“The importance of communication in family-owned businesses” was a topic that sparked communication on its own at a workshop hosted by the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce. Stockton University professor John Boyle led the discussion, focused on “best practices” that was part of a series in the chamber’s Founded in Family program on the importance of family business to the LBI regional economy.
First, Boyle quoted overall statistics that show challenges to the long-term continuation of family-owned businesses – 30 percent survive to the second generation, 12 percent to the third.
Yet, here at the shore in Southern Ocean County, success stories are found. Says the chamber, “We pride ourselves that our community is made up of independent businesses, with the majority being family-owned and operated.”
The value of communication was a theme in the March 28 forum.
In Boyle’s background as a certified public accountant, he has worked with many family business owners. He teaches managerial and financial accounting at Stockton and holds a master’s in business administration.
“The mission, vision and goals of the business should be understood and there should be a well-formed strategic plan,” he said of communication’s importance.
Also, “performance review” is a standard, even if that may be complicated by the fact that the boss-employee relationship is familial.
“The chain of command should be understood by family employees and non-family employees” was another of his talking points.
Noted Peg Reynolds, a co-owner of Reynolds Landscaping, Garden Shop & Garden Center with her husband, Mark, “If you are going to make it successful, everyone has to have the same level of what is expected. In our business, if you have the same level that ‘we are going to be the best at what we do,’ and as long as everyone in your family is on board with that, then I think it works.”
In their business, which has incorporated children and their spouses into the new services that grew from the original company, the new generation is extremely committed, she said. Boyle had shared the unfortunate opposite that nationwide, sometimes the owner’s sons or daughters feel entitled to arrive late and leave early.
Setting “boundaries” within the family was a sub-theme. Attendees of the program shared various takes on that. They said it isn’t always easy to avoid bringing work home, for instance, or sharing it at the dinner table.
“We always start dinner with ‘we’re not going to talk about work,’ said one attendee, with others laughing in agreement. “My brain never turns off,” said another.
Added Mary Finelli, second generation at JDM Andrews Inc. custom builders, “It’s a constant conversation. I think one of the troubles in trying to keep work out of the house is that an email comes through at 7 o’clock at night that’s really important or that you were waiting for.”
The percentage of family business owners retiring who have not chosen a successor is high – 47 percent. That statistic is startling considering that 40 percent of family business owners are expected to retire in 2017.
“They have to have a passion, they have to be educated, and they have to want to do it,” summarized Kathy Finelli, president of JDM Andrews.
Mary Finelli, at age 27, is one example of successful succession in progress. Father and JDM Andrews founder Don Finelli retired about two years ago, although the family does occasionally seek his input on ideas. Her mother, Kathy, is considering retirement in a couple of years. Mary, who holds a master’s degree, has taken over day-to-day operations and sales.
One conversation point was the issue of relinquishing financial and insurance matters when the founding generation has handled them for decades.
As the financial officer, “I’m trying to step out a little bit, but it’s really hard to give that position to someone outside of the family; it’s almost impossible,” Kathy Finelli noted. However, referring to Mary, “she has taken the company to another level with what she does.”
Mary Finelli, who said she is “constantly ready for the challenge” of extending the business, said one of the bigger challenges of transition today is the explosion of new technology and business software.
“Since the internet blew up, one thing that has made all small business more challenging is that there are so many new products constantly coming out and being advertised to clients. When they come to you, they are expecting you to know everything there is to know in the United States,” she said, to laughter of agreement. “I try to stay up to date because I am the front line of sales.”
“Just keeping up with Instagram” and other social media “is such a part of business today,” agreed Peg Reynolds. She added, “We have 700 to 800 accounts for maintenance and an office full of girls, but the world today is so fast.”
Mary Finelli surmised that changing business practices may be one reason the statistic is so low of businesses continuing into the next generation.
“When they started the company 30 years ago, there was a way of doing business, and the way of doing business has changed since then. But to make that transition and to get everybody in the office on board with those changes, it’s a lot.”
Mark Reynolds noted, “You start a company and it changes as the years go on, so your job description changes. ... You have to be extremely flexible to adapt to all the changes in the business.”
Theresa Strunk of Brant Beach-based Strunk Architecture spoke of the husband-wife partnership in business. When she came on board in the home office as the business grew, the couple learned the best ways to adapt to the sharing of business procedures.
