful university has been the single greatest privilege of my professional life,” Dr. Pruitt said in a prepared statement.  “I have no words to express my appreciation to the trustees, past and present, as well as my colleagues who have joined in the work of transforming the lives of the students we serve.”


Brian Maloney, chair of the board of trustees, said the board will form a committee that will oversee a nationwide search for a successor.  Dr. Pruitt formally notified the board of his retirement earlier this week, according to a TESU statement.


“It is hard to imagine Thomas Edison State University without George Pruitt as our president,” Mr. Maloney said in a statement.  “The impact that he has made on our university and on higher education in this country is extraordinary.  We are grateful for Dr. Pruitt’s remarkable leadership and his record of accomplishment over the past 35 years.”  Read more here.

Stockton is Responding to Big Data in a Big Way – a New Master’s in Data Science and Strategic Analytics
June 8, 2017

Harnessing “Big Data” – the vast sea of digital information generated daily by business, science, entertainment and education – is a challenge but also an opportunity, and Stockton University is launching a new degree program this fall to prepare graduates for this fast-growing field.

The first classes for the Master of Science in Data Science and Strategic Analytics within the School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (NAMS) will be held in September with approximately 12 students to start and enrollment is expected to grow to a maximum of 25 in future years.

“This new program is an excellent example of how Stockton is staying current to best serve our students and prepare them for the world in which we live,” said Lori Vermeulen, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. “Big data is everywhere and knowing how to use massive amounts of data in meaningful ways is a vital skill.”
Read more here.

Decline in Number of NJ High School Grads Seeking College Degree Should be Alarming for New Jersey Leaders

The following column by Darryl Greer appeared as an op-ed in NJSpotlight.com on Friday, June 2, 2017.

Darryl G. Greer, PhD, is senior fellow for Higher Education Strategic Information and Governance at the William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy of Stockton University.

June 2, 2017

New Jersey will experience about a 20 percent decline in the number of high school graduates through 2030, according to a recent report, “Knocking at the College Door,” by the Western Interstate Commission on Higher Education (WICHE). That will mean a drop to 90,000 from a current high of about 111,000 graduates annually, and more of these students will be from lower-income families and less-prepared academically for college.

That has important economic consequences for colleges, students, businesses, and the state – which need to be considered, now. Historically, 70 percent to 80 percent of New Jersey high school graduates enroll in college. Obviously, fewer students paying tuition places stress on colleges’ financial operations. This is especially true, because about 70 percent of public colleges’ revenue comes from student tuition and fees. Add to this increasing competition for New Jersey students from surrounding states, such as Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Massachusetts, which also face declining enrollments. Pile on another dilemma in a no-growth environment: New Jersey already leads the nation as the number one net exporter of college-bound students. We lose about 30,000 students annually to other states. Regional competition for well-prepared New Jersey students who are able to pay for college will be at an all-time high. Not every university in the state can compete effectively for students in this environment.  Read more here.

Stockton Rated in Top 25 in Nation by Student Loan Report for Financial Aid to First Year Students
June 2, 2017

Stockton University is ranked #25 in the nation by the Student Loan Report’s Top 250 Public Colleges that Offer Freshmen the Most Financial Aid Report.

The Student Loan Report analyzed hundreds of public colleges in the United States and selected the top 250. These schools were evaluated based solely on the average financial aid awarded to freshmen, the group said. Financial aid is defined in this report as the average financial aid package awarded to need-based, degree-seeking, full-time freshmen.

Stockton’s average financial aid package for first-time, full-time freshmen is $17,355. About 86 percent of Stockton students receive some form of financial aid.

The data was compiled for the Common Data Set and used by this publisher. The Common Data Set is a standard for undergraduate institutions used by publishers of admission guides and others seeking basic information about colleges and universities. The Common Data Set is a collaboration of the College Board, U.S. News and World Report, publishers Wintergreen/Orchard House, and many institutions of higher education.  Read more here.

