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School of Arts & Sciences-Newark


July 1st, 2020

Dear SASN community,

Today I begin my term as Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences.  I am deeply honored by this opportunity to serve and excited to start this journey.  I must begin with a heartfelt thank you to Dean Denis Paré whose unwavering commitment to the success of SASN and whose support and friendship have been extraordinary.

These are very difficult and uncertain times, and the challenges that lie ahead will be significant.  That is the sober reality that we face.  However, that reality will not serve as fodder for either pessimism or paralysis.  We have serious work to do.

As a pragmatic optimist I have absolutely no doubt that we will weather whatever lies ahead.  However, survival is not our end goal.  We will thrive, innovate, and seize the opportunities that this moment offers because SASN is a dynamic, nimble, and generative place.  We will thrive because we have a responsibility to each other, to the city of Newark, and to a world that needs our excellence right now.  We will use the months and years ahead as a time to reflect, be creative, and revisit and live into our core values.  SASN will survive and thrive because of you and because of us.  To borrow from and extend the words of author Toni Morrison, “we are each others’ best things.”  Our excellence as a place of knowledge production, our generosity and compassionate care for each other, and commitment to justice and positive transformation will sustain us.

The talents and commitments of this community are unmatched. As I take stock of the challenges and possibilities ahead, I cannot imagine a better team of faculty, staff and students than the one that we have here at SASN.

We have work to do. Let’s do it!



Jacquie Mattis,

Dean, School of Arts and Sciences-Newark