Sometimes one spouse does their best work at different times of day as the other. The business founder may have been accustomed to Excel spreadsheets while the spouse joining the company prefers Quickbooks. A balance can be found, said Strunk, who has a degree in psychology.
“If certain ways of doing things brings out their best work, that’s how you should do it.”
“Our chamber recognizes the nurturing that each generation builds for the next,” said chamber CEO Lori Pepenella in a summary of Founded in Family, saying “the legacies contribute to what makes our region feel like home to all.”
With a new expansion and technology upgrades at the Manahawkin campus, Stockton University officials said they hope to offer more health science opportunities to students and increase the university’s presence in southern Ocean County.
“It’s more than just a beautiful facility,” Stockton President Harvey Kesselman said. “It’s about more opportunities for all students … and to provide them with the best preparation as we understand the need for this critical profession.”
Officials held a grand opening Thursday of the expanded Manahawkin campus, which added nearly 8,000-square-feet of space with seven physical assessment examination rooms, clinical labs and advanced technology for nursing students.
The expansion is one of several projects the university has worked on during the past year, including the ongoing $178.3 million Atlantic City campus being built on former empty lots at the end of Albany Avenue. That campus is scheduled to open this fall.
About 215 students take classes at the Manahawkin campus, including 24 students in the current cohort of the university’s 15-month accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.
University officials said the new building, the former site of Rothman Institute Orthopaedics and adjacent to the existing campus building at 712 East Bay Ave., will offer nursing students more room for hands-on learning experiences and additional general education courses closer to Ocean County residents.
The accelerated BSN students will spend one day a week in class at the Manahawkin site in addition to classes and clinical assignments elsewhere, including at Stockton’s main campus and AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center, Mainland Campus, both in Galloway Township.
Kesselman said the expansion was only the beginning of growth planned for the university in Ocean County.
Beach Haven Mayor Nancy Davis, a Stockton alumna and member of the university’s Board of Trustees, said she has long advocated for Stockton to have a stronger presence in southern Ocean County.
“I’m very excited about this expansion and the long-term investment,” she said. “There’s no doubt that the facility here will enrich the lives of southern Ocean County residents. I think Stockton will also … attract more people to this area and keep talented young people (to work) in this area.”
Students in white nursing scrubs sat in booths and benches in a new student lounge, walked in and out of exam rooms and worked in the clinical simulation lab, where they could practice inserting IVs and feeding tubes, give injections and move “patients” by using technologically equipped dummies.
Christine MacCotter, a nursing student in the program, said it was hard for her to imagine before that she could attend an advanced nursing program so close to where she lives in Barnegat Light.
Going into nursing as a second profession after leaving a career teaching English, MacCotter said the program has made it more possible to include nontraditional students such as herself.
“There’s such a need for excellent medical care here,” said Stephanie Chung, who holds a doctorate in nursing and is an assistant professor in Stockton’s nursing program in Manahawkin and Galloway Township. “We can even simulate patient conditions using an iPad now. This really is the future of health care.”
A nursing student who needs to practice injections is not likely to find many willing volunteers.
But the JUNO patient simulators at Stockton University’s new Manahawkin Expansion won’t complain, no matter how many times they are jabbed.
One of them might say “that hurts,” but only if an instructor programs it to respond.
Stockton officials formally dedicated the new 7,915 square-foot expansion to its Bay Avenue location on March 8.
Formerly Rothman Institute Orthopaedics, the expanded location will serve Stockton’s nursing students. It includes a six-bed Foundations of Nursing lab, complete with simulated patients, and seven physical assessment examining rooms, one of which includes the talking simulator.
“We understand the need for this critically important profession,” Stockton President Harvey Kesselman said, adding that the expansion is just the next step in Stockton’s commitment to providing programs in Ocean County.
“This is an opportunity for all of our students and this wonderful community,” he said.
Speaking in the central lobby and student lounge area, Kesselman said a survey of students using the site had included a comment from one student that if they added a lounge area, the site would be perfect.
“So we did,” he said.
Beach Haven Mayor and Stockton trustee Nancy Davis, a professor emerita of pathology at Stockton, said the university’s growing presence in the county will enrich the lives of residents.