2017 Quick Takes

Kean Industrial Design Students Gain Fame by Growing New Products with Mushroom® Materials - May 23, 2017

Stockton Aviation Research and Technology Park Takes Off - May 16, 2017

Stockton's President to Help Formulate a New National Statement on Shared Governance - April 28, 2017

NJASCU CEO Michael Klein Leads a Discussion about State Support of Higher Education Institutions - April 21, 2017

Stockton University Breaks Ground on its $178 Million Atlantic City Residential Campus as Part of Atlantic City's Gateway Project - April 20, 2017

Recession is Long Gone, So Where's the Money for NJ Colleges? - April 13, 2017

NJCU Presidential Speaker Series Features Renowned Biologist Dr. Bonnie Bassler - April 12, 2017

An Interview with Mike Klein- Starving the Beast, Endangering the Future - April 6, 2017

Stockton Poll Finds that New Jersey Residents Give Low Marks to Trump Administration So Far - April 5, 2017

Barbara Harmon-Francis Articulates Passionate Support for NJ Educational Opportunity Fund Program - March 21, 2017

William Paterson University Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Its Nursing Program - March 20, 2017

NJCU Launches Master's Degree in Business Analytics and Data Science - March 17, 2017

Kean University Introduces Minor in Sustainability Sciences - March 16, 2017

Montclair State Receives $1.1 Million NSF Grant for Innovative Teacher Training Program - March 6, 2017

WPU is a "WilliamPaterson Safe" Campus for Immigrants Regardless of Immigration Status - March 5, 2017

Stockton Poll Finds Strong Distrust of News Media Among New Jersey Adults - March 6, 2017

NJCU is Chosen for Participation in National Initiative on Student Success - February 21, 2017

Op-Ed:  Deepening Our Commitment to Public Purposes of Higher Ed - Kathleen Waldron - February 16, 2017

NJCU Launches Master's Degree in Business Analytics and Data Science - February 2, 2017

Stockton University to Host First 'StockHack' on February 18-19 - January 31, 2017

Kudos to Mercer County Leaders on Educational Attainment - January 20, 2017

Give Us a Break - N.J. Tax Breaks Total at Least $23.5 Billion, According to Stockton's Public Policy Center - January 2017

2016 Quick Takes

Kean University Student-Athlete Invited to Major League Soccer Scouting Event - December 21, 2016

Guest Column:  The Importance of Institutional Researchers to Policymaking - Michael Klein - December 1, 2016

William Paterson Senior is a First Place Winner in the National Sales Challenge at WPU - December 1, 2016

Stockton Students Win Honors at National Model United Nations Event in Japan - November 30, 2016

William Paterson University Jazz Series Features Alumnus Justin Kauflin - November 17, 2016

Stockton Faculty Research:  Civics Lessons in College Could Increase Political Participation - November 17, 2016

NJ Higher Education Policy Expert Questions Poll Findings About College Value - November 14, 2016

Stockton Expands Health Science Program in Ocean County - November 14, 2016

William Paterson University President Waldron Inspires All to Exercise the Precious Right to Vote - November 7, 2016

Stockton Poll Puts Clinton Ahead of Trump in New Jersey and Indicates Thumbs Down to Casino Expansion - October 7, 2016

William Paterson University Has Civic Engagement in its DNA - October 6, 2016

Making College Affordable Through Generosity:  WPU Receives $200,000 in Scholarship Money from Give Back Foundation - September 29, 2016

Stockton Celebrates Its Roots, Trunk and Branches with the Inauguration of President Harvey Kesselman - September 26, 2016

Kean University Researchers Use Augmented Reality to Recreate Historic Event - September 27, 2016

Kean Ocean Celebrates 10 Years of a Successful Academic Partnership - September 27, 2016

Ramapo's Krame Center for Mindful Living Partners with UMass Medical School's Center for Mindfulness - September 21, 2016

Stockton University Receives Prestigious National Award for Sustainability - September 20, 2016

NJCU Launches Center for the Arts as a Creative Umbrella - September 8, 2016

Kean Psy.D. Program Gets Prestigious Accreditation - August 30, 2016

New Documentary on Paterson and Its People by William Paterson University Professor Vincent Parrillo Will Air on NJTV - August 30, 2016

International Educator Ed Petkus is Ramapo's New Dean of Business School - August 20, 2016

Thomas Edison State University Executive Receives Prestigious Honor from NJBiz - August 17, 2016

