2020-2021-2022 GettyImages-1268593533

Welcoming the NJCU Community to the Spring 2021 Semester

Dear Members and Friends of the NJCU Community,

Happy New Year and welcome back for the start of the Spring 2021 semester!

While 2020 was one of the most challenging years imaginable, there is optimism for the future as we move further into 2021. As the vaccines begin to be administered across our state and the nation, brighter days are ahead.

As actor Michael J. Fox once said “I think the more unexpected something is, the more there is to learn from it.”

We all have learned a lot from the experiences of the last year, and as the spring 2021 semester commences, I want to highlight some good news.


Robert M. Kaye
NJCU Receives $1 Million Gift from Developer and Entrepreneur Robert M. Kaye
NJCU has announced that the University has received a $1 million gift from entrepreneur, philanthropist and real estate developer Robert M. Kaye. The gift will be among the largest in the University’s history and becomes the second lead gift in NJCU’s $10 million campaign to develop its Center for Music, Dance and Theater (CMDT) and The Guarini Performing Arts Center (GPAC) as the pillars of University Place, a $400 million redevelopment of the institution's West Campus. NJCU will dedicate the center’s recital hall as the Robert M. Kaye Recital Hall in appreciation for his generosity to the institution.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration, 2021
NJCU Hosts Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration
On January 19, NJCU hosted the 32nd Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration, as a virtual event. The theme of the 2021 celebration was “The Soul of America: Fighting for Liberation and Everyday Justice”. The Keynote Speaker was Dr. Brian Bridges, Acting Secretary of Higher Education, who engaged with the audience in a Q&A session. Dr. Sonya Donaldson, the Director of the Lee Hagan Africana Studies Center, moderated the event. President Sue Henderson made opening remarks. Student Thyquel Halley offered profound closing remarks.
PBS Newshour
NJCU Featured on PBS NewsHour
On January 12, NJCU was featured on the nationally-televised program PBS NewsHour, during its signature “Rethinking College” series as part of NewsHour’s overall look at the future of higher education. The series reports on how campuses are adapting to an ever-shifting pandemic and the disproportionate impact on students of color. The January 12 episode was entitled "The Pandemic’s Disproportionate Impact on Students of Color" and included interviews with Jodi Bailey, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, and Tyler Lopez, a sophomore in the Jazz Studies program. The segment was entirely filmed on campus. On January 19, NJCU was featured a second time in a segment entitled "How the Pandemic is Impacting College Students’ Mental Health" and Maria Barros, a senior majoring in Illustration, was interviewed. 
Latest Updates
NJCU Announces Administrative and Staff Updates
With the start of the spring 2021 semester, NJCU has announced changes in the Office of the President, the Division of Student Affairs and the Division of Academic Affairs. Jodi Bailey has been appointed Interim Vice President for Student Affairs. Ben Rohdin has been appointed Interim Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Success. Andrés Acebo will be the new Interim Chief of Staff and Secretary to the Board of Trustees, succeeding Guillermo de Veyga and Virginia Meléndez. Dr. Adrian Franco has been named the inaugural Executive Director of The Frank J. Guarini Institute for International Studies. In Academic Affairs, Dr. Jennifer Jones retired as Director of Academic Career Planning and Placement — after 43 years of service to NJCU. Dr. John Grew, Professor of Biology, will serve as the Interim Executive of the Office of Research, Grants, and Sponsored Programs.
Read more about the updates in Academic Affairs, Student Affairs and the Office of the President.


Sneakers on a Basketball Court
NJAC, NJCU Announces Plans for 2020-21 Basketball Season
NJCU will play basketball this winter. The New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) Board of Athletic Administrators, in coordination with the administration at each of its full-member institutions, announced its plans for the 2021 conference women's and men's basketball seasons. If conditions safely permit, each participating basketball program will compete in eight (8) regular season conference games with the first contests tentatively scheduled for Friday, February 5. 
NJCU Women's Wrestling Photo by NorthJersey.com
NJCU Women’s Wrestling Featured in USA Today
The debut of the inaugural season of the trailblazing NJCU women's wrestling program has been delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, but the Gothic Knights, under the direction of former World Champion and two-time United States Olympian Elena Pirozhkova is gearing up for an abbreviated yet historical 2020-21 season. On January 14, writer Melanie Anzidei profiled the pioneering program —  the first and only collegiate women's wrestling program in the history of the state of New Jersey and the first ever in the tri-state area — in NorthJersey.com and nationally in USA Today.


