William Paterson University

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William Paterson University
Established 1855
Type Public University
President Dr. Kathleen Waldron
Admin. staff 1,150
Students 11,423
Undergraduates 10,089
Postgraduates 1,334
Location Wayne Township, New Jersey, United States
Campus 370 acres (1.5 km2)
Colors Orange & Black          
Nickname Pioneers
Mascot Billy the Bear
Website www.wpunj.edu

William Paterson University, officially The William Paterson University of New Jersey, is an American public university located in Wayne, New Jersey, United States. The university is organized into five academic colleges: Arts and Communication, Cotsakos College of Business, Education, Humanities and Social Sciences, and Science and Health. Slightly under 11,500 students are enrolled across the five constituent colleges.[1]


Aerial view of the campus; this picture was taken from the east end of the campus, with WPU's Wightman Field football stadium visible near the foreground.

William Paterson University is located on a 370 acres (1.5 km2), hilly, wooded campus in northern New Jersey in the suburban town of Wayne. The campus borders on High Mountain Preserve, nearly 1,200 acres (4.9 km2) of wetlands and woodlands, and three miles (5 km) west of the historic Great Falls in Paterson. New York City is 20 miles (32 km) to the east, the Jersey Shore is an hour’s drive south, skiing is 30 miles (48 km) north, and the Meadowlands Sports Complex is a half-hour drive away.


Hobart Manor

William Paterson University was founded in 1855 as the Paterson City Normal School. For more than a century, training teachers for New Jersey schools was its exclusive mission. In 1951, the University moved to the present campus. Originally known as Ailsa Farms, the site was purchased by the state of New Jersey in 1948 from the family of Garret Hobart, twenty-fourth vice president of the United States. The original manor house, built in 1877, was the weekend retreat and summer residence of the Hobart family. Today the building is known as Hobart Manor and is home of the Office of the President and the Office of Institutional Advancement. Hobart Manor was designated a national and state landmark in 1976.

The University changed its name to Paterson State Teachers College when it relocated from Paterson in 1951. In 1966, the curriculum was expanded to include degree offerings other than those leading to a teaching career. In 1971, it was renamed The William Paterson College of New Jersey. The change of name honored William Paterson, who was the state’s first senator, its second governor, and a United States Supreme Court Justice appointed by President George Washington, and reflected both the institution’s beginnings in the city that also bears his name and the legislative mandate to move from a teachers' college to a broad-based liberal arts institution.

The Commission on Higher Education in June 1997 granted William Paterson university status.[citation needed]

Kathleen Waldron, the former president of Baruch College and a former senior executive at Citigroup, is the seventh president of William Paterson University. She took office August 2, 2010 to replace the retiring Arnold Speert, who had served as the school's president since 1985 and oversaw the further expansion of William Paterson's curriculum and campus.

Academics and Faculty[edit]

The institution’s faculty includes recipients of awards and grants from the Fulbright Program, the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Science Foundation. William Paterson counts 41 Fulbright scholars among its faculty. More than 90 percent of full-time faculty members hold the Ph.D. or highest degree in their field.[citation needed]

Undergraduate degree programs[edit]

University Commons

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degrees are granted in African, African American, and Caribbean Studies, anthropology, art, art history, Asian studies, chemistry, communication, communication disorders, early childhood education, Earth science, economics, elementary education, English, French and Francophone studies, geography, history, Latin American and Latino studies, liberal studies, mathematics, music, philosophy, political science, psychology, secondary education, sociology, Spanish, and women's and gender studies.

Bachelor of science (B.S.) degrees include accounting, applied health, athletic training, biology, biotechnology, business administration, chemistry, computer science, environmental science, exercise science, mathematics, physical education, professional sales, and public health. In addition, the nursing program leads to the bachelor of science in nursing (B.S.N.).

The Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) degree is awarded in fine arts. In the bachelor of music program, students can choose among performance, jazz, and music management.

Students may also pursue a certificate in early childhood, elementary, secondary, and special education.

The university’s Honors College offers tracks in biopsychology, cognitive science, humanities, life science and environmental ethics, management, marketing, music, performing and literary arts, social sciences, as well as independent study. Preprofessional programs are available in dentistry, engineering, law, medicine (which includes dentistry, optometry, podiatry, and veterinary science), pharmacology, physical therapy, and speech-language pathology.