The Noyes Museum of Art Becomes Part of Stockton University - August 17, 2016

Stockton MS in Communication Disorders Earns Five-Year Accreditation - August 11, 2016

Research from WPU Professor Reveals Blatant Health Violation at Majority of NYC Nail Salons - August 9, 2016

Stockton Plans Art Exhibit on Economic Inequality - August 4, 2016

Stockton Receives $380,000 Federal Grant for Brain Research - August 1, 2016

Ramapo College Recognized for Innovative Student Retention Initiative - July 28, 2016

Kean University to Launch Three New Master's Degree Programs - July 28, 2016

Newark Black Film Festival Honors Legacy of NJCU Professor Lee Hagan - July 28, 2016

Kean University Aluma Leaves $1.7 Million Posthumous Gift - Millions More May be Forthcoming - July 25, 2016

NJCU Names Interim Dean as Business School's Founding Dean - July 21, 2016

Artwork of Kean Professor is Featured in Smithsonian Museum Exhibit, Washington DC - July 20, 2016

NJCU Appoints a Transformative Leader as Dean of Its College of Arts and Sciences - July 20, 2016

Ramapo College Wins National Grant to Support the Jane Addams Papers Project - July 7, 2016

Kean University Cybersecurity Center Hosts Its Inaugural Event on Ransomware - June 28, 2016

Stockton President Outlined Stockton's Atlantic City Campus Plans at Alliance for Action Event - June 8, 2016

New Jersey City University and NJTV Announce Broadcasting Partnership - June 7, 2016

Stockton Hughes Center Research:  Demographic Profile of NJ Legislature Remains Basically Unchanged - and Unrepresentative of Constituents - May 31, 2016

William Paterson University Music Professor Mixes It Up with Art and Athleticism - May 27, 2016

New Jersey City University Hosts Prestigious International Business Conference, June 3-4, 2016 - May 16, 2016

Darryl G. Greer, Higher Education Strategic Information and Governance (HESIG) Symposium May 9, 2016

Kean University Honors 2016 Distinguished Alumni - May 9, 2016

WPU Professor Robin Schwartz Honored with 2016 Guggenheim Fellowship for Distinguished Accomplishment in Photography - April 11, 2016

Captain Mark Kelly and Entrepreneur Brandon Stanton are Commencement Speakers for Kean University April 8, 2016

Darryl Greer at Stockton's Hughes Center Authors "Measuring College Outcomes" based on a Poll of Recent College Graduates - April 1, 2016

Terrorism Expert Speaking at Stockton on Eve of Terror in Belgium  Urges Moderating Political Rhetoric - March 22, 2016

WPU Commits to a National Campaign to Advance Women Leaders in Higher Education - March 18, 2016 

Montclair State University Meets Criteria of a "Hispanic-Serving Institution" - March 10, 2016

Stockton University Takes on a Prominent Voice in TED Talks Initiative - March 4, 2016

William Paterson University Explores the Complexity of Humans and Nature Coexisting with One Another - March 4, 2016

New Jersey City University Offers Debt-Free Promise Program for New Jersey Residents with Family Incomes of $60,000 or Less - February 23, 2016

Thomas Edison State University Makes Creative Collaboration the Basis of a Quality, Affordable, Dual-Admission Nursing (BSN) Program - February 22, 2016 

Stockton University's Hughes Centers Enlightens Homeowners on the Risks of Reverse Mortgages - February 17, 2016 

Stockton President Harvey Kesselman Receives National Recognition for "Giving Back" to his Campus and Community -

February 16, 2016

Montclair State University Earns Research Doctoral University Designation from Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education - February 2, 2016 

Stockton University and New Jersey City University are the only New Jersey Institutions Selected for AASCU's New Project to Redesign Students' First-Year College Experience - February 2, 2016 

Thomas Edison State University Launches its First Doctoral Program - January 28, 2016 

Stockton Pursues Significant Higher Education Initiatives in Atlantic City and on the Galloway Campus, Thanks to Showboat Sale and Other Fiscal Developments - January 21, 2016 

William Paterson University Opens $40 Million Health Sciences Education Academic Building - January 13, 2016 

Thomas Edison State College Makes the Grade - and Becomes a University - January 11, 2016 

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