Sticking true to its vote of intent of a month ago, the Board of Trustees of Polytechnic University, in Brooklyn, voted today to merge with New York University. The vote comes one week after a similar vote by the trustees at NYU.
Although some Polytechnic trustees had previously questioned the merger and raised questions about conflicts of interest, Craig Matthews, chairman of the Polytechnic board, said the vote in support of the merger was well in excess of the required 75 percent of the 35-member board.
Many details about the merger remain private, including questions of governance and the new name for Polytechnic. But in an interview, Mr. Matthews said the arrangement would keep Polytechnic and its Board of Trustees intact “for a period of time.” The trustees “still have responsibility for fund raising,” he added, even though “NYU will become the sole owner” of the Brooklyn institution.
Mr. Matthews said the merger, which has been in the works for more than six months, would be a financial win for Polytechnic. He said the deal protected the rights of Poytechnic’s tenured and tenure-track faculty members, as well as other faculty and staff members.
Neither university plans to institute layoffs or staff cuts as a result of the merger, said Mr. Matthews, although he said he could not rule out the possibility that some might come later, as leaders of the institution see places for improved efficiencies. He said the financial benefits would come to Polytechnic because “enrollment will go up and retention will go up.”
To go forward, the merger must still be approved by the New York State Board of Regents and the state’s education department. Mr. Matthews said that he hoped all approvals would be accomplished by June, and that beginning in the next academic year, Polytechnic students would be given the opportunity to include the NYU name on their diplomas. —Goldie Blumenstyk