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Union County College is a public comprehensive community college providing quality, affordable, accessible educational programs that serve the greater Union County region. It is the first of New Jersey’s 19 community colleges, serving both career-minded and transfer-oriented students since 1933. The college enrolls almost 30,000 credit, noncredit and continuing education students and is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Union County College provides opportunities for higher education for people of diverse ethnic, racial, cultural, educational and socioeconomic backgrounds in a multi-campus setting. The college has four campuses, which are located in Cranford, Elizabeth, Plainfield and Scotch Plains. It strives to promote in students a sense of responsibility for their own development and an understanding of their obligations as members of a democratic society. The college fosters in its students the desire to learn, the ability to think clearly and express themselves effectively, the habit of analytical and reflective thought and an awareness of themselves, their heritage, other cultures and their environment. Dr. Margaret M. McMenamin serves as the college’s eighth president.

The college offers more than 75 programs of study, many of which lead to the Associate’s in Arts and the Associate’s in Science degrees. Students who satisfactorily complete these two-year programs may transfer to four-year institutions for their junior and senior years.

In addition, Union County College confers the Associate’s in Science degree upon graduates of the Trinitas School of Nursing in Elizabeth. The Elizabeth campus also houses the Institute for Intensive English, providing English instruction for those wishing to learn English as a second language.

Thanks to funding from the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the New Jersey County College Capital Project Fund, the Elizabeth I. Kellogg building opened on the Elizabeth campus in the fall of 2009. It is located approximately one block south of the college’s existing Sidney F. Lessner Building and adds 132,000 square feet of library and instructional space to the Elizabeth campus. The building was developed by the Union County Improvement Authority and houses degree programs, continuing education offerings, a lecture hall, state-of-the-art information commons and library, and serves as a new home for the Trinitas School of Nursing. The top floor houses the headquarters of the college’s Industry Business Institute (IBI) along with a conference center.

The Union County Improvement Authority financed the project, and the state of New Jersey contributed $19 million through the County College Capital Projects Fund. In addition, the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders has established the Freeholder Scholars Program for Union County students who have attained a record of academic success in high school. The scholarship will cover two free years of college in pursuit of an associate’s degree. Distance learning opportunities, such as courses by DVD, are increasing with each semester.

Through the college’s Industry Business Institute, educational training programs can be designed for any company or organization. The Division of Economic Development and Continuing Education provides professional development and personal enrichment opportunities for individuals who live or work in Union County. Classes offered through this division include career certificate programs.

Lifelong Learning

Union County College offers a wide range of activities for students, including the honor society Phi Theta Kappa (a five-star chapter), an award-winning newspaper and various athletic programs.

Union County College has an unparalleled commitment to strategic planning, to student success and to diversity. At the college, students are number one.

Founded in 1855, Kean University has become a comprehensive, metropolitan institution of higher education, boasting a richly diverse student, faculty and staff population. Kean’s five undergraduate colleges and its Nathan Weiss Graduate College now serve more than 16,000 students.

While Kean continues to play a key role in the training of teachers, it is also a hub of educational, technological and cultural enrichment. More than 50 undergraduate degrees and more than 35 options leading to a doctoral or master’s degree, professional diploma or state certification are offered. Among these are Kean’s first doctoral programs, a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Urban Leadership and a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) in School Psychology. The university also offers an opportunity for students wishing to pursue a career in medicine through a partnership between Kean, Drexel University College of Medicine and Saint Peter’s University Hospital.

In 2007, the university acquired the historic Liberty Hall Museum. Built in 1772, this valuable historic resource now serves as a venue for classes, lectures and special presentations in a wide variety of disciplines.

The campus recently completed several extensive construction and renovation projects, including two new residence halls. Kean’s eight residence halls now accommodate nearly 2,000 students in apartment-style suites and traditional dormitories.

