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Rutgers-Rowan Discussion Forum

Post your comments, photos and videos regarding the proposed merger of Rutgers University-Camden and Rowan University here.

Tell us what you think about the proposed merger of Rutgers University-Camden and Rowan University, recently announced by Gov. Christopher J. Christie. 

Whether you're an alumnus, employee, current student at either school or simply someone who has an opinion about the propsoal, we want to hear your thoughts. 

Please adhere to Patch's Terms of Use when posting. Inappropriate posts will be removed, and the accounts of commenters who violate the terms will be deleted. 

gurb February 13, 2012 at 03:23 PM
US News and World Report actually ranks Rowan above Rutgers Camden. Rutgers Camden gets a regional ranking as does Rowan and is not included with the Rutgers NB listing on that site.
Sarah February 14, 2012 at 12:20 AM
As a Rutgers-Camden student, I am opposed to the merger. It's not because I think Rowan is a bad school. I have many friends were graduated from Rowan and have successful careers. In my opinion, this merge would leave the entire city of Camden behind as well. R-C does a lot to benefit the city of Camden. It seems unreasonable to think the student body would be maintained if the merge went through. I, for example, would attend the Glassboro campus of Rowan rather than a Camden campus. From discussions I've had with other students, I am not the only one to have this sentiment. Also, what about diversity in education? Why should non-traditional South Jersey students be limited to essentially ONE choice for higher education?
Sarah February 14, 2012 at 12:25 AM
I personally don't see how this merger would benefit Camden. As far as I'm concerned, progress R-C has made in the city of Camden would regress. Think about it. Rowan and R-C are 20 miles away. How many students will choose a Camden campus of Rowan vs. the Glassboro campus? (especially when the Glassboro campus is much closer) I think not many. If the students don't attend the Camden campus, who will serve the city Camden?
jmr0612 February 14, 2012 at 06:59 PM
Sarah... my thoughts exactly. This should not be about which school is better... that's a matter of opinion based on a number of factors. I think taking away a university option does nothing to benefit southern NJ and nothing to "ignite" the economy. I have yet to hear any convincing arugment about why this would result in more research money. Rutgers does a lot for the Camden community. The law school provides legal assistant and Gloria Bonilla-Santiago, Ph.D., a Rutgers professor is a founder of the LEAP academy in Camden. Having lived in Glassboro for a number of years I can assure you that Rutgers has done more for Camden than Rowan has done for Glassboro... but that's another topic. We should not be making this about which school is better, but about why the voters of the southern part of NJ should have to settle for less. Keep Rutgers and Rowan they way the are! The state should be investing in higher education, not removing options
Tim Zatzariny Jr. (Editor) February 14, 2012 at 10:14 PM
Rowan has a new FAQ page about the proposed merger: www.rowan.edu/researchuniversityproposal
jmr0612 February 16, 2012 at 05:11 PM
I read it. There is nothing compelling there, and no details which would convince you that this is going to ignite the ecomony or why ELIMINATING a university option will keep more students from going out of state. Most residents simply don't want this, and the people behind it have their own personal agenda. It's packaged and presented as "what's best for southern New Jersey", when it really serves the interest of very few? Why are just a few unelected powerbrokers and the politicians they control allowed to decide what is best? When does what the people want matter for anything? i guess never when you live in New Jersey.
Tim Zatzariny Jr. (Editor) February 16, 2012 at 10:01 PM
Story from today's Philadelphia Inquirer about statewide protests of the proposed merger: http://www.philly.com/philly/education/20120216_Rutgers-Rowan_protests_sweep_across_New_Jersey.html
Tim Zatzariny Jr. (Editor) March 07, 2012 at 07:27 PM
From Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Kevin Riordan: Gov. Christie fast-tracking Rutgers-Rowan merger despite public opposition? http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/inq-blinq/Fast-track-for-Rowan-Rutgers-merger.html
Tim Zatzariny Jr. (Editor) March 11, 2012 at 02:47 PM
Rowan University seeks outside PR firm for messaging help during proposed merger with Rutgers-Camden. http://www.odwyerpr.com/blog/index.php?/archives/4150-University-Slated-for-Merger-Seeks-PR.html
Paul J. DiBartolo March 11, 2012 at 04:01 PM
I say, follow the money! Get all the details out about who is profiting how and from what and, with that information made public (they call that transparency:-), let the voting public decide. Who wants to place bets that that kind of information will never be forthcoming?
Anandini Dar March 11, 2012 at 09:20 PM