Timothy Fogler (NJCU Alumni Association Advisory Board Member)
Meet Alumni Association Advisory Board Member: Timothy Fogler
NJCU recently announced the launch of its first Alumni Association. Meet Alumni Association Advisory Board Member Timothy Fogler `72. Over the coming months we will introduce you to all of our members who are volunteering their time to serve NJCU and you — our nearly 55,000 graduates.
Amelia Valentin (NJCU Alumni Association Advisory Board Member)
Meet Alumni Association Advisory Board Member: Amelia Valentin
Next, we’re happy to introduce you to another Alumni Association Advisory Board Member: Amelia Valentin `19. Watch her video and learn about what she valued during her time at NJCU and how she’d like to serve alumni like you!


Each month, we will share headlines of NJCU alumni. Do you have news to share? Email us at news@njcu.edu:

  • Bob Delaney `85, is featured on the podcast Before the Lights. Delaney, the 2020 NCAA Theodore Roosevelt Award winner, discusses his legendary undercover life infiltrating the mob, his 30-year career as an NBA official and executive and his experience with PTSD. The author of two books, his work continues to help Americans in the miltary, law enforcement and the sports world. Listen to the podcast...
  • Iveth Mollinedo `10, `18 M.A. was awarded the 2020 New Jersey Association of School Librarians (NJASL) Ruth Toor Outstanding School Librarian Award. Mollinedo is the School Librarian in Cliffside Park. She was featured in an NJEA commercial. Watch the Spanish version...
  • Francisco E. Rodriguez `04 M.A., was selected by the Long Branch Board of Education to be next superintendent of the district. Rodriguez has served the community in a leadership capacity for nearly two decades. He earned a master's degree in administration from NJCU. Read the story from the Asbury Park Press...


Comic Book Careers
Careers of Comic Book Art and Illustration
On Thursday, January 28 at 2 p.m., the NJCU Center for the Arts will host a virtual discussion entitled "Careers of Comic Book Art and Illustration" about the creative process and what it takes to thrive in the fields of Comic Book Art and Illustration. NJCU Professor Dennis Dittrich and Taylor Sterling `10 of RAE Comics are the speakers for the conversation. Sterling is a 2010 NJCU alumni with a BFA in Illustration. Today, he is the president and lead artist for raecomics.com.
RAE Comics
Inside the World of Comics and Illustration
Have you ever wanted to be a comic book artist or book illustrator? If you love comic books, you’ll want to mark Sunday, January 31 at 3 p.m. on your calendar for a special free, virtual event discussion “Inside the World of Comics and Illustration”. The event will feature artists Taylor Sterling, `10, NJCU Professor Dennis Dittrich and Tom Daly. It will be moderated by writer Edie Nugent.


Bayfront-aerial-Jersey-City (Rendering courtesy Jersey City Redevelopment Agency)
Renderings and details are emerging regarding an exciting redevelopment project adjacent to the NJCU West Campus along Route 400 and the banks of the Hackensack River. The 95-acre Bayfront Redevelopment Plan was approved by the City of Jersey City in 2018 and will transform the banks of the Hackensack River into one of the East Coast’s largest mixed-income developments. According to Jersey Digs, many as 8,000 residential units, including affordable housing and 23 acres of open space are envisioned at the site, which will connect with the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail during a roughly half-mile extension from the system’s West Side Avenue station to a new Route 440 terminus station near the Hackensack River. 

Each month, we will share notable news pertaining to the City of Jersey City. Sign up for more updates from Mayor Steven Fulop and the City of Jersey City by using this form.
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