Year in Review 2014


Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Dario A. Cortes, Berkeley College President This special edition of Berkeley College Newsline – Year in Review highlights some of the most memorable moments from the past year at Berkeley College. Faculty and staff were asked to share their “Best of Berkeley” moments and the responses were heartfelt. Below you will find not only the “Top 10” list, but a link to a longer “Best of Berkeley” section, which includes many of the submissions and comments provided by faculty and staff for this year-end issue.

Student success has been at the heart of Berkeley College for more than 80 years, and this was never more evident than in 2014. Here are some examples of this success:

In April, we celebrated the largest graduating class in Berkeley College history, with more than 2,300 students receiving degrees and certificates.

Across the system, the College received accolades, from being ranked among the Best Colleges in the Online Bachelor Degree category by U.S. News & World Report to being named Best of the Best by U.S. Veterans Magazine.

Our faculty traveled on a medical mission to Latin America to care for children in need, and we expanded our global impact in other ways as well. In addition to serving more than 900 international students, the College hosted visitors from Mexico and China through various academic initiatives.

In September, the College opened Renaissance Hall, an impressive student services hub in Woodland Park. The month of September also marked the launch of the first Honors Scholars Symposium at Berkeley and the start of the College’s first massive open online course (MOOC), which provided an introductory overview for anyone considering a career in healthcare.

As we reflect on the accomplishments of 2014 for Berkeley College, we look forward with anticipation to more great achievements in 2015.

Wishing you a happy and healthy New Year.


Dario A. Cortes, Berkeley College President, signature

Dario A. Cortes, PhD
President of Berkeley College



Best of Berkeley 2014

There were many memorable moments at Berkeley College in 2014. Here are the Top Moments, as selected by the Berkeley College Newsline editorial board and ranked by Berkeley administration.

1. Largest graduating class in Berkeley College history
2. Renaissance Hall opening
3. Return of All Associates Day
4. First Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)
5. First Honors Scholars Symposium
6. Launch of 2015-2020 Strategic Plan
7. Best Colleges ranking, Online Bachelor’s Degree category, U.S. News & World Report
8. Healing the Children medical mission to the Dominican Republic
9. First time all three basketball teams compete in the USCAA National Tournament
10. President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll

But wait, there’s more! We received great feedback by email and via Twitter to @BerkeleyCollege #BestofBerkeley2014. Click here to see faculty and staff submissions for the Best of Berkeley.



New Jersey Special Publication

New Jersey: Cultivating 350 Years of Innovation and Success

Berkeley College was recently featured in “New Jersey: Cultivating 350 Years of Innovation and Success,” a special publication produced by the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce to honor the state’s 350th anniversary. 




Berkeley College Unveils Strategic Plan 2015-2020

During All Associates Day in October, Berkeley College announced its 2015-2020 Strategic Plan: Building on a Legacy of Excellence and Achievement. Dario A. Cortes, PhD, President of Berkeley College, said the College has fulfilled many of its goals over the last five years, setting a strong foundation for future success.

Berkeley College Strategic Plan 2015-2020

The 2015-2020 Strategic Plan focuses on the following institutional goals:

• Retention and Graduation
• Employment Outcomes
• Accessibility and Affordability
• Innovation and Competitiveness
• Identity and Reputation 





College Opens Renaissance Hall in Woodland Park

In September, Berkeley College celebrated the opening of Renaissance Hall with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The newly constructed 35,000-square-foot structure was built with private funds at a cost of $9 million. Its focal point is a modern atrium, comprising three stories of glass facing east. The building is fully wireless for technology and includes six classrooms; the Academic Support Center; the Walter A. Brower Library; the Admissions Welcome Center; the Office of Military and Veterans Affairs; dining facilities; the campus bookstore; a fitness room; meeting and conference rooms; a community room; exterior and interior student and community gathering spaces; and Student Development and Campus Life offices.

Read more: View coverage of Renaissance Hall on and in New Jersey Business Magazine. To see photos from the event, click here.

