Rutgers Wants Attention
Speaking to the Senate Higher Education Committee today in Trenton, Rutgers University President Robert Barchi said not enough people know about the school's accomplishments and what it can offer students. He also told the committee how he plans to turn that around, in New Jersey and across the country.
Barchi, named president in April 2012, admitted he was even surprised by the number of fields in which Rutgers ranked near the top nationwide. Women's and Gender History at Rutgers is ranked #1 in the nation by U.S. News and World Report; Wall Street Journal placed Rutgers at #3 for producing the best business graduates; Backstage Magazine included Rutgers' Mason Gross School of the Arts in its "5 Top Dance Schools Across the Country."
"We already have a great university. We just have to have people recognize how great that place is," Barchi explained.
Barchi said a marketing exercise with outside help is underway and will last until spring, working on a three-layer plan to promote the school. The three layers, according to Barchi, would be (1) New Jersey, (2) the surrounding states and (3) the whole nation.
The university's entrance into the Big Ten can also help with Barchi's mission, putting Rutgers in line with other flagship universities like Michigan, Ohio State, Wisconsin and Iowa.
"I want the 45-second slot at halftime to tell the story about Rutgers and its research and the students," Barchi said.
Rutgers' athletic programs won't make the official transfer from the Big East until 2014.
Barchi said the marketing effort will cost Rutgers "significant dollars," but it should produce a big return for the university.