Public 4-Year Schools

William Paterson University’s 40th Annual Jazz Room Series

The William Paterson University Jazz Orchestra performs under the direction of David Demsey, DMA, professor of music and coordinator of jazz studies

Launched in 1978, the Jazz Room has welcomed nearly 500 jazz legends to the stage, including Sonny Rollins, Wynton Marsalis, Wayne Shorter, Joe Williams, Marian McPartland, Slide Hampton, Kenny Burrell, Joe Lovano, Kenny Garrett, Clark Terry, Michael and Randy Brecker, the Vanguard Orchestra, and more. Concerts have encompassed the entire spectrum of jazz, from early jazz and swing to avant garde, and from intimate solo performances to big bands. The performance series provides support for the University’s internationally renowned Jazz Studies Program, founded in 1973, which draws students from across the United States and abroad under the current direction of pianist Bill Charlap.

The fall Jazz Room celebrates the 40th anniversary season with a special WP Jazz Orchestra concert paying tribute to works by current and former William Paterson composers on November 5. The Nancy Marano Quartet kicked off the season on October 8, followed by saxophonist Melissa Aldana on October 22. The Barry Harris Quartet will feature saxophonist Larry McKenna on November 12 and the Horacee Arnold Trio with bassist Buster Williams holds sway on December 3. The fall Jazz Room season will close with a holiday celebration featuring the WP Jazz Orchestra and special guests performing portions of The Nutcracker Suite and holiday tunes arranged for popular jazz vocalists.

The Nancy Marano Quartet led by celebrated New York vocalist and William Paterson jazz faculty member Nancy Marano opened the season on October 8. Marano led her quartet through a program of her arrangements of American popular standards and jazz. Her quartet featured fellow William Paterson jazz faculty bassist Steve LaSpina, William Paterson jazz alumnus, pianist Billy Test, and tenor saxophonist Joel Frahm.

To read more stories about William Paterson, scroll down:

William Paterson University’s Cotsakos College of Business Offers a Cutting-Edge Redesigned MBA Program and New MBA Pathway Certificate Program–New courses, more flexibility, and strong connection to industry

William Paterson University Hosts 2017 New Jersey Gubernatorial Debate on October 18, 2017
–Media partners included CBS broadcast affiliates in New York and Philadelphia and The Record/USA Today Network

Preakness Hall, State-of-the-Art Academic Facility on Campus, Officially Opens for Fall 2017 Semester–Project was partially funded by the New Jersey’s “Building Our Future” Bond Act

The Chilean international saxophonist Melissa Aldana will perform on Sunday, October 22 at 4 p.m. Aldana is the first female saxophonist to win the prestigious Thelonious Monk Competition. She will perform music that combines her South American musical roots with swing and modern jazz harmonies. She has performed on the large stages of many of the world’s great jazz festivals, and in the intimate confines of some of New York’s legendary clubs.

On Sunday, November 5 at 4 p.m., the WP Jazz Orchestra will perform works by current and former University composers to celebrate the four-decade series. Works by Rufus Reid, Cecil Bridgewater, Jim McNeely, Pete McGuinness, Bill Mobley, and founding director Thad Jones will be featured. Special guest artists will be on hand for solos.

The Barry Harris Quartet takes the stage with saxophonist Larry McKenna on Sunday, November 12 at 4 p.m. The 87-year-old Harris displays his more than seven-decade study of the classic bebop jazz style developed by Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk and others. Harris has made numerous trio recordings under his own name and appeared as an in-demand sideman with Dexter Gordon, Hank Mobley and countless others.

Drummer Horacee Arnold, a senior member of the William Paterson jazz faculty, and his trio will be joined by bassist Buster Williams on Sunday, December 3 at 4 p.m. Drummer Max Roach brought Arnold to New York, along with Tony Williams, in the late fifties. Arnold later performed with Chick Corea on the jazz fusion album and tourReturn to Forever. The concert will showcase Arnold’s illustrious career.

A special Jazz Room Holiday Celebration with the WP Jazz Orchestra and special guests is set for Saturday, December 9 at 8 p.m. The concert will feature several movements from the legendary Duke Ellington-Billy Strayhorn version of The Nutcracker Suite, and arrangements of the season from the repertoire of Ella Fitzgerald, Clark Terry, and the New York Voices’ Darmon Meader.