Berkeley College Renaissance Hall

Photo Caption: Berkeley College leadership and students, as well as local and state legislators, celebrate the opening of Renaissance Hall in Woodland Park in September.


Berkeley Celebrates Largest Graduating Class

Berkeley College Commencement speaker Camelia Valdes

At a Commencement ceremony in April, Berkeley College celebrated the largest graduating class in its history, with more than 2,300 students receiving Bachelor’s and Associate’s degrees and certificates. The Class of 2014 included 110 military and veteran students and 550 online students. Camelia M. Valdes, Passaic County Prosecutor (pictured), delivered the Commencement Address and was presented with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree. 



Seminar Goes Behind the Scenes at MetLife Stadium

In May, Berkeley College sponsored “Protecting Critical Infrastructure – Monday Morning Quarterback: Lessons from the Big Game.” The symposium welcomed 150 law enforcement officials, business and security professionals, college professors, administrators and students to MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ. Presenters provided an overview of what it takes to protect the public at events such as the Super Bowl, as well as the importance of public-private partnerships.   

Military and Veterans Highlights

This year, Berkeley College was recognized many times for supporting veterans in their academic pursuits. Some of these accolades include:

Berkeley College named Best for Vets by Military Times


• Best Online Programs for Veterans – U.S. News & World Report
• Best of the Best – U.S. Veterans Magazine
• Best for Vets: Colleges 2014,
Four-Year Schools – Military Times
• Military-Friendly School – Military Advanced Education
• Military-Friendly School – Victory Media, publisher of G.I. Jobs, Military Spouse and Vetrepreneur



In January, the Office of Military and Veterans Affairs celebrated the opening of a Veterans Resource Center in Dover. This is the College’s sixth Veterans Resource Center, a space students use to study, socialize with other veterans, participate in Student Veterans Club activities and access tutoring assistance.

Opening of Berkeley College Veterans Resource Center in Dover

Photo Caption: Dario A. Cortes, PhD, President of Berkeley College (fifth from left), cuts the ribbon to open a Veterans Resource Center in Dover in January.


Carlos Sanchez, Berkeley College Professor, presents the Patriot Award to Joseph Charleman, Berkeley College Chair In June, Berkeley College in Clifton received the Patriot Award from the Office of the Secretary of Defense Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve. The award cites the College’s support when professors are called to military duty. (Pictured L to R) Carlos Sanchez, U.S. Navy Reserve 1st Class Hospital Corpsman and Professor, Surgical Technology and Surgical Processing Technician programs, presents Joseph Charleman, Chair, Surgical Technology and Surgical Processing Technician programs, with the award.



Berkeley College Online® Highlights

Berkeley College Onlikne named in Best Colleges in Online Bachelor degree

In 2014, Berkeley College was named one of the Best Colleges in the Online Bachelor Degree category by U.S. News & World Report. Methodology used to rank the institutions in this category included student engagement, faculty credentials and training, peer reputation, and student services and technology.




In September, Berkeley College kicked off its first massive open online course (MOOC), titled Allied Healthcare Careers: Beyond the Mask. The noncredit course offered an introductory overview for anyone considering a career in the healthcare industry.
Mary Jane Clerkin, Berkeley College Professor, is inducted into USDLA Hall of Fame


In May, Mary Jane Clerkin, DA, Professor, English, School of Liberal Arts, was inducted into the United States Distance Learning Association Hall of Fame. Dr. Clerkin was recognized for her contributions to the field of distance learning through leadership, technology, research and teaching.




In October, Berkeley College Online® hosted “Sparking Insight,” a virtual women’s leadership symposium that connected participants with inspirational, self-made women who shared their personal journeys to success.


Faculty Highlights

Professors and an alumna from the School of Health Studies partnered with Healing the Children® New Jersey (HTCNJ) on medical missions to Guayaquil, Ecuador, in June and La Romana, Dominican Republic, in October. HTCNJ is a nonprofit that provides access to medical care for children in need worldwide. To watch a video about the initiative in Ecuador, click here.