Justine, I don't think any one is trying to make Rutgers sound like anything other than what it is. It is, however, a top-tier, R-1, research university according to the Association of American Universities. And to compare Rutgers to Harvard as you do, is to compare apples to oranges. Rutgers is a state public research university. Harvard is not. Rutgers University at Camden hosts the only PhD granting Childhood Studies program in all of North America. Plenty of world-class research faculty, and graduate students from various parts of the world and nation have travelled just to be at this place! How is any merger at this moment a "win-win for South Jersey", even if you suggest making the entire system Rutgers. Even the writers of the current proposal do not have any calculations, data, or analyses that suggest long term, or short term gains or benefits to the region. In fact, it would cost residents millions of dollars because such a merger will be costly. Instead, a partnership or consortium model is more beneficial for the region, without causing the tax payers to shell out stacks of dollars. Here is more information on analyses for what could work for south New Jersey: http://info.saverutgerscamden.org/.
Anandini Dar March 11, 2012 at 09:47 PM
It'd be interesting to hear of these "so many benefits" through this merger, you mention Justine. Sounds like the same empty rhetoric used by those proposing this take over of the Rutgers-Camden campus. Show the statistics, the facts. I sent you a link above with analyses, but no response to that. Huh? And speaking for students. The faculty and professors are not the only one's fighting this take over. Check out the work of the students you say who will go to Rowan. Doubt it. They've got over 11,000 signatures already: http://www.r2rmerge.com/. And students already have the choice to commute to Rowan if they wanted. It is the merger proposal you support that will take away this choice for higher ed. from residents.
Nick C March 11, 2012 at 10:16 PM
Interesting comments here. Certainly the issue is NOT whether Rowan or Rutgers-Camden is 'better'(whatever the hell that means). The issue is a highly complex one. A merger of Rutgers-Camden into something else was first proposed ten year ago. You can read that history at this link. http://crab.rutgers.edu/~johnwall/Merger_Primer-2.pdf You can spend the rest of today reading other background at http://info.saverutgerscamden.org/
Nick C March 11, 2012 at 10:48 PM
For those that are interesting in rallying around the Stop the Merger cause, this site probably contains the most up-to-date information with links to many other sites http://r2rmerge.com/
Nick C March 11, 2012 at 11:19 PM
This raises some 'big picture' questions... http://www.njspotlight.com/stories/12/0302/0053/
theclinton March 12, 2012 at 01:06 AM
Robertwood is going to cost an estimated 80 million in initial acquisition. That is according to the President of Rutgers University. Rest assured the proposal would cost a ton.
theclinton March 12, 2012 at 01:19 AM
None of his points have any kind of data to support them. The biggest question is why does George Norcross get a bigger say than any other citizen?
theclinton March 12, 2012 at 01:36 AM
The merger will likely not "clean-up" Camden. Rutgers Camden is been investing more and more into the Camden community and not just in infrastructure. The Campus is integrating the whole city into its programming. I am Graduate Student at Rutgers and have yet to take a course that did not focus at least some of its time on the city. Many of the Faculty have created programs to benefit the city including law clinics, recent partnerships with the school district, etc. What exactly has Upenn done for west Phila? They have pushed the issues to Point Breeze and other neighborhoods. The same can be said of Columbia and most gentrification for that matter. What the faculty of Rutgers are trying to do is solve problems not just push them into Gloucester City, Pennsauken and Collingswood. Camden surely needs the help and I strongly doubt that, if the merger were to take place, Rowan would bother with it. Rowan has an entire Campus in Glassboro they have not finished yet. They have started dozens of projects that they dont have the funding for. In addition they would have the added cost of building a Research University. Camden would certainly suffer. Honestly, I am not sure I want Camden to become a college town. I think it will detrimental effects on the surrounding boros. Ask the residents of Long Branch and Elberon how they feel about Monmouth Universities expansion. Everytime a rental fills with vomiting undergrads your housing value goes down.
theclinton March 12, 2012 at 03:20 AM
some of your argument is misleading. Rutgers Camden, when isolated from Rutgers as whole ranks lower in some areas. However, the ratings methodology is based on a "standard" student. For instance one of the variables is students graduating within the prescribed time of the program. In other words, non-traditional students hurt the rating. Rutgers Camden services a large amount of non-traditional students including a incredible amount of veterans. The ratings do not paint the whole story. Furthermore, Rutgers Camden produces more research by far than Rowan does. http://crab.rutgers.edu/~seduffy/Is_RutgersCamden_a_Research_Uni%20versity.pdf
Tim Zatzariny Jr. (Editor) March 12, 2012 at 07:17 PM