Cotsakos College of Business MBA student Lavene Gass-Youmans prepares a project in William Paterson University’s Global Financial Services Institute

William Paterson University’s Cotsakos College of Business Offers a Cutting-Edge Redesigned MBA Program and New MBA Pathway Certificate Program–New courses, more flexibility, and strong connection to industry

William Paterson University’s Cotsakos College of Business now offers a completely redesigned MBA program, providing more flexibility for working professionals and a curriculum focused on current and future industry demands. In fall 2017, the University also introduced a new MBA Pathway certificate program for business professionals with significant work experience. Together, these programs provide students with the opportunity to customize their MBA to meet their career goals.

“The redesigned MBA program at William Paterson was inspired by a continued demand in the marketplace to put more emphasis on strategy, technical innovation, and ethical leadership skills,” says Siamack Shojai, dean of the Cotsakos College of Business. “Our pragmatic coursework focuses on innovative and future-oriented business practices and strategies that permeate all functions and disciplines of business.”

The Cotsakos College of Business MBA program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business – International (AACSB), which recognizes only 5 percent of business programs worldwide and is considered the hallmark of excellence in business education. Located just 20 miles from New York City in suburban Wayne, New Jersey, the University focuses on offering MBA students a global perspective to enhance their business acumen while challenging students to think critically and serve in leadership roles in industry.

The MBA program features a blend of hybrid and online courses, along with weekend and evening classes to allow for maximum learning flexibility for working professionals. Students have the opportunity to customize their MBA by choosing from among seven areas of concentration; accounting with a CPA track, entrepreneurship, finance, general management, marketing, music management, and a new concentration in human resources management coming in spring of 2018.

The program features more than a dozen new MBA courses, each specifically designed to meet the needs of stakeholders seeking to hire MBA graduates. “These courses blend a thematic approach throughout the curriculum, focusing on top-down management, leadership, strategy, innovation and total career optimization,” says Shojai. “Each course is designed to offer students multiple perspectives in business learning, incorporating theory, practical application, case studies, quantitative knowledge, and advanced soft skill development.”

These new MBA courses focus on innovation, strategy, and corporate sustainability; accountancy blended with business decision making; business analytics using data technology; influence, persuasion, and negotiation skills offered through the University’s Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales; and an integrated learning course that enables students to gain hands-on business experience through experiential learning.

In addition to the full MBA program, the University just introduced a new MBA Pathway certificate program—a one-year, 18-credit graduate business certificate that lets students fast-track their transition to the Cotsakos College of Business MBA.

“Credits earned in the MBA Pathway can be applied to the MBA program. There is no GMAT or GRE test requirement. We welcome any undergraduate major and do not consider your undergraduate GPA if you have three or more years of progressive professional work experience,” explains Michael Yakubov, the University’s director of graduate business programs. “It is the perfect transition for working professionals who wish to ease back into academic life, while still pursuing—and accelerating—their careers.”

Upon successful completion of the MBA Pathway certificate, students are eligible to waive the GMAT/GRE requirement for admission into either the part-time or full-time MBA program.

“With the MBA Pathway certificate in hand, you are required to complete only 10 additional classes to earn your MBA,” Yakubov says.

From MBA Pathway to fully redesigned MBA, the program’s innovative response to marketplace demand is reaping benefits for MBA graduates. “Over 90 percent of our graduates are employed in management and leadership positions within six months after graduation,” says Shojai.

For more information about the University’s MBA program or MBA Pathway certificate, contact Michael Yakubov at 973-720-2678 or visit

Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno and Ambassador Phil Murphy respond to questions on William Paterson University’s Shea Center stage at the 2017 New Jersey Gubernatorial Debate.

William Paterson University Hosts 2017 New Jersey Gubernatorial Debate on October 18, 2017
–Media partners included CBS broadcast affiliates in New York and Philadelphia and The Record/USA Today Network

William Paterson University, along with its media partners, CBS broadcast affiliates in New York and Philadelphia and The Record/USA Today Network, hosted a 2017 New Jersey Gubernatorial Debate between Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno, the Republican candidate, and Ambassador Phil Murphy, the Democratic candidate, on Wednesday, October 18, 2017, in Shea Center for Performing Arts on campus. In a competitive process, the University’s partnership group was selected by the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) to sponsor the debate.

“This is a great honor for our University,” says President Kathleen Waldron. “Our participation in this important event for the fourth time, having hosting gubernatorial debates in 2013, 2009, and 1997, underscores our long institutional commitment to civic engagement. We are pleased to again play a significant role in our state’s electoral public affairs.”

Media partners provided coverage via television, radio, print, web and social media throughout New Jersey. The debate was broadcast live by WCBS-TV (New York), KYW-TV (Philadelphia), WCBS Radio (New York), WINS Radio (New York), and KYW Radio (Philadelphia) and the CBS broadcast was streamed on Facebook Live and via the websites of The Record and its sister Gannett New Jersey newspaper sites across the state. The broadcast also was simulcast in Spanish on CBS affiliates WLNY 10/55 and The CW Philly.