Joseph Charleman, Berkeley College Chair, and a young patient during a Healing the Children medical mission

Photo Caption: Joseph Charleman, CST, CSFA, CRCST, LPN, Chair, Surgical Technology and Surgical Processing Technician programs, School of Health Studies, spends time with a young patient during a medical mission to the Dominican Republic.


In April, Berkeley College was one of eight colleges and universities to participate in Brooklyn Tech Triangle U. The mission of the weeklong series of free events was to connect the technology, business, creative and academic communities in Downtown Brooklyn with the talent network that makes Brooklyn an economic development hub. Three professors and an alumnus gave presentations or participated on panels. To view photos, click here.


Berkeley College professors Rahul Bedi and Darshan Desai win first prize for Action Plan In June, Rahul Bedi, PhD, Associate Chair, Management, and Darshan Desai, PhD, Professor, Management, both Larry L. Luing School of Business (pictured left), received first prize for an Action Plan they presented at the New York Campus Compact Engagement Academy conference. The conference theme was “Higher Education at a Watershed Moment: The Importance of Engagement as an Institutional Strategy.”



In October, more than 25 Berkeley College professors gave presentations, moderated discussions, or delivered workshops during the 2nd Annual Conference of the Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking at St. John’s University. The keynote speaker was Susan Albertine, PhD, Vice President, Office of Diversity, Equity, and Student Success, Association of American Colleges and Universities. Michael Jacobs, DA, Associate Chair, English, served as Director of the Conference Committee.



Athletics Highlights

In February, the United States Collegiate Athletic Association announced that for the first time, all three Berkeley College basketball teams – Men’s Basketball and Women’s Basketball, New York, and Men’s Basketball, New Jersey – would have the opportunity to compete in the National Tournament.

New Berkeley College Athletics website


In August, the Athletics department launched its new website, The website provides visitors access to up-to-the-minute information, such as student-athlete and coach biographies, game schedules and recaps, photo galleries, video clips, statistics, interactive polls and more.




Sharod Tomlinson, Head Coach, Women’s Basketball, New York, and Michael Butler, Head Coach, Women’s Soccer, New York, were named Coach of the Year in their respective sports by the Hudson Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.


Berkeley College launched Men’s and Women’s Tennis teams in New York, which compete in the Hudson Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.


John Partin Berkeley College cross country veteran

Also in 2014, student veteran John Partin, an athlete on the New Jersey Cross Country team, received coverage in The Record and on News 12 New Jersey. Mr. Partin, who spent 22 years in the U.S. Marine Corps, is starting the next phase of his life as a freshman at Berkeley College.




External Relations Highlights

In 2014, Berkeley College hosted a number of legislators and special guests who learned about the College’s commitment to student success.

Congresswoman Virginia Foxx visits Berkeley College
In New Jersey, visitors included U.S. Congresswoman Virginia Foxx (pictured taking a selfie with a student), who represents North Carolina’s 5th District. Congresswoman Foxx visited Woodland Park in July and spoke to students about her personal challenges, the value of higher education, financial aid, tuition and healthcare.



U.S. Congressman Hakeem Jeffries visits Berkeley College Guests in New York included New York State Assemblyman Walter T. Mosley, 57th District, and U.S. Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, 8th Congressional District of New York (pictured with Dario A. Cortes, PhD, President of Berkeley College). U.S. Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, 9th Congressional District of New York, visited Brooklyn in October to discuss the future of law enforcement and cybersecurity.


Berkeley College also welcomed chambers of commerce and leaders from area colleges to discuss the climate of higher education at events such as Newark College Town. At the 6th Annual Under the Tent networking event in September, the College celebrated the Woodland Park Centennial and honored its mutually supportive relationship with the Borough.

Woodland Park Centennial celebrated at Berkeley College during Under the Tent

Photo Caption: Teri Duda, Berkeley College Senior Vice President, External Relations (third from left), celebrates the Woodland Park Centennial with the Borough Mayor and Council at the 6th Annual Under the Tent networking event in September.


