PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – In another step toward an odd couple union, the Boards of Trustees of Thomas Jefferson University and Philadelphia University have approved their definitive agreement to merge.

Both institutions call it a “forward thinking transaction” to combine the Center City health sciences university with the design, architecture and fashion school in East Falls.

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Stephen Klasko, president and CEO at Jefferson, says the partners “discovered their inner”

“And by definition, the fact that makes us different makes us perfect partners.”

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Philadelphia University President Stephen Spinelli adds “we’re taking the market and brand power of a 194-year-old university and a 132-year-old university and saying ‘how do we bring that together in the best way’.”

PhilaU Student Government Association President Naomi Sampat, a senior who majors in Fashion Merchandising and Management, says the campus culture is unlike any other:

“Students here are so career driven and focused on what they do.”

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Pending all regulatory and accrediting agency approvals, they hope to complete the merger in 2017.