Bloomfield College, one of the oldest colleges in New Jersey, was on the brink of shutting down before Montclair State University offered financial support for this upcoming year.
Montclair State President Dr. Jonathan Koppell announced the week of March 14 that the university will be creating a lifeline for Bloomfield College in its time of need.
“I want to be a resource,” Koppell said. “We are designing a potential co-op with the two institutions that will not negatively impact our school or our students.”
A big concern for many of the Senate Board was where this money was coming from. University spokesperson Andrew Mees explained this.
“In the event we supply any funding to Bloomfield College, it will be taken from the university’s operating reserves,” Mees said. “Keep in mind that this is a secured loan and that Bloomfield’s cash reserves would need to fall below a certain threshold before they can request funding from Montclair [State]. If their enrollment remains stable, they may not need any or all of the funding available via the terms of the agreement.”
Mees explained that this is a win for both institutions.
“This is an exciting opportunity for Montclair [State] to have an even bigger platform to fulfill its mission as a public – and public-serving – institution in New Jersey,” Mees said. “We see this as a win for both institutions and — hopefully — for the communities that we’re dedicated to serving. This is an opportunity to do something really innovative in higher education that advances the state.”
Dr. Marcheta Evans, the president of Bloomfield College, explained why Montclair State was chosen to help.
“Out of 30 different colleges across the country, Montclair State was chosen to help Bloomfield College because of its commitment to minority and traditionally underserved student populations, and the breadth of its academic, athletic and arts offerings aligning with Bloomfield College’s long-held mission,” Evans said.
While several things are still being worked out between the two schools, Evans shared that Bloomfield College will conduct classes, engage in NCAA sporting events and all traditional activities and hold commencement for the 2023 class of Bloomfield graduates with the help of Montclair State.
Antonio Tordon, a senior English major at Bloomfield College, believes this partnership will be a good thing for students.
“It’s a good thing for the students that are currently here,” Tordon said. “That way they don’t have to feel like they have to find a different place to stay to complete their program.”
Melo Thomas, a junior game design and game programming major at Bloomfield College, is glad this happened so she does not have to transfer.
“I’m actually glad it happened,” Thomas said. “I’m supposed to graduate next year, so I was part of the group that was like, ‘do I need to transfer or do I need to stay?'”
Evans is grateful to Montclair State’s board of trustees for taking this important step in making sure Bloomfield College can continue its legacy and complete the 2022-2023 school year.
“This is a monumental moment for all of us who care deeply about the history and legacy of Bloomfield College and the extraordinary student population we serve,” Evans said. “Montclair [State] and Bloomfield are exploring pathways that allow Bloomfield to retain its mission and ensure that the Bloomfield legacy and name will continue.”