New Jersey has a history that dates back to the nation’s founding. Its residents are often known for their pride and love of family and tradition — particularly religious traditions. The dominant religion in New Jersey is Christianity, with more than seven in 10 residents identifying as members of the Christian faith. Among the state’s Christians, more than half are Catholic, and in fact, New Jersey is among the most Catholic states in the nation, with 42% of residents identifying as Catholic, fourth to Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.
Nationwide, 24% of Americans identify as Catholic. One in 10 New Jersey residents identifies as evangelical Protestant compared to 26% nationally, 13% identify as mainline Protestant compared to 18% nationally, and 4% identify as historically black Protestant compared to 7% nationally.
Education in New Jersey
As its religious composition might suggest, New Jersey is home to several Christian colleges and universities, most of which are Catholic. Out of its 12 degree-granting Christian colleges, eight are Catholic. New Jersey Christian colleges vary in size and in their academic and extracurricular offerings so that students across the state and region can find the best fit for them. Students seeking a larger environment may be interested in Seton Hall University in South Orange, which serves just fewer than 10,000 students.
Others may be interested in smaller schools, such as Bloomfield-based, Presbyterian, Bloomfield College, Methodist-affiliated Drew University in Madison, or tiny Wesleyan-affiliated Somerset Christian College in Newark. New Jersey is also home to two Christian colleges entirely devoted to nursing: Holy Name Medical Center School of Nursing, in Teaneck, and Saint Francis Medical Center School of Nursing, in Trenton.
The state of New Jersey overall has a stellar reputation in higher education. Its six-year college graduation rate of 66.5% far exceeds the national average of 56%. While nationwide, only 28% of the population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher, 34.5% of the New Jersey population does so, placing it among the best educated states in the country. And while its college enrollment from 2005 to 2010 increased slower than the national average, 16.9% compared to 20.2%, the state’s students show promise for the future, averaging a 1508 on the SAT, compared to 1500 nationwide.
Working in New Jersey
Christian colleges in New Jersey will be at the forefront of educating the state’s future religious and business leaders. After being hit hard by the national recession, the state is in recovery mode and expects to see 7.7% employment growth between now and 2020. Some of the professional occupations that will see the greatest percentage of growth include computer and math-based jobs, at 12.7%; community and social service jobs, at 12.2%; health care practitioner jobs, at 11.2%; life, physical, and social sciences jobs, at 10.8%, and legal or business and finance jobs, at 10.5%.
Students enrolled in colleges in New Jersey may benefit from earning degrees in computer science, non-profit management, nursing, biochemistry, law, or finance.
New Jersey’s college students all have access to high-quality degrees in in-demand fields, but those enrolled in the state’s Christian colleges and universities have the added advantage of degrees and focuses in ministry, theology, and religion. Students enrolled in Christian colleges also are exposed to ways to develop Christian leadership skills and education taught through a Christian worldview. To find the Christian college in New Jersey that’s right for you, search our list below.