American Indian dancers in elaborate regalia moved to the low beat of drums a few weeks ago, as approximately 8,000 spectators and 8,500 participants gathered at the Salem County Fairgrounds to join in the Nanticoke Lenni-Lenape Tribal Nation’s 38th annual powwow. The Nanticoke, a tribe native to New Jersey, hosts the gathering to strengthen ties across tribes, reunite tribe members with families and share their culture with non-native Americans. It’s the only annual gathering the tribe holds that’s open to the public, and attendees come from all over. A family of Aztec American Indians visited from Mexico City, Mexico, to participate in the dances. “Powwow is not only a chance to gather the native community,” said Lia Gould, organizer of the event and daughter of Nanticoke Chief Mark Gould, “It’s an opportunity to educate the masses.
Two of South Jersey’s universities are in expansion mode and we thought it would be interesting to compare and contrast their vital statistics, side by side, using data from the state budget. You can see that enrollment is up at both universities (so are fees) and state-funded positions are also up at Rowan University. It will be interesting to see whether the chatter around Rowan’s plans to expand in Atlantic City comes to anything, since Stockton University is rolling out ever-bigger plans for the city. On the one hand, expansion could bring more jobs and investment to the area, but on the other hand these institutions don’t pay property taxes. Since we wrote about Stockton’s plans to further expand in Atlantic City, we’ve also heard more people questioning the university’s debt load and its tuition costs, so we looked at the numbers. The amount of state support that Rowan receives is much greater – my guess is that this is tied to Rowan’s medical programs, but it’s not clear. And Stockton is slightly more expensive than Rowan, by these measures.
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Students at Frog Pond Elementary School in Little Egg Harbor donated 821 pairs of socks to Covenant House, a homeless shelter for homeless youth, in Atlantic City earlier this month. The idea to collect the socks came fromKerry Gunn, who teaches fifth grade at the school and showed her students a facebook video by Kid President Robby Novak, who pointed out that socks (according to some metrics) are among the most-needed and least-donated clothing items. Gunn said she presented the idea to her fellow fifth-grade teachers who supported it. “We called this service project, ‘Socktober–Kids Helping Kids,’” she said, in a statement. In response to a series of questions (“Who donated the most socks? Why’d that person have so many socks?