The Right Remedy For New Jersey

New Jersey Elected Officials Are Praising The Plan:

Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D-West Deptford Township): “I think it is a great thing if we put everything into Rowan — if Rowan becomes a research university … The big thing for me is that Rowan becomes a research university and a medical school. If it is not a research university, it will be the only medical school in the country without a research designation.” (Jessica Driscoll, “Gov. Chris Christie supports merger of Rutgers-Camden and Rowan University to create South Jersey research university,” Gloucester County Times, 1/26/12)

Assembly Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver (D-Essex/Passaic): “As a start, I’m pleased to see that our demands on maintaining a strong hospital, health care and university presence in Newark were taken into consideration. (Speaker Oliver On UMDNJ Advisory Panel Report, Press Release, 1/25/12)

Senator Sandra Bolden Cunningham (D-Hudson): “University Hospital is a vital part of North Jersey’s communities. I am pleased that this hospital will stay a fixture of Newark and am hopeful that the UMDMJ Advisory Committee’s intentions are to maintain the current level of services provided by University Hospital for the residents of the region.” (Cunningham Statement On UMDMJ Committee Report, Press Release, 1/25/12)

Senator Donald Norcross (D-Camden/Gloucester): “Over the years, both Rowan University and Rutgers-Camden have successfully built strong local institutions with world-class reputations. Any proposal that strengthens both institutions and results in South Jersey finally receiving its fair share of higher education funding is worth our serious consideration.” (Senator Donald Norcross Statement On The Final Report Of The UMDNJ Advisory Committee, Press Release, 1/26/12)

Camden Mayor Dana Redd: “…said ‘upon first look,’ it could promote growth in the city’s university district and other areas, and that it could bolster the city’s position as a center for graduate studies in law, business and medicine.” (Jim Walsh, “Hearings sought on higher ed,” Asbury Park Press, 1/27/12)

Education And Business Leaders Call The Plan “Far-Sighted” And An “Economic Engine”:

Rowan Interim President Dr. Ali A. Houshmand: “It will enable us to do the many, many things we couldn't do before: graduate professional degree programs like medicine, public health, biomedical engineering … It's an exciting time.” (James Osborne, “Christie backs overhaul of N.J. university system,” Inquirer, 1/25/12)

  • "If we have sufficient resources, there are going to be potential for us to great things … We want to be a major economic engine.” (Geoff Mulvihill, “Christie seeks NJ higher education overhaul,”, Associated Press, 1/25/12)
  • "Having another major comprehensive research institution is good for the state.” (Nic Corbett and Jenna Portnoy, “Dramatic restructuring of N.J.'s university system would create 3 research campuses, The Star-Ledger, 1/26/12)

Rutgers President Richard McCormick: “…said gaining a medical school would serve New Jersey exceptionally well…” (Nic Corbett and Jenna Portnoy, “Dramatic restructuring of N.J.'s university system would create 3 research campuses, The Star-Ledger, 1/26/12)

  • “…was enthusiastic about Rutgers’ takeover of Robert Wood Johnson Medical Center and called the proposed realignment “far-sighted” in a letter to the Rutgers community. “It offers enormous potential to enhance education in the health sciences and other fields, increase federal funding, create new biomedical companies and jobs, improve access to the latest treatments for state residents, and reestablish New Jersey as a global leader in pharmaceuticals and biomedical science,” he wrote in the letter released this afternoon.” (Jason Method and Ken Serrano, “New state university proposed for Newark,” Daily Record, 1/26/12)

New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities spokesman Paul Shelly: “Having a medical school, a law school and a business school puts you in a new category with a new set of university peers to be measured against ...” (Nic Corbett and Jessica Calefati, “Christie plan for university reshuffling means another chapter for Rowan,” Star-Ledger, 1/30/12)

Cooper University Hospital Chief Executive Officer John Sheridan: "This is a once-in-a-generation thing… This part of the state has been underfunded for years in terms of higher education.” (James Osborne, “Christie backs overhaul of N.J. university system,” Inquirer, 1/25/12)

Kennedy Health System: “We look forward to working with Gov. Christie and others in implementing the recommendations ...” (Jim Walsh, “RU to become RU? Rowan may absorb Rutgers-Camden,” Courier-Post, 1/25/12)

Southern New Jersey Development Council President Marlene Z. Asselta: “The face of business and the condition of the economy in our part of the Garden State will be forever enhanced. The Southern New Jersey Development Council is looking forward to this new comprehensive research institution serving as another cylinder in the region's economic engine.

  • “While some may be concerned about the potential short-term ramifications of the merger, we expect the move to be beneficial for the region's businesses and communities.” (Marlene Z. Asselta, “Rowan-Rutgers merger will benefit region,” Burlington County Times, 2/1/12)

The Reorganization Plan Is “An Attractive Idea” That “Makes Sense”:

Star-Ledger: This grand plan to rearrange the scattered pieces of New Jersey’s university system comes at exactly the right time. … Gov. Chris Christie’s task force has proposed an attractive idea: remaking our universities to create three regional higher ed research hubs. … this restructuring could create a system that’s far more rational.” (Editorial, “Gov. Chris Christie's plan for N.J. higher ed is promising,” Star-Ledger, 1/29/12)

  • “Without the current mess of spread-out campuses and conflicted missions, we’d add allure for top researchers and donors. … We’ve got to attract more grant money, better pharmaceutical and biomedical researchers — and, of course, more jobs.” (Editorial, “Gov. Chris Christie's plan for N.J. higher ed is promising,” Star-Ledger, 1/29/12)

The Philadelphia Inquirer: “Gov. Christie's ringing endorsement Wednesday of a plan to have Rowan University take over the Camden campus of Rutgers University - while the University of Medicine and Dentistry merges with Rutgers - could jump-start hopes of making better sense of the state's sprawling higher-education network.” (Editorial, “Merger Will Benefit Region,” The Philadelphia Inquirer, 1/27/12)

  • “[T]he fact that a university realignment along the lines of the Christie plan has been debated so often shows the need for something to be done - with now being the time for Jersey officials to do the homework to get it right.” (Editorial, “Merger Will Benefit Region,” The Philadelphia Inquirer, 1/27/12)

Asbury Park Press: “There’s logic in seeking a fresh start for UMDNJ, a school still stained by past corruption and a reputation for being a patronage pit. It also makes sense to have the medical school in New Brunswick be part of Rutgers. It will add recognition and visibility to it and help Rutgers add to its prestige as a top-tier comprehensive research university by having one element — a medical school — that had been missing from its portfolio.” (Editorial, “Fully Air Rutgers, UMDNJ Plan,” Asbury Park Press, 1/29/12)

Burlington County Times: “Proponents of the merger believe the plan holds great promise for the region’s economy. And that makes sense. Increased access to education for area residents should equal a better-educated workforce, result in expanded business partnerships, and bring more businesses and jobs.” (Editorial, “Hearings On College Merger Are Important,” Burlington County Times, 2/3/12)

Press Contact:
Michael Drewniak
Kevin Roberts

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