150 West State Street. Trenton NJ 08608 -- 609-989-1100 office

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Association Staff

Michael W. Klein, JD, PhD

Chief Executive Officer



Barbara Berreski, Esq.

Government & Legal Affairs


Patricia A. Berry

Budget & Administration


Pamela J. Hersh

Communications & Marketing


Support Staff

Charlene R. Pipher

Executive Assistant/Web Design


Terry Toth

Part-Time Secretarial Assistant



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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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The following Letter to the Editor from NJASCU Executive Director Michael Klein was sent in response to a Star-Ledger editorial


Dear Editors:

Your editorial on July 23, 2017 “College Sex Assaults: Right Cause But Wrong Leader,” suggests that New Jersey’s colleges and universities should be “required to report every sexual assault allegation to the local prosecutor’s sex crimes unit.” This suggestion overlooks an important right belonging to victims of sexual crimes assaults. The New Jersey Campus Sexual Assault Victim’s Bill of Rights Act (N.J.S.A. 18A:61E-1 et seq.) “which has been on the books since 1994” gives victims of sexual assaults the right to be free from pressure from campus personnel “to report crimes if the victim does not wish to do so.” This right extends to victims of sexual assaults that occur on the campus of any public or independent college or university in New Jersey and where the victim or alleged perpetrator is a student, or when the victim is a student involved in an off-campus sexual assault.

The New Jersey Task Force on Campus Sexual Assault recently released its report, which included several excellent recommendations. The state colleges and universities join the Task Force in its aim to “enhance the safety of students on campus, assist students affected by sexual violence, and create healthier campus communities built on respect.”

Thank you for considering my letter,


Michael W. Klein, JD, PhD

Executive Director/CEO

New Jersey Association of State Colleges & Universities

NJASCU Analysis of Governor's Final FY2018 Appropriations Act

(July 4, 2017)

The legislature approved the $34.7 million FY 2018 state budget just after midnight, July 4, 2017, approving over $300 million additional spending added by the legislature to his proposed budget, and line-item vetoing some language.  As soon as the governor's line-item veto message becomes publicly available, we will publish information if it removes any language affecting public higher education.  Read analysis.


NJASCU Statement on Senate Bill No. 3281/Assembly Bill No. 4969

Establishes Montclair State University as a Public Research University

July 21, 2017


We congratulate Montclair State University on the enactment today of the legislation designating the institution as a public research university.


Montclair has a long history of distinguished contributions to the students and residents of New Jersey, and its evolution from a teachers’ college to a public research university reflects how its mission has kept pace with the needs of the state.


Key provisions in the Montclair State legislation remove the institution from restrictions under the State College Contracts Law for procurement and construction.  The State College Contracts Law is 31 years old and constrains the operation of the remaining state colleges and universities.  The New Jersey Higher Education Task Force, in its December 2010 report, stated that the State College Contracts Law restricts the ability of these institutions to enter long-range contracts, slows the pace of construction, and increases procurement and construction costs.


The New Jersey Higher Education Task Force, chaired by former Governor Tom Kean, endorsed a recommendation from the New Jersey Presidents’ Council to revise many provisions of the State College Contracts Law.  The New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities looks forward to working with the legislators to cut red tape in the New Jersey’s laws to enable all the state colleges and universities to serve New Jersey’s residents more effectively and efficiently.

Who We Are

New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities - the leading voice for public higher education in New Jersey.

Acting as an advocate in the state capital and throughout the state, the New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities (NJASCU) supports the missions and well-being of senior public institutions of higher education.  In cooperation with trustees, students, faculty and campus administrators, NJASCU plays an active role in developing and proposing state higher education policy to better serve New Jersey's citizens.  Its members are the eight senior public institutions of higher education:  The College of New Jersey, Kean University, Montclair State University, New Jersey City University, Ramapo College of New Jersey, Stockton University, Thomas Edison State University, and William Paterson University.

Rowan University, which recently assumed the status of a research institution, now is an affiliate member.