“I know students will be dazzled by this center,” she said. “We want to keep our talented young people in the area.”
Interim Dean of Health Services Dr. Elizabeth Calamidas thanked personnel from all of the Stockton departments involved in creating the state-of-the-art center, including health sciences, facilities and information technology.
BSN graduate Daniel Paganelli of Forked River said the Manahawkin site is not just a campus, but a second home for students in the TRANSCEL Nursing program, a 15-month accelerated program which provides students who already have a bachelor’s degree the opportunity to become an RN with a BSN. Students also do clinical rotations in area medical facilities.
Paganelli said students receive personalized attention in the demanding nursing program and make connections at medical facilities with future job potential.
“We worked hard, and the professors did the same thing,” he said. “This is a friendly and welcoming space.”
AtlantiCare CEO Lori Herndon attended the event as did State Sen. Chris Connors and Assemblywoman DiAnne Gove, both R-Ocean. Connors, a 1978 graduate of Stockton, said it has been fun to watch the young state college grow to the university it is today.
Connor also admired the art work and duck decoys from the Noyes Museum of Art at Stockton that are displayed at the site.
“I’m an old bayman,” Connors said. “I look at the decoys and it shows how Stockton points to the future but also respects the past. It is a cultural and economic boon to the area.”
After the ribbon cutting guests toured the facility and students demonstrated their work on the simulators.
“With a simulator, you can take your time and repeat something until you learn it,” Matt Ciarello of Egg Harbor Township said. “With a real patient that would be awkward.”
“This is what Stockton is all about,” Provost Lori Vermeulen said. “We are expanding to serve students and we are very proud of that.”
The location also offers general education courses, and currently about 250 students currently take classes in Manahawkin. The location will also offer 10 summer classes including Science of Forecasting Waves, Baseball History and Literature, Beaches, and Car Culture in America.
Local students and community members got some unique insight and educational tips during a seminar on the importance of recognizing and dealing with sexual violence, held recently at the Bay Avenue Community Center in Manahawkin.
“Breaking the Silence on Sexual Violence: Media Literacy and Sexual Violence Law,” was the title of the seminar led by members from the St. Francis Community Center Counseling Services. The seminar was broken up into three parts, beginning with an introductory presentation about gender roles and sexual violence definitions by Meghan McAleer, LSW, the Sexual Abuse and Assault Prevention Program Coordinator at St. Francis.
McAleer began by defining the concept of media literacy. “It is how we understand, or how we interpret the information we’re getting,” from any kind of media source, she said.
The concept of media literacy was a large part of the seminar, because as McAleer noted, we need to critically examine the things we interpret daily from the media in order to be media literate about things such as gender and sexuality.
She discussed topics such as gender versus sex, hyper masculinity, and what it means to “be a man” versus “act like a lady.” Showing funny commercial advertisements and videos to the audience, McAleer engaged with them by throwing candy out to individuals who shouted out correct answers, getting the conversation about sexual violence started in a comfortable atmosphere.
“If you’re laughing, you’re learning,” she joked. Sexual violence is a sensitive topic for many, and McAleer made it very easy for individuals to start a productive discussion around the topic.
She helped the audience to describe what we all consider to be stereotypical characteristics of men and women. The transition into a discussion about sexual violence came when she asked the audience: “What happens when a man or women acts outside of the stereotypes?”
Jumping from the lighter topics to the statistics, McAleer noted that 1 in every 2 women and 1 in every 5 men has had an experience with sexual violence in their lifetimes. These numbers are bit unsettling, especially when you notice the stark gap between males and female.
McAleer did a great job in drawing the audience’s attention to everyday things that contribute to our distorted view of sexual violence; for example, certain movies and television shows that implicitly normalize sexually violent culture, like Beauty and The Beast, among others.
“I love Game of Thrones, but what do they always do on that show?” McAleer said, “They fight and rape women.”
Following her presentation was Donna Velardi, RN, FN-CSA, the SART/FNE Coordinator from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office.
Velardi is a member of the SART for Ocean County, which stands for the Sexual Assault Response Team.
“New Jersey is special because all 21 counties participate in the SART program,” she said.
The SART team is made up of law enforcement agents, a Confidential Sexual Violence Advocate, and a Forensic Nurse Examiner. Additional members that can play a part in the process are prosecutors and hospital staff members.