Graduate degree programs[edit]

The university offers the master of arts (M.A.) degree in applied sociology, clinical and counseling psychology, English, history, professional communication, and public policy and international affairs. The master of science (M.S.) degree is offered in biology, biotechnology, communication disorders, exercise and sports studies, and nursing.

Graduate degrees also include the master of fine arts (M.F.A.) in art, the M.F.A. in creative and professional writing, the master of music (M.M.) with concentrations in music education, jazz studies (performance or arranging), and music management; and the master of business administration (M.B.A.) with concentrations in accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, marketing, and music management.

Graduate degrees in education include the M.Ed. in curriculum and learning, educational leadership, literacy, professional counseling, and special education, as well as the M.A.T. in elementary education.


The University’s is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, Commission on the Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs, Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, National Association of Schools of Art and Design, National Association of Schools of Music, and National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, among others.


1600 Valley Road Building

The University’s facilities include the Nel Bolger, RN, Nursing Laboratory and the 1600 Valley Road building, which includes interactive classrooms, the Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales with its professional sales laboratory, and the Financial Learning Center (a mock trading floor). The Power Art Center accommodates an array of studio arts, including three-dimensional design, photography, sculpture, ceramics, printmaking, woodworking, and painting.

William Paterson's expanded and renovated 232,000-square foot Science Building features 67 smart classrooms and instructional labs and 77 research laboratories.

The University also features other laboratories devoted to arts and sciences and large areas for environmental research. Hobart Hall is the communication building, housing TV broadcast studios, the WPSC radio station and sound engineering arts facilities.

The University Commons, including the John Victor Machuga Student Center with its food court and the Wayne Hall dining facility, is the hub of campus life, providing a venue for the entire University community to gather and interact.

Residential life[edit]

The University provides housing for nearly 2,600 students in ten residence halls, including two that opened in 2006. These newest residence halls, High Mountain East and West, offer learning communities in collaboration with the University’s Honors College, and feature smart classrooms that are used as part of the living/learning experience.

With accommodations ranging from double room suites to apartments, the University’s modern, smoke-free buildings range in size from 100 to 400 students and are coed by suite, with four residents sharing a suite or apartment. First-year freshmen start out in traditional residence halls, while upper-class students and older transfer students experience the added independence of the apartments, Pioneer Hall and Heritage Hall.

Student organizations and activities[edit]

Offering an active campus experience for both resident and commuter students, William Paterson University hosts 24 fraternities and sororities and more than 70 clubs and organizations, as well as a variety of[vague] intramural and recreational activities, peer education, and leadership programs. In addition, the University offers club sports in ice hockey, equestrian, rugby, and bowling.

The University has been nationally recognized[by whom?] for its alcohol prevention program, which requires freshmen and transfer students to take alcohol.edu, an online alcohol prevention course to educate students about the consequences of alcohol abuse. In addition, student workers serve as peer health advocates and help to spread the message to their peers about the need to take a responsible approach to alcohol.


The University has 13 intercollegiate sports teams in the NCAA Division III, six for men and seven for women, including successful[neutrality is disputed] NCAA teams in men’s baseball and women’s softball. The William Paterson University Pioneers compete in Division III of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), as well as in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) and the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC). Both men and women have teams in basketball, soccer, and swimming. In addition, the men field baseball and football teams (the baseball team won national championships in 1992 and 1996), as well as a golf team. Women compete in field hockey, softball, tennis, and volleyball. All teams are named the Pioneers.

Cultural events[edit]

Cultural events take place on campus throughout the year, including theater productions, gallery exhibits, and concerts presenting jazz, classical, and contemporary music. The University’s Jazz Room Series, launched in 1978, hosts both William Paterson's student ensembles and visiting professional jazz musicians. The series has won grants[quantify] from the National Endowment for the Arts and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

The University also sponsors the Distinguished Lecturer Series (DLS), which brings to campus discussions by speakers from the worlds of politics, government, the arts, literature, science, and business. Over the past 30 years, the series has presented such speakers as New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox general managers Brian Cashman and Theo Epstein, musical theatre composer Stephen Sondheim, New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, film directors Oliver Stone and Spike Lee, performer Gregory Hines, writers Alice Walker and Joyce Carol Oates, and, most recently, entertainers Penn and Teller. As part of the 2009-10 DLS season, William Paterson University hosted the New Jersey Gubernatorial Debate, which featured candidates Chris Christie, Jon Corzine, and Chris Daggett.