Specifically, NJASCU does the following:

  • Analyzes and monitors public policy issues and legislation affecting its member institutions.  Issues include: college access and affordability; higher education finance trends and comparisons; trustee governance, student welfare, ethical standards; unprecedented enrollment demand and the need to increase capacity; addressing the needs of evolving student populations;
  • Collaborates with public institutions on communicating and promoting the distinctive excellence and advantages of New Jersey's senior public institutions of higher education; and
  • Creates educational and public service opportunities for those interested in the success and sustainability of New Jersey's public institutions of higher education.

The Association played a key role in achieving landmark legislation in 1986 and 1994, which transferred important fiscal and administrative authority to the campuses from state government, emphasizing trustee governance and direct public accountability.  The state colleges and universities in New Jersey are among the nation's most autonomous public institutions.


Profiles of NJASCU alumni whose work is making a difference in the lives of others.  The website will feature a new profile each month.  Please submit suggestions for profiles to Pam Hersh or call (609) 256-8256.

Alison Banks-Moore, Ramapo College of New Jersey, Class of 1977
 July 2017

Alison Banks-Moore gets goosebumps of inspiration – as opposed to tears of nostalgia – when thinking of her commencement from Ramapo College in 1977. The commencement speaker was Shirley Chisholm, politician, educator, and author, who became the first black woman elected to the U.S. Congress, where she served for seven terms representing parts of New York City from 1969 to 1983.

Congresswoman Chisholm’s words and example reinforced for Ms. Banks-Moore the essence of her Ramapo experience – connecting with others for the purpose of helping others. Instead of being apprehensive about leaving the nurturing next of Ramapo, Ms. Banks-Moore, who earned a B.A. in Contemporary Arts, felt excited about flying from the nest and facing whatever personal and professional challenges were in her future.  Read more.

Previous Alumni Profiles:

John Reitmeyer, The College of New Jersey, Class of 1997 (Featured June 2017)

James J. Florio, The College of New Jersey, Class of 1962 (Featured May 2017)

Nelida Valentin, Stockton University, Class of 1986 (Featured March/April 2017) 

Mohamad Bassel Khair, Montclair State University, Class of 2013 (Featured February 2017)

Robin Schwartz, William Paterson University, Class of 1979 (Featured January 2017)

Denis Onieal, New Jersey City University, Class of 1976 (Featured November/December 2016)

Kenneth Lacovara, Rowan University, Class of 1984 (Featured October 2016)

NJCU Alumni Jazz Big Band (Featured September 2016)

Dean Peter Straub, Stockton University, Class of 1980 (Featured August 2016)

David Keefe, Montclair State University, MFA, 2009 (Featured July 2016)

Kayleigh Shangle and James Shangle, The College of New Jersey (Featured June 2016)

Edward Shannon, Ramapo College of New Jersey, 85 (Featured May 2016)

Joanne Robinson, William Paterson University School of Nursing, '75 (Featured March 2016/April 2016)

Danielle Kovach, New Jersey City University, '01 (Featured February 2016/March 2016)

Patricia Powell, William Paterson University, '73 (Featured January 2016/February 2016)

Harvey Kesselman, Stockton University, '79 (Featured December 2015/January 2016)

Lamont Repollet, The College of New Jersey, '94, Kean University, '00 (Featured November/December 2015)

Dennis Devery, Thomas Edison State University, '05  (Featured October 2015)

Lester E. Taylor, III, Montclair State University, '97 (Featured September 2015)

A.J. Sabath, Ramapo College, '93 (Featured August 2015)

Rick Ricciardi, Stockton University, '76 (Featured July 2015)

Quick Takes (below) are current brief updates on legislative and policy issues being followed by NJASCU

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.

NJASCU is part of the Innovation NJ Coalition

Innovation NJ is a coalition of busineess and academia established to promote policies that foster an environment for innovation in the state that will: 

  • encourage increased private and public sector R&D and the commercialization of new medicines, technologies and products to improve our quality of life;
  • stimulate economic growth in New Jersey;
  • retain and advance high-paying jobs in the state;
  • retain and advance high-paying innovation-related jobs in the state; and
  • increase the number of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) related graduates from New Jersey colleges and universities.

Learn more

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