NJ Governor wants to merge TESC into Rutgers

Discussion in 'Political Discussions' started by scaredrain, Mar 17, 2010.

  1. scaredrain

    scaredrain Member

  2. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    If the proposal goes through, my guess would be that TESC becomes something like "Thomas Edison College of Rutgers University". Alternatively, it could be absorbed into the existing "University College of Rutgers University". University College already serves non-traditional students, though not through DL; it offers B&M night/weekend programs at the Newark and Camden campuses.

    More on the proposal:
  3. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Very interesting

    Just like with Excelsior they are a part of the University of the State of NY.
    (Not the same as NY State)

    Here it may be TESC of NJ State University Rutgers.

    Have good name recognition.

    "Thomas Edison College of Rutgers University" sounds really good.
  4. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    Not really, Excelsior broke off of USNY several years ago and is now a private non-profit. They are still "a part of" USNY only in the sense that ALL NY colleges are (its like being "State Approved").

    As for TESC becoming a part of rutgers... :eek: that would make it the best of the big 3 as far as name recognition and would probably make it immensely more popular.

    If I were a TESC student, I would delay graduation for a while (if a degree wasn't urgent) to see how this develops.
  5. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    If everything stayed exactly the same at TESC, except for the addition of the "Rutgers" name, then you would be right.

    But there are obviously a lot of differences between TESC and Rutgers in terms of academic culture. And so it's quite possible that Rutgers might see fit to change the things are done at TESC, to bring it into compliance with the rest of the Rutgers system. As one news story has noted:
    In other words, Rutgers may conclude that TESC's current "brand" does not fit well within the Rutgers system. If that happens, they could decide to change what the TESC brand stands for.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 17, 2010
  6. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    I was thinking the exact same thing. I was wondering, however, if TESC would graduate all current students under TESC and only have new students enroll under the Rutgers/TESC label, or if the current TESC students would be grandfathered under Rutgers/TESC and yet allowed to complete their original programs, even if changes occur.

    Either way, I just really hope that in the end The Big Three doesn't become The Big Two.
  7. bazonkers

    bazonkers New Member

    Interesting. Maybe I should send my fee in for an AAS in Emergency Management. I had them do a graduation audit and I meet all the requirements. All I have to do is pay the graduation fee. I didn't do it before as it's expensive (2K or something) for a AAS. I already have a BS and an AA.
  8. BillDayson

    BillDayson New Member

    I'm kind of concerned that this is taking place in the context of large budget cuts to NJ higher education. The 'Inside Higher Education' article says:

    So the proposal isn't just to change TESC's name. It's a proposal to partially de-fund it.

    I agree (as usual) with Caldog that the proposed changes could possibly bring with them dramatic changes in TESC's procedures and academic culture. The story says this:

    It isn't clear what that edu-speak means in real life, but it definitely hints at a collision of institutional cultures, with B&M powerhouse Rutgers being placed on top. The suggestion is that changes will be made in Trenton, perhaps moving towards Rutgers' taught classroom-based model being broadcast to the world by TESC's DL delivery expertise.

    Of course, that idea might run counter to the money-saving, budget-cutting imperative that apparently motivated this proposal. Beefing up TESC into Rutgers' steroid-inflated DL-delivery arm might bring NJ big revenues in the long run, but it will cost big bucks in the short term.

    So...will they be moving TESC in the direction of emulating Rutgers? (That's gonna cost NJ money.) Or will they really be moving Rutgers in the direction of TESC? Will they be bringing TESC on board in order to promote testing out to Rutgers' B&M undergraduates so as to save having to pay professors to teach them?

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    I would vote for "Thomas Edison College of Rutgers University," that sounds really cool. Maybe, it is better to have "Rutgers University at Trenton." I agree that it not to become the Big Two. :)
  10. bazonkers

    bazonkers New Member

    I just did the math. It's actually closer to $2900 for an AAS degree. Does anyone here think I should get it simply because I've met all the requirements? It COULD help me as I've done some work with the Coast Guard, etc. in the past but it seems like an AAS at this point (with a few more graduate degrees to come) is a bit of a step backwards. Especially at $3K.
  11. TMW2009

    TMW2009 New Member

    IF this happens, its not happening until 2011 and there's going to be some wacky logistics involved. Or are you just wanting a degree with the Thomas Edison State College name on it before it possibly merges?
  12. bazonkers

    bazonkers New Member

    I was thinking more along the lines of should I get it because I technically finished it. The name isn't that important but eventually, I would be able to list it as TESC/Rutgers/whatever as most people list old schools under their new name on their resume so employers can find them in the accreditation books. If I wait until 2011 (or too much longer) they might change the requirements and require all sorts of other stuff meaning I won't be finished.

    I probably won't get it. I can't really teach with it and I do still have the FEMA credits I could show someone if I need to. I should put the 3K towards my next masters. I think I just needed to think out loud. :)
  13. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Rutgers University is actually:

    Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.
    Rutgers is the sole university in the United States that is a colonial college, a land-grant institution, and a public university.
    Rutgers was reaccredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education in 2008.
    Rutgers is one of the nation’s leading comprehensive public research universities and the only public university in New Jersey in the Association of American Universities (AAU). AAU institutions are North America’s 62 leading research universities, recognized for the quality and scope of their research and educational programs. Rutgers and Princeton are New Jersey’s only AAU institutions.

    So will TESC now be all that?

    Also the tuition how will tuition be affected?
  14. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Just speculating here, but what if TESC is a money-maker? Or, at least, able to break even? Then a bit of synergistic adjustment (read: layoffs) and viola! You have integrated them.

    I agree that accepting the brand means TESC will have to award what looks and feels like a degree from Rutgers (whatever that is). But they could maintain it as a separate brand, still taking advantage of the synergies found in merging two administrative systems.