Forum to discuss impact of proposed elimination of Rutgers–Camden upon Camden community, region DATE: Tuesday, March 13 TIME: 6 to 8 p.m. PLACE: 401 Penn classroom Accessible from the side of the Paul Robeson Library, facing the School of Law off of Fifth Street Directions to Rutgers–Camden: http://www.camden.rutgers.edu/page/getting-campus WHAT: Members of the Camden community will share their views on the role that Rutgers–Camden plays in their city and their concerns about the proposal for Rutgers–Camden to be taken over by Rowan University during an open forum. Speakers will include New Jersey State Senator Donald Norcross (D.-5); Jodina Hicks, executive director of UrbanPromise; Vanessa Jones, president of the LEAP Academy Parent Council; Gloria Martinez Vega, principal of the Molina School; and Bryan Morton, president of Concerned Citizens of North Camden. They will be joined by Camden citizens and Rutgers–Camden faculty, alumni, and students for a discussion about Rutgers’ role as an active anchor institution in the City of Camden.
Patrick Cox March 18, 2012 at 10:38 PM
No one here was putting down Rowan, Justine. You stepped in and started casting aspersions at Rutgers. As for standing in the way of benefits for South Jersey, start informing yourself. The idea that has been floated is to create a research university in South Jersey by first shutting down Rutgers-Camden. This idea ignores one key thing: South Jersey has a research university, and it's called Rutgers-Camden. You can say what you know about some people who applied, but the more salient facts are all available: Rutgers is an accredited research university by the AAU and Rowan is not. Rutgers has a research library and access to electronic research databases; these are major parts of how research is done. Rowan does not have them. Those research necessities and accreditation will stay with Rutgers, not move to Rowan. Rowan is simply not a research university and has decades to go before it can rebuild what Rutgers-Camden already has. This doesn't have anything to do with beautiful towns or Harvard or sarcastic jokes. It has to do with ending a research university to build a brand new one, which simply doesn't make sense. This will cost hundreds of millions of tax payer dollars to duplicate at Rowan what tax payers have already paid for at Rutgers. In addition, tax payers will continue to support the libraries and research facilities at what remains of Rutgers, but now double the expensive by supporting the exact same things at Rowan. Bad for S. NJ and all NJ tax payers
Samantha McCall March 19, 2012 at 12:11 AM
Lauren.....I believe this has George Norcross written all over it. What I find interesting, his brother Donald Norcross was sent into Rutgers to fuel the fire with the open forum. What is even more interesting, I haven't heard anything about it in the news. I wonder why that is? I have said it before, George Norcross sits on the board of Cooper Hospital, they have formed a partnership with Rowan for a medical school, let's put 2 and 2 together. And, Delaware River Port Authority just donated $6 million dollars to Cooper. Coincidence, I think not.
Samantha McCall March 19, 2012 at 12:15 AM
Yes, he pulled some strings. Steve Sweeney and his brother Donald Norcross. Unfortunately, it looks like Chris Christie has gotten into bed with both of them.
Samantha McCall March 19, 2012 at 12:22 AM
I agree with you Paul. George Norcross again. I just purchased the book that you recommended, I've only read the introduction so far, and I am disgusted.
theclinton March 21, 2012 at 04:24 PM
How many Collingswood people are affiliated with Rutgers? I see shirts, car stickers, etc, all over the place?
Our Town March 21, 2012 at 07:28 PM
He's getting away from the money losing Cooper Hospital and into a money making Cooper University Hospital by getting into bed with Rowan and by way of claws into the NJ government establishment, running Rutgers out of town. As a hospital, Cooper is being decimated in the market by Virtua and even the improving Kennedy Health System. It's very geographic location, much of Cooper's treatment is for patients that cannot or will not ever pay. Joining up and creating a school is an avenue away from the treatment only model. Let's face it, if you're from the suburbs, you're heading to Virtua or Kennedy unless you truly need a specialist in which case you may head Jefferson, CHOP, or UPenn. Unless you are taken for trauma, not many are heading to Cooper by choice.
Patrick Cox March 22, 2012 at 04:26 AM
um....wrong, templelawgrad http://www.northjersey.com/news/education/college/0315_ROWANSAT.html
Patrick Cox March 22, 2012 at 04:30 AM
"Rutgers-Camden is not Rutgers-New Brunswick"? I'm not sure what you mean by that, or why you'd use a pop culture reference like US News for your "source." Here's a publicly available document put out by the State of New Jersey. http://www.nj.gov/highereducation/IP2011/index.html This is the state's institutional profiles of it's higher ed instituions. Rutgers (there's only one) is listed under "research universities." Rowan is under "regional." Spend some time reading them. The Rutgers profile clearly indicates it is a single university three regional campuses. There's one Rutgers.
HomeBrew March 26, 2012 at 09:13 PM
New WTF Commission analysis of Rutgers-Camden/Rowan merger. http://homebrewsjavajive.blogspot.com/2012/03/wtf.html
Tim Zatzariny Jr. (Editor) March 29, 2012 at 01:03 PM
South Jersey Democrats say Lautenberg out of line for questioning Rutgers-Rowan merger. http://www.northjersey.com/news/South_Jersey_Democrats_blast_Lautenberg_for_criticizing_college_merger_proposal.html?c=y&page=1

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