College may be no picnic at times, but for some south Jersey students it will be a resort.
Richard Stockton College will start using the historic Seaview Resort in Galloway Township as a learning lab for students studying Hospitality Management, according to Tim Kelly, a spokesman for the school. And that means about 50 select students will get to live there instead of a regular dorm, increasing their exposure to the business many of them hope to work in one day.
The college bought the 297-room hotel, spa and two-golf course property last year for about $18 million.
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“Stockton has partnered with Seaview in a variety of ways for nearly 40 years,” Stockton President Herman Saatkamp Jr. told the Star-Ledger last year when the deal went through. “We are now looking forward to having this magnificent facility as part of the Stockton family and operating at the same level people have come to expect of Seaview."
The resort, located eight miles from Atlantic City, will still be open to the public. Stockton will own the Bay Golf Course, which hosts LPGA tournaments, while the Marriott Corp. will still own the Pines Golf Course, as well as timeshare facilities at the resort.
Student tuition will not be affected because the money to buy the resort came from the college’s Capital Investment Fund, not Stockton’s operating budget, according to Kelly.
College officials defended the purchase during a time when New Jersey’s public colleges are cash-strapped because it was cheaper than building new dorms to house their students, they say.
An new entrance and driveway will be built to separate students and resort guests, officials say.