New Jersey City University (NJCU) announced on Oct. 4 that it launched The Guarini Institute for International Education and Economic Mobility.
NJCU and The Guarini Institute for International Education and Economic Mobility hosted a virtual forum, The Role of Universities in Economic Mobility after COVID-19, on Sept. 16 with 250 registrants. The keynote was delivered by Raj Chetty, William A. Ackman School of Economics professor at Harvard University. Other speakers included Brian Bridges, secretary of Higher Education for the State of New Jersey; Allan Goodman, president of the Institute of International Education; and Irene Trowell-Harris, Air Force veteran and member of the board of trustees of NJCU.
Sue Henderson, NJCU President, remarked on the significance of the event: “This event will engage members of the nonprofit, as well as members of private and public sectors to partner to advance the Institute’s mission. In just a few months, I am proud to report that the Guarini Institute has become a prominent champion of economic development and mobility in the region.”
With a mission to increase the economic mobility of college students by sponsoring initiatives that advance international education and foster economic development programs, the institute was made possible through a $5 million gift in May 2020 from longtime supporter and donor, former U.S. Rep. Frank J. Guarini.
The Guarini Institute is led by Dr. Adrian Franco. Formerly an officer and director at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, he supervised a portfolio of education and community development initiatives. Prior to that role, he was the inaugural executive director of Qualitas of Life Foundation and held senior roles in the public sector in Mexico. He holds a Master of International Affairs and a Ph.D. in International Education from Columbia University.
In the discussion of the mission of the Guarini Institute, Franco stated, “We are looking forward to collaborate with international and regional business and education leaders to advance novel projects like ‘Acelera Nueva Jersey,’ an initiative to facilitate partnerships between NJCU and Latin American firms interested in doing business in New Jersey.”
“We look forward to working collaboratively with the Guarini Institute, as well as NJCU, as we work to accelerate progress toward our statewide attainment goal of 65% of working-age adults earning a high-equality credential by 2025,” said Bridges.