During a beautiful sunny day on Monday, Aug. 28, Bloomfield College students dispersed across the green as they socialized and became acclimated for the upcoming year. A massive blow-up waterslide and an ice cream truck set the exciting atmosphere. Upcoming freshmen could be seen adjusting to the new setting while fun music blasted from the speakers.
Bloomfield College recently merged with Montclair State University, creating new opportunities for students from both schools. Founded in 1868, Bloomfield is ranked as one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges. The College was designated as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and a Predominantly Black Institution (PBI). Before merging with Montclair State, it was a private liberal arts college with a rich history and tradition, which the merger aims to preserve.
The campus life at The Bloomfield College of Montclair State is small and close-knit. The students take great pride in their community and plan to uphold it long after the merger. They plan on keeping campus life alive by continuing to host events and encouraging student involvement.
Nana Essell is a Bloomfield College alumnus who is visiting the campus for a back-to-school event. He sat at a table talking with his friends who were in the same fraternity he was. While sitting at a table with his fraternity brothers, he talked about how he planned on keeping the culture of Bloomfield alive after the merger as an alumnus.
“By being here today, I am here to support the event,” Essell said. “Let’s just keep the momentum going.”
In the future, Essell hopes to see students from both campuses interact. He feels that joint events are a great idea for participation.
“I would love to see a sports competition or tournament between Bloomfield and Montclair [State],” Essell said. “We could involve commuters because they do not come out as much.”
He went on to talk about how a shuttle between campuses would be convenient for all students.
“I would like if there was a shuttle bus and if students [from the Montclair campus] had the option to dorm here [at the Bloomfield campus],” Essell said.
Bloomfield students are grateful to Montclair State for helping keep their college thriving. They feel thankful that the merger could help them continue their education journey.
Dulce Meneses, a senior biology major, is optimistic about what the merger could bring to both institutions.
“I am really glad we merged with Montclair [State], because I would hate to see Bloomfield not be here anymore,” Meneses said. “The merger could encourage more interaction between students of both campuses.”
Dajah Tunnell, a junior sociology major, is excited to see what the future will hold for the institution and wants to continue meeting new people.
“I think that Bloomfield was helped a lot from the merge, I can already see a lot of changes,” said Tunnell. “[I want] to be more interactive and meet new people.”
Both campuses have a high amount of student involvement activities, and many students wonder what the merger might entail for their organization. Meneses is one of many students who take pride in their campus involvement and their Greek organization. For Meneses, that’s Lambda Theta Alpha.
Meneses would love to experience combined campus life but said she would like to keep certain aspects separate for their own good.
“Combining [our sorority chapter] with the Montclair [State] chapter could alter our history,” Meneses said. “Each chapter has its own established past and it wouldn’t be fair to combine them.”
Kay Patterson is the coordinator for the Center for Student Leadership Engagement and is a recent Montclair State alumnus. She works with clubs and Greek organizations on campus. She feels that Bloomfield has a very strong community on campus.
“I think that’s what makes Bloomfield special because the maximum number of students in a class is 30,” said Patterson. “We are small but we are mighty, our students keep very high spirits.”