School merger O.K. - Polytech, NYU deal gets state approval

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The state Board of Regents last week approved the merging of Polytechnic University in Downtown Brooklyn and New York University to become Polytechnic Institute of New York University.

The effective date is July 1, 2008.

The partnership will allow NYU to kick-start their dormant school of engineering and technology, which was disbanded in 1973.

On the other end, Polytechnic will now be able to utilize NYU’s clout as a major American college to help increase their presence in both Brooklyn and in higher education circles.

While both schools were established well over 100 years ago – NYU in 1831 and Polytechnic in 1853 — NYU has an enrollment of 50,917 while Polytechnic has about 3,000 students.

“The students, faculty and administration are very excited about the new opportunities this dynamic partnership will provide,” said Polytechnic President Jerry Hultin.

“This perfect fit between two great universities will preserve and enhance Polytechnic’s commitment to top-tier technology education and research, contribute to the economic vitality of New York City and the nation and to our students’ ability to compete in the 21st century global economy,” he added.

The state’s approval came after some of Polytechnic’s Board of Trustees and alumni alleged that the university had not adequately examined all the alternatives to the merger and had not negotiated a strong enough deal.

Thus the state began looking at the affiliation.

In a previous Courier-Life Publications story, Hultin said the merger isn’t a matter of one school buying or taking over the other as they are both non-profit institutions.

Polytechnic will continue to have its main campus in Brooklyn and the school fully expects NYU to look for opportunities to expand their campus in the nearby buildings in MetroTech, said Hultin.

Downtown Brooklyn Partnership President Joe Chan, an undergraduate and graduate alumnus of NYU, said in previous Courier-Life Publications stories that the prospect of the two schools merging or entering into partnership is tremendously exciting for Brooklyn.

Having an NYU presence in Downtown Brooklyn will add to the neighborhood’s growing reputation as a city-type college town similar to places like Cambridge, Massachusetts, said Chan.

Chan said there is currently an aggregate student population of about 35,000 at seven schools of higher learning in the Downtown Brooklyn area, said Chan.

The schools include Polytechnic, St Francis College, Brooklyn Law School, the Brooklyn campus of Long Island University, the New York City College of Technology, St. Joseph’s, and Pratt Institute.

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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