Greetings from Montclair,
Happy New Year!
As we head into 2024, we’re celebrating an extraordinary amount of work toward the greater good that is happening with the help of our community partners.
As you can tell from the cover, some of that good work is taking place in Paterson, a vibrant and diverse community facing many challenges, where our collaborations are providing signs of progress and a future of promise. As you’ll read in Paterson’s Promise, we are partnering with Paterson schools and the City of Paterson on numerous fronts, including the development of the Charles J. Muth Museum of Hinchliffe Stadium and a revitalization initiative we’re calling “One Square Mile.”
This is the type of transformational work that can be done when universities become true partners with the communities they serve and listen closely to their actual needs. With the generous support from Montclair alumnus Chuck Muth and his wife, Laura, Montclair is able to commit to running the Muth Museum as a community-engaged learning hub where every Paterson school child will have an opportunity to understand the role that Paterson played as a linchpin in the civil rights movement and the desegregation of baseball. At the same time, Montclair students from a variety of majors will gain hands-on learning opportunities by organizing and curating all aspects of the museum.
Our One Square Mile initiative is another example of laying down roots and partnering with a community to respond to issues in ways that can make a true impact. After engaging community organizations, listening to folks who articulated real needs and aspirations, and asking where we could make a difference by tapping into our knowledge and resources, we were pointed to the heart of the Fourth Ward.
With a grant from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, and our partnership with Paterson Public Schools, we began our work by turning Eastside High School into a University-assisted community school that provides ESL classes for adults and an after-school program for students, with more services to come.
Our work in Paterson is an example of how a university can maximize its potential by harnessing its partnerships to develop solutions alongside communities that share a vision of what is possible when we work together.
I am grateful for a university community – students, faculty staff and alumni – that understands the educational value in working toward the greater good and making the world a better place in the process.
Also included in this issue are innovative updates to our curriculum, the launch of our summer Pre-College Program for ambitious high school students, and the introduction of Bloomfield College of Montclair State University – the exciting result of our merger with Bloomfield College. I’m energized about all of the progress taking place at Montclair, and hope to see you on campus soon.