Thomas Edison State University
Founded 1972, Trenton
Thomas Edison State University (TESU) has a national reputation for academic excellence and educational integrity. Established by the state of New Jersey and chartered by the New Jersey Board of Higher Education in1972, the university was founded for the purpose of providing diverse and alternative methods of achieving a collegiate education of the highest quality for mature adults.
With the campus’ six buildings located in the historic district surrounding the state capitol building in Trenton, TESU is one of New Jersey’s senior public institutions of higher education and one of the first schools in the country designed specifically for adults. Through the New Jersey State Library’s affiliation with the university, students have access to library resources and services, including electronic access to online journals, eBooks, downloadable audio books, research guides and premium databases as well as full text articles from newspapers, magazines and scholarly academic journals that can also be downloaded. Dr. Merodie A. Hancock became the fourth president of the University in March 2018.
True to its mission, the university provides distinctive undergraduate and graduate education for self-directed adults through flexible, high-quality collegiate learning and assessment opportunities. The entire academic program at TESU revolves around the needs of adults, removing the barriers that limit many adult students who cannot sacrifice their personal and professional responsibilities to pursue their education.
The university’s more than 15,200 students can earn degrees through a wide variety of rigorous and high-quality academic methods that can be customized to meet their individual needs, including online courses, guided independent study, examination programs, courses delivered via mobile devices as well as by maximizing the transfer of credits earned from other regionally accredited institutions, earning credit for professional and/or military training, and demonstrating college-level knowledge acquired outside a traditional classroom through prior learning assessment. For more than 40 years, TESU has been providing specialized educational opportunities for members of the United States military, veterans and first responders that optimize their training and experience.
A national leader in the assessment of adult learning, the university is a pioneer in the use of educational technologies. Identified by The New York Times as the “college that paved the way for flexibility,” TESU offers associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs in more than 100 areas of study as well as undergraduate, graduate and professional certificates through its four schools: Heavin School of Arts, Sciences, and Technology; School of Business and Management; W. Cary Edwards School of Nursing; and John S. Watson School of Public Service. TESU is also home to The John S. Watson Institute for Public Policy, which is designated to deepening the analysis around critical public policy challenges and broadening the range of policy ideas, perspectives and options.
Updated April 2020