    In golf, Acushnet owns both Titlelist and Pinnacle brands of golf balls. One is good-to-great (Titleist), while the other is a round white rock. Why doesn't Titleist put its much-better-known brand on Pinnacles? Because it would water down the brand cache of the top-selling ball in golf. This way, they sell Titleists to serious golfers (or wannabes) and Pinnacles to people looking to save money.

    "TESC, brought to you by the makers of Rutgers. And with a name like Rutgers, it has to be good." Or whatever.
  15. cookderosa

    cookderosa Resident Chef

    This news certainly is the buzz on more than one of my boards. I see TESC as being the red-headed-step-child in this. What do they bring to the table? It isn't delivery expertise, because their delivery is very bland and mainstream. They don't even use instructors, only mentors. There are no lectures or lessons, only assigned reading and homework- so I don't see them "teaching" Ruters how to do online delivery. IMO my TESC courses were -in a strictly technological sense- really at the bottom of the pile.

    I'll ask what Bill Dayson asks- what exactly does this edu-speak mean, and who is gaining through the merger? How are the cuts going to show up, and what does this mean for students? Where can TESC cut xbillion dollars? In what way will the merger be cheaper for anyone? There are many unanswered questions.

    Since we are all just speculating, I'll throw mine in too. I'd bet that TESC becomes the "global campus" in the same way that other state systems have done (Pen or IL) and that we can say bye-bye to 120 credit transfers. My crystal ball shows 30 credit residency and CLEP limits. I think it's TESC that will have to conform.

    Now the BIGGER question, will TESC go along with it, or will they suffer the budget cut and go private? We can't rule out that possibility.
  16. Vincey37

    Vincey37 New Member

    This. There is no way a Rutgers degree will be awarded solely through transfer credit. Either TESC keeps awarding separate degrees or the Big 3 goes away.
  17. taylor

    taylor New Member

    I like Rutgers University-Trenton. Rutgers already has 3 campuses with New Brunswick being the main campus which btw my sister graduated from. The admissions is toughest to get into the New Brunswick campus than Newark or Camden but most people don't differentiate between what campus you graduated from like the UC system (UCLA, UCSB, UCI, UCSD, etc). For the most part Rutgers is Rutgers except for those who went to New Brunswick who may feel they deserve a little more recognition than the other campuses. So I think if this merge occurs it would be awesome for former and current TESC students.
  18. taylor

    taylor New Member

    This is an email I just got from TESC. I feel like replying back, just do us a favor and merge:).

    As you may have heard, Gov. Christie's FY 2011 budget, unveiled on March 16, contains a proposal to merge Thomas Edison State College into Rutgers.

    The College first learned about the proposal yesterday. We have expressed our concern about its potential impact on our students to the governor and the legislature and expect to continue these discussions over the coming weeks.

    Our primary goal is to ensure our students have access to high-quality, flexible, and affordable programs and services designed exclusively for adult learners. We believe this goal is best achieved with Thomas Edison State College remaining an independent, autonomous institution.

    As we learn more about the governor's proposal, we will keep you informed about how it may affect your status as a student as well as our efforts to preserve the flexible, academic programs the College currently offers.

    Thank you,

    Dr. George A. Pruitt
  19. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    The fact that the State has proposed to pull all of its funding for TESC suggests that it is not a money-maker in its present form.
    Knowledge and understanding of the many complex issues pertaining to prior learning assessment, credit transfer, credit by exam, etc. You know, the kinds of issues that arise on forums like this one every day.
    Perhaps nobody. I doubt that TESC nor Rutgers wants the merger. But the state may force it on them, because it could save them some money.

    Here is a possible worst-case scenario:

    (1) TESC offices in Trenton are closed, and their operations are moved to the Rutgers campus in New Brunswick. This news story suggests that such relocation is planned.

    (2) Current TESC staff leave, due to the school's move. Their institutional knowledge and understanding of non-traditional education issues are lost as well. They are replaced by Rutgers staffers with traditional B&M backgrounds and no background in DL.

    (3) Rutgers treats the TESC division as the least important of its many schools and colleges. Rutgers has little interest in TESC’s mission, since it adds nothing to its reputation. Rutgers wants to be in the same league (literally) with schools like Georgetown, UConn, and Notre Dame. It is not interested in competing with schools like Charter Oak or Excelsior.

    (4) As a consequence of (2) and (3), TESC’s reputation for customer service plumments. Prospective students turn to Charter Oak or Excelsior instead.

    (5) With enrollments falling, Rutgers asks the state for permission to close the TESC division.

    I am not suggesting that this scenario is inevitable, or even likely. However, it seems at least as likely as the best-case scenario, where nothing changes for TESC students except for the name on their diplomas.
  20. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    Except that there is no assurance that TESC will stay in Trenton if it merges with Rutgers. In fact, it's more likely that the TESC offices in Trenton will be closed and moved to New Brunswick.

    There is no obvious need for a Rutgers presence in Trenton. There is already a state college, The College of New Jersey (commonly known as "TCNJ"), on the outskirts of Trenton. In fact, TCNJ used to be called "Trenton State College".

    Furthermore, TCNJ has become increasingly successful and selective in recent years. In fact, TCNJ now slightly outscores the Rutgers - New Brunswick "flagship" campus in terms of undergraduate SAT scores. Does Trenton really need two top-tier state college campuses?

    Probably not. So Rutgers doesn't need TESC's Trenton facilities. On the contrary, cost savings would be achieved by closing these facilities and moving TESC to the Rutgers New Brunswick campus. Such relocation is suggested by the Trenton Times story:
    So TESC may not be in Trenton at all if this merger goes through.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 17, 2010

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