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March 26, 2004
CONTACT: Kathleen Delehanty
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Commission Reports Benefits of NJ’s Investment
in Higher Education Technology

New Jersey’s investments in higher education technology and research provide substantial academic, social, and economic benefits to the state and its citizens, according to a report released today by the New Jersey Commission on Higher Education.

Higher Education Technology and Research: Creating Excellence through State Investments summarizes New Jersey’s investment of over $300 million in higher education technology and research capacity over the past seven years. The report documents the positive impact of state support for technology infrastructure and interinstitutional connectivity, scientific and other equipment, technology-based economic development initiatives, renowned faculty and programs in targeted high-tech disciplines, scientific discovery, and funds to attract federal research grants and contracts.

“This investment in higher education technology and research was critical for the future of our higher education system and our state. Enhancing the capabilities of New Jersey’s colleges and universities enables them to help build and sustain the state’s knowledge base, economic prosperity, and quality of life,” said Commission Chairman Laurence Downes. “The programs detailed today have already paid significant dividends to New Jersey, and they will continue to provide long-term returns to the state and its citizens for many years to come.”

According to the report, the positive results of New Jersey’s targeted investments in technology and research at its colleges and universities include:

  • Technology infrastructure improvements and upgraded equipment are advancing teaching, learning, and collaboration among the institutions;
  • Expanded research capacity is improving institutions’ ability to meet the needs of the private sector;
  • Enhanced research and instructional programs are becoming more competitive on the national level;
  • New technologies and products are being created and commercialized;
  • New jobs and spin-off businesses are being developed;
  • Additional technologists, scientists, and engineers are being prepared for the future; and
  • Millions of dollars in new external funding was garnered by New Jersey institutions, with the promise of much more to come in the future.

A complete copy of the report is available on the Commission’s website: www.state.nj.us/highereducation/TechReportMar04.pdf.

In other business, Dr. Jeanne Oswald was appointed to serve as executive director of the Commission on Higher Education until such time as the Commission completes an assessment of it responsibilities and its current organizational structure and defines leadership needs for the future.

Dr. Oswald has been the Deputy Executive Director of the Commission since its 1994 inception, overseeing key statutory responsibilities related to policy and planning, advocacy, government relations, and collaboration with the preschool-to-grade-twelve community. In assuming the functions of executive director, Dr. Oswald will also oversee research, data analysis, academic affairs, and the Educational Opportunity Fund office, and will also coordinate the Commission’s work with the Presidents’ Council, the Higher Education Student Assistance Authority, the Legislature, the Governor’s Office, and other entities.

Dr. Oswald also serves as the chair of the board of directors of Special Olympics New Jersey. She holds a doctoral degree from Rutgers University, a master’s degree from the University of Bridgeport, and a bachelor’s degree from Bradley University.

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(Click here for an Adobe PDF version of this release.)

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 Last Updated: March 26, 2004 
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