UMDNJ Trustees Chairman Backs University President Following Endorsment Of Partial Merger With Rutgers

Ann McClure's picture

The chairman of the board of trustees at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey publicly backed the school’s president Tuesday after the controversial release of a statement that seemed to endorse a partial merger with Rutgers University.

UMDNJ President William Owen surprised many at the university last week when he issued a joint statement with Rutgers President Richard McCormick stating the two schools are now working together to plan for a merger.

At least one member of UMDNJ’s board of trustees said Owen overstepped his bounds and issued the statement without the trustees’ permission.

"The board, not yourself, is responsible to take positions on policy matters such as this," Robert Del Tufo, a longtime UMDNJ trustee and former chairman of the board, said in an e-mail to Owen and the rest of the board last week. A copy of the e-mail was obtained by The Star-Ledger.

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