When talking about sexual violence, Velardi said, “It’s really about power and control.” When Velardi helps a patient, or a victim of sexual abuse, she noted that the victim is always in charge.
“They get to tell me how they want to do things,” she said.
According to her presentation, SART exists to provide victim-centered services, to help minimize re-victimization, to provide forensic medical exams quickly and with quality evidence examination, and to assist in prosecution. The SART program is required by law and is coordinated by the NJ Division of Criminal Justice and operated by the County Prosecutor.
The Ocean County SART program works with four different hospitals in Ocean County, including: Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Monmouth Medical Center Southern Campus in Lakewood, Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin, and Community Medical Center in Toms River. Velardi said that if a victim of sexual assault visits one of these hospitals for help, they need not wait in the emergency room. These patients are taken back to a specially designated room for SART that allows them easy and quick access to advocates that will help them.
“I have been a Forensic Nurse for 18 years,” said Velardi. “I’ve done over 200 cases of sexual assault in my lifetime.”
She also noted that the SART program and all of the services and resources it provides its patients are all grant funded and free to patients, excluding sexually transmitted disease (STD) testing.
Velardi ended her presentation on a positive note, noting that more males have been recorded coming forward after incidents of sexual abuse.
“This means that these men are becoming better educated, and stronger,” when it comes to sexual violence, she said.
Following Velardi was the final aspect of the seminar, which included comments from Stockton University Interim Police Chief Cynthia Parker and Stafford Township Police Chief Thomas Dellane.
“Sexual violence (response) is not something that the law enforcement department does by themselves,” Chief Parker said.
Accompanying Parker at the seminar were officials from Stockton, including the Clery Compliance Coordinator Rosanne Latoracca, Title IX Coordinator Valerie Hayes, and Director of the Women’s Gender and Sexuality Center Laurie Dutton.
“The more we educate, it’s all about prevention, but the big thing is consent,” Hayes emphasized.
Chief Dellane noted that the department has a very strong focus on providing the needed services to the community, regarding sexual assault. “Our purpose, our goal, is to prevent re-victimization,” he said.
Velardi mentioned that, “we would like everyone to come forward (for help)…but not everyone is ready.”
To this, an audience member said: “The important takeaway is to tell someone.”
Stockton University expanded not only its physical footprint at its Manahawkin campus over the winter break, but also added more health science opportunities for students.
The college absorbed an adjacent building, the former site of Rothman Institute Orthopaedics, at its 712 East Bay Ave. location to give nursing students more room for hands-on learning experiences and a place to offer additional general education courses near students living in Ocean County.
Edward Walton, Stockton interim associate dean of health sciences, said the new site helps expand the 15-month accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program and the Registered Nurse-to-BSN program, which are conducted both online and in Manahawkin.
University officials said the additional 7,915-square-foot space is fitted with seven physical assessment examination rooms and has room for nursing students to take part in a six-bed Foundations of Nursing lab.
The accelerated BSN students will spend one full day a week in class at the Manahawkin site in addition to classes and clinical assignments elsewhere, including at Stockton’s main campus in Galloway Township.
The new site includes a lobby, or lounge area, with seating for students to eat lunch. There is also a faculty lounge and a small student-hospitality area with snacks and coffee.
“They are here all day, and we want them to feel welcomed and comfortable,” Michele Collins-Davies, site manager, said in a statement.
The accelerated BSN program is for students with a bachelor’s degree who want to become registered nurses. Twenty-four students make up the current class, and a new class will start in the fall.
Stockton’s physical expansion will also lead to an increased number of general education and core health science classes offered at the Manahawkin location. Officials said they hope to increase the number from 19 to 31 by the fall.
The university is currently working on expanding its campus in Atlantic City in a $178.3 million project being built on former empty lots at the end of Albany Avenue. The campus will include parking spaces, housing, an academic building and more. It is scheduled to be open for the fall 2018 semester.
Students arriving for the spring semester at Stockton University’s Manahawkin Instructional site discovered it had grown to more than three times its size.
The expansion into the adjacent 7,915 square-foot building at 712 E. Bay Avenue, former site of Rothman Institute Orthopaedics gives nursing students more room for hands-on learning in the six-bed Foundations of Nursing lab and seven physical assessment examining rooms that look like a professional medical office.
