Stockton is a steward of public funds, carefully balancing the fiscal needs of academic programs, capital and facilities, technology infrastructure, human capital, debt and expenses, student programs and services, and operations while keeping tuition affordable.
N.J. Budget Increases Funds for Stockton
In June 2021, Stockton University received a record $32.6 million in state aid from the FY22 budget approved by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Phil Murphy.
The funding continues the extra $4.6 million to support the Atlantic City campus and includes an additional $5.9 million to bring Stockton’s operating aid up to an equitable per-student amount of no less than $3,000 per full-time equivalent student.
“We have fought for years to get equitable per-student funding for Stockton,” President Harvey Kesselman said. “While Stockton has grown, our funding has not kept pace, and Stockton has historically been among the least funded state colleges. As we enter our 50th anniversary of teaching, we appreciate immensely that the governor and Legislature have begun to address the shortfall by implementing this important change in base funding.”
More Than 6,000 Students Received COVID Relief Funds
Stockton University distributed over $17 million in federal funds to assist more than 6,000 students impacted financially by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The University also allocated an additional $493,000 of its own federal Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund III (HEERF III) allotment to eliminate the debt of 214 students who still owe funds to the University.
Vice President for Enrollment Management Robert Heinrich said in many cases students faced unexpected hardships during the pandemic, including loss of employment for them or their families. The outstanding debt was jeopardizing the students’ academic progress and futures.
This allocation of funds will not just eliminate their debt but may help them stay on track to graduate.”
“These students have been unable to register for classes because of their outstanding debt to the University,” Heinrich said. “This allocation of funds will not just eliminate their debt but may help them stay on track to graduate.”
Students eligible for the one-time debt forgiveness must have been enrolled in classes at Stockton during the COVID-19 national emergency from March 2020 through the Summer 2021 semesters.
The $17 million in funding for students was allocated through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA), and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
Stockton Maintains A- Rating with Fitch
Stockton University has maintained its A- bond rating with Fitch Ratings, the company announced on April 8, noting that the rating outlook is stable.
In its press release, Fitch said: "Stockton's market position and student demand remain solid despite a softer Fall 2021 admissions cycle and a moderate drop in total enrollment. While the pandemic has driven smaller incoming classes and weaker retention through Fall 2021, such pressure has been less severe than certain peer institutions, and the University appears on track to improve its incoming Fall 2022 class with a return to effectively full housing occupancy. Fitch expects Stockton will return to its pre-pandemic trend of steady, manageable growth in the next few years."
The analysis also said the University has maintained good operating performance through the pandemic and has benefitted from increased state support.
"The Fitch bond rating and analysis is a testament to the hard work of our faculty, staff and administrators to balance the financial constraints of the pandemic with our commitment to providing students with the education and support services they need to succeed," said President Harvey Kesselman.