Berkeley College celebrated its 90-year history in New Jersey with a tree-planting ceremony at the Paramus, NJ, Library Bandshell on Tuesday, September 28, 2021. Joseph A. Lagana, New Jersey Senator, Lisa Swain, New Jersey Assemblywoman, and Richard LaBarbiera, Mayor of Paramus, were among the dignitaries to pay tribute to the College at the event.

“You can tell a lot about an institution with the way it interacts with its community. I can’t say enough (good) about the way Berkeley interacts with Paramus,” said Lagana.

“Besides our continued focus on student success where the student always comes first, Berkeley College maintains its dedication to being a part of the local community and giving back,” said Kevin L. Luing, Chairman, Berkeley College Board of Trustees.

LaBarbiera added, “Berkeley gives, and they give big and they give back to Paramus.”

The ceremony included recognition of a commemorative cherry tree planted near the library. Officials noted the symbolic importance of the tree in relation to Berkeley College’s long history in Bergen County.

“A tree is symbolic,” said Michael J. Smith, President of Berkeley College. “The trees that we plant today are going to be here into the future. When Berkeley celebrates its 180th anniversary, with our children’s children’s children, the story of Berkeley will continue to be told,” Smith added.

“Berkeley College has and continues to plant itself in dedication to our students,” said LaTysha Gaines, 90th Anniversary Event Co-Chair and Campus Operating Officer of Berkeley College’s Woodland Park and Paramus locations. “Berkeley College has planted many strong roots so our students can bear great fruits,” she added.

Berkeley College conducted its first classes as The Berkeley School on September 28, 1931, in East Orange, NJ, to provide pathways and opportunities for women during the Great Depression. The school evolved from a premier secretarial school to a widely recognized degree-granting institution offering Associate, Bachelor and Master level degrees, as well as Certificate and Continuing Education programs in a range of career fields. Berkeley has maintained a presence in Bergen County since 1969, with its current location at 64 E. Midland Avenue in Paramus opening in 2003. 

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy issued a proclamation declaring September 28, 2021, as “Berkeley College 90th Anniversary Day.” Paramus also presented the College with a proclamation at the ceremony to honor the legacy and history of Berkeley in the region.

“To think about how many people you have educated, that is something that is so important in our society,” said Swain. “Ninety years is certainly a momentous milestone.”

Additional festivities were held on September 28 in communities where Berkeley College campuses are located, including Woodland Park and Woodbridge; and on September 29 a tree-planting ceremony was held in Newark.

About Berkeley College
Berkeley College, founded in 1931, is a career-focused institution accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education that offers students Master’s, Bachelor’s, and Associate’s degree and Certificate programs in more than 20 career fields. The College also offers continuing education programs to enhance career credentials.

Berkeley College has campuses in Newark, Paramus, Woodbridge, and Woodland Park, NJ, and in Midtown Manhattan, NY, and with more than 4,900 students enrolled. In addition, Berkeley College Online? serves a global population. U.S. News & World Report has named Berkeley College among the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Programs and among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans, for eight consecutive years. U.S. News & World Report named Berkeley College (NJ) one of the Best Regional Colleges in the North in its 2022 edition of the Best Colleges Survey. In 2021 Berkeley College (NJ) was also recognized for the first time as a Top Performer on Social Mobility among colleges in the region. The website address is

The mission of Berkeley College is to empower students to achieve lifelong success in dynamic careers. 

Photo Caption: Berkeley College celebrated its 90th anniversary with a cherry tree-planting ceremony held at the Paramus, NJ, Library Bandshell on Tuesday, September 28, 2021. Pictured left to right: Pat Verile, Paramus Councilmember, and High School and Community Relations Associate, Berkeley College; Lisa Swain, New Jersey Assemblywoman; Bryan Santiago, 90th Anniversary Event Co-Chair, Chair and Security Analyst and Administrator, Information Systems, Berkeley College; Michael J. Smith, President, Berkeley College; Kevin L. Luing, Chairman, Berkeley College Board of Trustees; Richard LaBarbiera, Mayor of Paramus; Joseph A. Lagana, New Jersey Senator; Busie Matsiko-Andan, Board of Trustees and Alumnus, Berkeley College; LaTysha Gaines, 90th Anniversary Event Co-Chair and Campus Operating Officer, Woodland Park and Paramus, Berkeley College; Teri Duda, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, Berkeley College; and Len LoPinto, Director, Paramus Library.

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