Tuition has increased. Student aid has been decreased. Services and programs have necessarily been scaled back and/or cut. Unfortunately, these occurrences are nothing new — they have been occurring every year that I have been fortunate enough to attend school at this terrific institution. My name is Brian Block and I am your Vice-President of Legal & Governmental Affairs for the Student Government Association. Amongst my various duties, I am responsible for working alongside and in cooperation with our ever-enthusiastic administration to make the case to our state leaders that higher education is and should always be a top priority in the Garden State. While I am excited to take this task head-on, I refuse to take it on with anything less than the entire student body behind these efforts.

That is why today I ask each and every one of my fellow students to join me, the administration and your entire student government in the fight for a high quality college education for any student willing to work for it. All education, but even more specifically post-secondary education in the twenty-first century is nothing short of fundamental to the future success of our country. We all have a huge stake in ensuring that our legislators and our governor reverse the long-held course that has driven the level of state funding for our college down below what it was over a decade ago.

In the coming months, I urge you not only to help your student government with its lobbying initiatives, but to also bring to us your own creative ideas to let us help you pursue. With this in mind, please do not hesitate to contact your student government at sga@tcnj.edu with any of your ideas or concern. I sincerely hope and expect that together, our work and dedication this year to the cause of higher education will make those statements that I listed at the outset of my remarks to become rarely occurring phenomenon.

Brian Block, 2011

Vice President of Legal & Governmental Affairs

Student Government Association