The expansion will also provide room for additional general education courses for the convenience of students living in Ocean County.
“I love it, said student Ann Smith, 21, of Manahawkin, who along with classmates in the Accelerated BSN, or TRANSCEL program, used the site for the first time on Jan. 18.
The Accelerated BSN students will spend one full day a week in class at the site in addition to their clinical assignments and other classes.
Art work from the Noyes Museum collection, including some by Fred Noyes, is exhibited throughout the site, adding color and interest.
“It is much more spacious and very beautiful,” said student Christian Dy of Mullica Hill.
The new site includes a lobby/lounge area with seating where students can eat lunch. There is a faculty lounge and small student hospitality area with snacks and coffee.
“They are here all day, and we want to them feel welcomed and comfortable,” said Michele Collins-Davies, the site manager.
“They did a really good job,” said student Lindsay Carignan of Somers Point, who said her drive is a bit longer now on Thursdays, but it’s worth it.
Edward Walton, interim associate dean of health sciences at Stockton said the new site facilitates the expansion of the 15-month Accelerated BSN program and the RN to BSN program, a hybrid program that meets both online and in Manahawkin.
“The RN to BSN is for the student who wants the flexibility of an online program, but also some in-class support,” Walton said. “The site fits the needs of students in a welcoming environment.”
The Accelerated BSN program is for students with a bachelor’s degree, typically in a health or science field, who wants to become a registered nurse with a BSN. Twenty-four students are in the current cohort and a new class will start in the fall.
The expansion will also allow Stockton to increase the number of general education and core Health Sciences courses that are offered in Manahawkin from the current 19 to 31 in the fall.
Summer courses are also offered at the Manahawkin site, and 2018’s offerings will include Science of Forecasting Waves, Baseball History and Literature, Hispanic Literature and Film, Car Culture in America, Beaches, Business Basics and Introduction to Health Sciences.
An official dedication for the expansion will be held at 11:30 a.m. March 8.
For more information on courses offered at Manahawkin click here or go to Stockton.edu/Manahawkin.
For more information about nursing programs at Stockton, click here or go to Stockton.edu/health-sciences.
Students at Stockton University can take advantage of discounted rates for tuition and housing beginning in summer 2018, the college announced this week after its Board of Trustees meeting.
The meeting also included approval of housing rates, naming of the event room at the new Atlantic City Campus for Fannie Lou Hamer, and selection of a new vice president for student affairs.
Under the discounted summer rate offer, undergraduate students who take at least one class at one of Stockton’s satellite instructional sites in Atlantic City, Seaview, Woodbine, Manahawkin and Hammonton will pay $3,278 for three classes, in effect getting one course free. The cost of one four-credit course will be $1,639 for tuition and fees. The summer rate is available to both Stockton students and students attending other colleges.
Additionally, students who reside in the new Atlantic City Campus apartments, scheduled to open in the fall of 2018, will be eligible for a discounted 12-month housing rate, saving a student about $600 over two semesters.
The board also approved 2018-19 housing rates, some of which increased as much as 3 percent over this year. Housing costs per semester will range from $3,027 to $5,700, depending on location and size.
In other business, the board approved a resolution to name the event room at the new Atlantic City Campus Academic Building after civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer.
“Fannie Lou Hamer made history on the Boardwalk of Atlantic City,” Stockton President Harvey Kesselman said. “As the new Stockton campus continues to rise, there could be no greater public honor than to recognize Mrs. Hamer’s contribution to the march toward freedom and social justice than naming the new event room — a place where students, faculty, staff and community will come to learn, reflect and listen to voices of reason — in her honor.”
The board also approved Christopher C. Catching as Stockton’s new vice president for student affairs. Catching, who will start in February, comes from Southern Connecticut State University, where he is assistant vice president for student affairs. He will replace Thomasa Gonzalez, who is retiring after more than 30 years at Stockton.
Kesselman said Catching’s experience in strategic planning and student success programs, and his interest in social justice and inclusion mesh perfectly with Stockton’s mission to develop engaged and effective citizens and provide an environment of excellence for a diverse student body.
“He understands and represents the values and vision of Stockton,” Kesselman said. “He is a great fit for us.”