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Committee Advances Turner, Ruiz, Cunningham Bills to Provide Support for Thomas Edison State University


Trenton – The Senate Higher Education Committee today advanced bills to provide tuition assistance to Thomas Edison State University and establish the center for Career Relevant Education and Talent Evaluation of New Jersey.


The first bill, S-2590, sponsored by Senator Shirley Turner, would appropriate $1.5 million dollars towards tuition assistance for students enrolled at Thomas Edison State University. Under the bill, the appropriation would go to the Higher Education Student Assistance Authority in the Department of State.


“Thomas Edison State University’s academic programs remove barriers to allow part-time, working, or nontraditional students the opportunity to pursue a degree without compromising their personal and professional responsibilities,” said Senator Turner (D- Mercer/Hunterdon). “This bill would further advance this objective by extending additional financial assistance to decrease the pressure of paying tuition for students of the University.”


The second bill, S-2762, sponsored by Senate Majority Leader M. Teresa Ruiz and Senate President Pro Tempore Sandra B. Cunningham, would establish the center for Career Relevant Education and Talent Evaluation of New Jersey within Thomas Edison State University. The Center would maximize collaboration between institutions of higher education, workforce development programs and partner organizations that develop and implement career pathways for nontraditional students and workers.


“Evaluating credentials and formulating career pathways using for-credit and not-for-credit assessments puts knowledge in the hands of the students and allows them to see their professional trajectory clearly,” said Senator Ruiz (D-Essex). “The establishment of this center would create a personalized learning experience for students and equip them with the unique skills necessary to excel within the workforce.”


“The center for Career Relevant Education and Talent Evaluation would empower the individual, capturing their career-relevant knowledge, skills, and abilities to create a student-centered experience,” said Senator Cunningham (D-Hudson). “Doing so validates the time and talents of students and affords them the opportunity to represent themselves more accurately as they continue on a successful career path.”


Both bills were released from committee by votes of 5-0.