Office of the President

October 10, 2022

Dear William Paterson Faculty and Staff,

Today is Indigenous Peoples Day on campus. In recognition of the University’s proclamation of the day and its new land acknowledgement, there will be a special ceremony at 12 noon on Shea Plaza, featuring a performance by the Thunderbird American Indian Dancers, speakers from the University community, and light refreshments.

I recently accepted the resignation of Chief Financial Officer Tim Lever, effective November 4. He has accepted a position within the State University of New York system. We are looking into brining on an interim CFO through The Registry or other networks, who would join William Paterson in the new year. Between November 4 and January 1, former Vice President for Administration and Finance Steve Bolyai has graciously agreed to come out of retirement to fill the role until we name an interim placement.

Thank you to everyone who came out to last week’s Enrollment and Budget Forum. As those in attendance heard, the prevailing themes remain our need to grow enrollment in strategic areas and dramatically increase retention. We are having success in many areas, but we need to do more and do it more quickly. I am confident that our collective efforts, channeled through both our new Strategic Plan and our new Branding & Identity strategy, will show results. If you weren’t able to attend or want to look more closely at the slide presentation, click here (WP login required).

As you know, our Child Development Center successfully opened earlier this year at 1800 Valley Road. I am pleased to announce that William Paterson has received a $2.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education Child Care Access Means Parents in School Program (CCAMPIS), which will help give WP students affordable access to this wonderful new resource. The grant will provide subsidized childcare costs for low-income student parents of children ages 2 1/2 through 8. The center is expected to operate at full capacity with approximately 70 children, during working hours, and another 30 children during the morning/evening wrap-around hours, for a daily capacity of 100 children. This will provide both a high-quality early childhood education program and an affordable option for many of our students. Enrollment will be on a sliding fee basis with CCAMPIS eligible parents paying just 25% of the cost.

This week’s WPWe are Proud – Earlier this month, fifty Honors College students visited the American Museum of Natural History and the Metropolitan Museum of Art with the assignment to “decolonize” the museums. Under the direction of faculty members Dr. Tj Gundling, Dr. Molly O’Donnell, and Dr. Rosa Soto, the students explored exhibits to determine how artifacts are displayed, and ask questions such as: what is labeled as art and what is labeled as craft, and how are BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) artists represented? These are important and timely questions for our students to be asking, especially as William Paterson is in the midst of its own decolonization initiative as part of our new Strategic Plan. 

Have a great week.


Richard J. Helldobler, Ph.D.
Office of the President | 973.720.2222 |