News & Stories


South Jersey Biz: Eds, Meds and Big Moves

by Erica Bauwens

The city of Camden continues to move towards a bigger, brighter future.

The last 50 years have been a struggle for Camden. A loss of industry and crime turned what was a bustling place into a city in disarray and despair. But today, Camden is re-emerging as one of the most rapidly growing cities in South Jersey, thanks to new business, new jobs, a redefined focus on education, and new investments in the community.

“With the Economic Opportunity Act we’ve seen more interest in the city than in the last 100 years,” says Susan Bass Levin, president and CEO of The Cooper Foundation. “The diversity is pretty unique—sports, manufacturing, technology, schools. It really fits a 21st century economy.”

Collaborative education

While higher education has been a staple in the city for decades, officials are taking a new approach to Camden’s relationship with higher education and medicine. That can be seen in the brand new Nursing and Science building, a $62.5 million research facility placed at Fifth and Federal Streets, strategically between the Rutgers-Camden campus and Cooper Hospital.

“This represents the first time we’re really moving past our traditional footprint,” says Michael Sepanic, associate chancellor for external relations at Rutgers University-Camden. “This building is going to be the first component in trying to build out an ‘eds and meds’ corridor. It’s going to expand Rutgers deeper into the city and create a more vibrant corridor between our campus and Cooper.”

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