Nova Southeastern University President George L. Hanbury, on hand for the official inauguration of the college’s new regional campus in Puerto Rico, said Thursday among the institution’s goals is becoming a “gateway to Central and South America for education and the health sciences.”
Speaking before a roomful of NSU faculty, staff and students, Hanbury said the college’s commitment to Puerto Rico calls for working with other institutions of higher education to make Puerto Rico a gateway to Central and South America for education and the health sciences.
“There has never been a better time for NSU to expand its higher educational programs in Puerto Rico, especially in areas such as pharmacy and education where there are critical shortages on the island,” Hanbury said. “NSU’s new campus in San Juan brings world-class education from a respected university to the backyard of residents of Puerto Rico who want to advance in or change their careers.”
As part of that goal, Hanbury said he met with Gov. García-Padilla Wednesday to discuss ways in which Puerto Rico could benefit from that exchange, as well as a strategy to further the administration’s drive toward creating a knowledge-based economy.
NSU will be offering masters and doctoral degrees in pharmacy and education at the new facilities, which will have an estimated $27 million economic impact on the island for the fiscal year.
The campus is in a four-story building with approximately 37,000 square feet at the Professional Offices Park IV in San Juan. It is equipped with classrooms, state-of-the-art technology, computer labs, videoconferencing, a multi-purpose room, drug information center, a wet lab, offices and a fitness center.
Hanbury also said that NSU is considering the expansion in the areas of medicine, nursing, physical therapy and occupational therapy, all of them areas of study where there is a high demand for jobs.
“Nova Southeastern University is committed to helping educate residents of San Juan so they get a quality education leading to good jobs, and allowing them to do so without leaving their families,” said Hanbury. “It also brings with it a tremendous opportunity for students from the mainland seeking upper level degrees in pharmacy and education to spend time living and studying in a beautiful Caribbean location.”
Meanwhile, Andrés Malavé, executive director of the NSU San Juan campus, stressed that NSU has a nearly 40-year history with Puerto Rico, serving students who attended class at the university’s main campus.
NSU offered instructional opportunities on the island starting in 1995 as a result of changes in pharmaceutical requirements. Currently, more than 350 pharmacy and education students are enrolled at NSU in Puerto Rico.
“Our students will benefit from this new campus through opportunities to obtain masters and doctorate degrees in the areas of education and pharmacy with the same quality of education from a top university without having the significant economic impact that comes along with studying abroad,” Malavé said.
NSU has additional regional campuses in Miami, Miramar, Fort Myers, Palm Beach, Orlando, Tampa and Jacksonville.