One of the signature projects of this academic year is a new, mixed-use building that will serve as an entryway to the Kean campus at the corner of Morris Avenue and Green Lane. The six-story building will feature a café and retail space on the first floor, classrooms and administrative space on floors two through five, and a conference center and rooftop terrace on the sixth floor. The new building will be home to Kean’s Robert Busch School of Design, as well as the university’s ever-expanding business programs.

The New Jersey Center for Science, Technology and Mathematics, founded in 2003, is housed in the STEM building. LEED Gold Certified by the U.S. Green Building Council, STEM features six stories of technology-oriented classrooms, laboratories and auditorium space that enhance student learning.

Continuing its role as a leader in environmentally friendly practices, Kean pioneered the state’s first undergraduate program in Sustainability Studies. The university also signed a memorandum of understanding with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) committing to reduce waste and boost recycling on campus, as well as to decrease the university’s carbon footprint. Kean’s aerobic in-vessel digester recycles all food waste on campus as part of its Blue Goes Green campaign.

Kean’s Human Rights Institute (HRI) offers a broad range of activities, conferences and curricula that aim to raise awareness of human rights violations worldwide and to inspire action among students, teachers and the general public, in an effort to combat social injustices. Kean also offers an interdisciplinary M.A. in Holocaust & Genocide Studies degree that explores the Holocaust, anti-Semitism, and other genocides and atrocities.

As part of its rich campus life, Kean also offers more than 130 academic, professional interest and philanthropic student groups, as well as competitive Division III sports programs and an array of visual and performing arts.

Kean’s East Campus, home to the Nathan Weiss Graduate College, also houses the Institute for Adults Living with Communication Disabilities, as well as the Department of Psychology and the Community Psychology Clinic. It features enhanced classrooms and the Gene & Shelley Enlow Recital Hall, a premiere 332-seat performance space.

In addition to the Union campus, Kean and Ocean County College (OCC) have established Kean Ocean, a partnership that enables residents in the region to complete the upper division courses required for certain Kean University undergraduate and graduate degree programs on the OCC campus.

For more information, please visit us online at or call (908) 737-KEAN.

There are more than 22,000 students in 31 public schools and two early childhood centers, making the Elizabeth Schools System among the largest in the state, with a professional and support staff numbering just about 3,000. The children in attendance represent more than 50 countries and 37 language groups.

The system’s Pre-K, elementary and middle schools are located in the city’s neighborhoods. There is one central high school, the largest in the state, located in the city’s Midtown district. A variety of educational offerings are available in the public schools, including honors and advanced programs, bilingual and English as a Second Language programs, a Gifted and Talented track and special education programs.

The high school’s track, baseball, basketball and football programs are among the best in the state, and the school has spawned many professional athletes who have gone onto successful careers. The school’s marching band has also won many state competitions.

Educational programs initiated under Mayor Bollwage’s administration include the LEAP (Linking Educational After-School Programs) and SOAR (Special Opportunity for Achievement and Reawakening) programs, which provide after-school programs and activities centering on building leadership skills and health education, including workshops for children about alcohol, tobacco control, drug and violence prevention.

The Mayor created the Office on Youth, and, as part of this function, created a Youth Advisory Board to consult on the needs of children.

The Elizabeth Public Library is a modern library system meeting the needs of Elizabeth residents, businesses and students for both traditional and innovative library services.

The library provides services both on the Internet and at its four locations. By accessing the library’s web page, persons with valid library cards have access to our virtual library 24/7, which includes e-books and online reference resources.

The library produces several hundred programs a year for children and adults. There are magic, craft and storytelling programs for children, as well as cultural and ethnic programming reflecting the many heritages of the residents of Elizabeth. Many staff members are fluent in Spanish and some in Portuguese and Creole.

Elizabeth also offers many options for private and parochial education. There are more than a dozen private schools offering educational opportunities, including Catholic, Christian and Jewish. There are also a number of options for daycare, pre-school and nursery schools.

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