International Highlights

Berkeley College served as host to a number of groups from abroad in 2014.

Security officials from China visit Berkeley College


In July, a group of public security officials from provinces in the People’s Republic of China visited White Plains to discuss public safety and policing procedures in New York.




Also in July, law students from Universidad Anáhuac Mayab in Merida, Yucatán, Mexico, attended a five-day seminar about the American legal system and other topics in Midtown Manhattan.


Faculty from North Sichuan Medical University visit Berkeley College

The School of Health Studies welcomed faculty members from North Sichuan Medical University in China for visits in September and October. The group sought to better understand medical terminology and the U.S. medical system before continuing to travel in the United States. (Pictured) Jose A. Montalvo, MD, RMA, CCMA, Professor, Medical Assistant program, School of Health Studies, gives a presentation to the delegation from China.



Also in 2014, Berkeley College was ranked seventh in international student enrollment among 40 special focus institutions by the Institute of International Education Open Doors report. Open Doors is a comprehensive information resource on international students and scholars studying or teaching at higher education institutions in the United States, and U.S. students studying abroad.


Honors Program Highlights

In September, Berkeley College held its first Honors Scholars Research Symposium in Manhattan, NY. The symposium, which featured theses by student scholars, was the culmination of a year of studies through classroom discussions, seminars and research.

Tamara Desrosiers speaks during the first Honors Scholars Research Symposium

Photo Caption: Honors Scholar Tamara Desrosiers presents her research during the first Honors Scholars Research Symposium in September.


Alumni Highlights

In October, Berkeley College hosted alumni in Woodland Park and Midtown Manhattan for an Alumni Reunion Weekend. The theme of the event, which was attended by more than 60 alumni and guests, was “Find Your Calling!” This annual event featured tours of the new Renaissance Hall in Woodland Park, a Hudson River dinner cruise, and workshops including “Define Your Personal Vision” and “Powerful and Persuasive Business Writing,” among others.


Allison Calvert, Berkeley College alumna This year, Berkeley College alumni achieved great success in a variety of careers. One standout alumna is Allison Calvert, who was named Director of Special Events at The Business Council of Westchester. Ms. Calvert has been with the Council since 2012, where she plans more than 80 events a year. She graduated from Berkeley College in 2009 with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, and the College helped her secure an internship with the American Red Cross. “The training I received at Berkeley College helped prepare me for a successful career in special events,” Ms. Calvert said. “My family and professors encouraged me to reach my full potential as a student, which led to a job that I love.”


Berkeley College receives CIANJ Impressive Good Works award

In March, Karen Carpentieri, Vice President, Human Resources (pictured far left), accepted the “Impressive Good Works” Award on behalf of Berkeley College from the Commerce and Industry Association of New Jersey. The award recognized Community Service Day, an initiative of Berkeley Cares, which throughout the year assists charities in the critical areas of food, shelter, health and student success.


In December, Berkeley College in New York was named to the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service. The President’s Honor Roll recognizes higher education institutions whose community service efforts achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities. This distinction is the highest federal recognition that colleges and universities can receive for community service, service-learning, and civic engagement.   

5th Annual Berkeley College community Service Day

In May, Berkeley College continued its service efforts on its 5th annual Community Service Day, when approximately 300 staff, faculty, students, alumni and trustees volunteered more than 1,000 hours of service at 27 community agencies in New Jersey and New York. To view photos from Community Service Day, click here. To view a video clip, click here.  






About Berkeley College

A leader in providing career-focused education since 1931, Berkeley College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and enrolls approximately 8,000 students – including more than 900 international students – in its Baccalaureate and Associate degree and Certificate programs. The College has three New York locations – Midtown Manhattan, Brooklyn and White Plains. In New Jersey there are six locations – Woodland Park, Paramus, Woodbridge, Newark, Clifton and Dover. Berkeley College Online® serves a global population. Programs are offered in more than 20 career fields in the Larry L. Luing School of Business, the School of Professional Studies, the School of Health Studies, and the School of Liberal Arts. The website address is