Rowan University, the New Jersey public university of 10,000 which Gov. Chris Christie wants to merge with Rutgers University, is calling for qualifications from PR firms to assist the school with major communications efforts during the “time of transition.”

Christie’s plan is opposed by Rutgers officials but can be implemented by executive order or legislative action.

An RFQ from Rowan to PR firms notes that since the January announcement close to 300 stories have appeared nationally and statewide.

Although based in New Jersey, the Philadelphia market is a key target for its PR, marketing and recruitment.

Strategic brand development, internal communications, strategic planning, crisis management and social media are among aspects of PR the university is seeking from firms, which will be judged on experience in five categories: higher ed, crisis communications, fee structure, issue campaigns in NJ/PA markets, long-term issue planning.

Firms are being asked to submit proposals by March 16. View the RFQ (PDF).