Honors and awards[edit]

William Paterson University's campus radio station, WP 88.7 FM, was named the Best College/University Station (with more than 10,000 enrollment) in the 2013 Intercollegiate Broadcasting System (IBS) awards. In addition, the radio station won first place for Best Specialty Show, was a finalist in two other categories, and Rob Quicke, assistant professor of communication and general manager of the station, won the Outstanding Service Award. March 2, 2013

University and College Awards[2]

William Paterson University received the 2013 Faith in Paterson Award at their 104th Annual Gala on January 26, 2013.

William Paterson University's campus radio station, WPSC 88.7 FM, was named the Best College/University Station (with more than 10,000 enrollment) in the 2012 Intercollegiate Broadcasting System (IBS) awards. In addition, the station won eight more awards including first place in the categories of Best Talk Program and Best News Interview. March 3, 2012 WPSC 88.7 FM was also among the Top 25 Nationwide for the MTVu Woodie for College Radio Station of the Year 2011, and took the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System's (IBS) Golden Microphone Award for Programming Excellence, and Bronze Microphone for programming operations.

The North Jersey Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention presented an award to William Paterson University on October 16, 2011 in recognition of efforts by students and staff members to raise money and awareness for suicide prevention.

University's Financial Planning Program in the Cotsakos College of Business is named one of top ten programs in U.S. by Financial Planning Magazine, November 1, 2011.

William Paterson University has been honored as a “Military Friendly School” by militaryfriendlyschools.com and is included in their 2011, 2012 and 2013 Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

William Paterson University’s College of Education received the Best Practice Award in Support of Global Diversity for 2011 from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE). The award honors the integration of diversity awareness into educator preparation and was presented to representatives of the program at AACTE’s 63rd Annual Meeting and Exhibits in San Diego.

William Paterson University solar panel facility ranks among the top ten largest installations at higher education institutions in the United States, according to a report released by the Association for Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) in October 2011.

William Paterson University's Office of Marketing and Public Relations, through its agency, Lipman Hearne, Inc, received a Silver Award for the University's Internet/World Wide Website and Admissions Re-Skin at the 26th Annual Educational Marketing Advertising Awards in April, 2011.

William Paterson University received the Environmental Stewardship Award from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection in recognition of voluntary, proactive, innovative actions that go beyond compliance to improve the environment and ensure a sustainable future, September 2008.

William Paterson University received the Energy and Climate Action Award from New Jersey Higher Education Partnership for Sustainability (NJHEPS) in recognition of meritorious performance in energy and emissions reduction, 2005.

Notable alumni[edit]


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  12. ^ "William Paterson University to hold commencement on May 18" (Press release). William Paterson University. 2004-04-15. Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  13. ^ "Tom Fitzgerald". 2008-06-14. Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  14. ^ "Ferit Odman". Retrieved 2014-04-04. 
  15. ^ Zeman, Mary Beth. "Grammy Award-Winning Alumnus Is Producer Behind Pop Phenomenon Lady Gaga." WP, The Magazine of William Paterson University Spring 2010: 23-24.
  16. ^ "'Jersey Shore': Meet Sammi Sweetheart, college athlete". Retrieved 2013-08-04. 
  17. ^ "Jenkins Named to d3hoops.com All-Decade First Team". William Paterson Sports Information. 2009-01-11. Retrieved 2010-05-12. 
  18. ^ "Gold Medal Martial Arts". Retrieved 2008-12-18. [dead link]
  19. ^ "Law & Order Blog - About the Author". Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  20. ^ Bill Slossar. [1], Twin-Boro News, April 28, 2011. Accessed March 3, 2014.
  21. ^ "Dick Vitale bio". Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  22. ^ "Clinton Wheeler Past Stats, Playoff Stats, Statistics, History, and Awards". Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
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External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°56′49″N 74°11′53″W / 40.947°N 74.198°W / 40.947; -74.198