The debate was moderated by Kristine Johnson, co-anchor of WCBS-TV in New York, who also moderated the debate in 2013. The media panel included Jessica Dean, co-anchor of KYW-TV in Philadelphia; Alfred Doblin, the editorial page editor for The Record, who also served on the media panels in 2013 and 2009; and Levon Putney, a reporter for WCBS Radio in New York.

The University worked with its media partners to conduct digital town hall events which helped to develop themes and ideas for debate questions in the weeks leading up to the debate.

William Paterson University has a strong commitment to civic engagement. The University is one of the founding members of Campus Compact New Jersey, the statewide affiliate of the national Campus Compact that promotes public and community service to develop students’ citizenship skills. The institution is also a member of the American Democracy Project, a multi-campus initiative that seeks to create an intellectual and experiential understanding of civic engagement for undergraduates enrolled at institutions that are members of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU). In addition, William Paterson is the first public New Jersey college or university that requires new undergraduate students to take a course in civic engagement. During the 2016-17 academic year, students contributed 10,000 hours to community service projects.

From left are William Paterson University English department chairperson Ian Marshall, student representative to the University Board of Trustees Andrew Massefski, Board of Trustees chairman Fred Gruel, University President Kathleen Waldron, Passaic County Historian Ed Smyk, Assemblywoman Mila Jasey, Assemblyman Kevin Rooney, and WP kinesiology chairperson Kathy Gill.

Preakness Hall, State-of-the-Art Academic Facility on Campus, Officially Opens for Fall 2017 Semester–Project was partially funded by the New Jersey’s “Building Our Future” Bond Act

William Paterson University officially opened Preakness Hall – its second new academic facility in just over a year – at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sept. 29, 2017, with Assemblyman Kevin Rooney and Assemblywoman Mila Jasey among the more than 100 people in attendance. The project is part of a long-range plan to modernize facilities in the academic core of the campus.

The 58,000-square-foot facility houses four state-of-the-art kinesiology laboratories, a phlebotomy room, 14 smart classrooms, a 90-seat auditorium, numerous small and large group study rooms, the Writing Center, and offices for the English and Philosophy departments’ faculty. After just over a year of construction, it opened for use at the start of the fall 2017 semester.

“We set out to create a space that, by incorporating modern design with the latest technology in higher education, will encourage interaction between students and faculty,” said University President Kathleen Waldron. “With spaces meant to accommodate our smaller class sizes, several rooms dedicated to group study, and additional, more functional offices for faculty, I am confident that Preakness Hall will positively impact our students’ academic experience for many years to come.”

Taking the place of the more than 50-year-old Hunziker Wing, Preakness Hall is rich with twenty-first century technology. The kinesiology labs are respectively tailored for the study and research of body composition, human performance, human motion, and motor control. Each classroom has a high-definition projector with a 133-inch projection screen, and many boast an additional 90-inch flat screen display. The group study lounges are equipped with wireless collaboration pods, meaning students no longer have to worry about carrying cables and adapters for their electronic devices. If they have a document or PowerPoint presentation on any such device, all they need to do is log onto campus WiFi in order to feed that information onto a large display for their peers.

“Even though the bones of this building date back to 1955, I think you will agree with me that it is now a thoroughly modern academic facility, which, like University Hall, will serve William Paterson students well for many generations to come,” Fred Gruel, chair of the University’s Board of Trustees, told the crowd.

Both Preakness Hall and University Hall – which opened in the winter of 2016 – were partially funded by the State of New Jersey’s “Building Our Future” Bond Act. That same bond is off-setting the cost to rebuild another academic building on campus, Hunziker Hall, where construction has just begun and is slated for completion in summer 2018. That building will house additional smart classrooms and offices, group study rooms, a keyboard lab, a creative commons space, and the Black Box Theatre.

“I see orange and black in my house every day,” Rooney announced at the ceremony, joking about how many William Paterson students and alumni come in and out of his Bergen County home. The assemblyman’s wife, Hayley, has been the University’s equestrian team coach since 2004. “It gives me a different insight into what the students feel about William Paterson. I get to ask those hard questions: ‘Are you learning? Do you love the experience?’ And I will tell you, each and every time I’ve asked those students … they’ve enjoyed this institution, this experience, and their ability to not only get a job when they leave, but the feeling that you, as educators, bring to them.”

“To bring a project in under budget, on time, in the State of New Jersey, is amazing,” Rooney added.