Calareso’s appointment on July 1 will make him the first permanent lay president of the Clinton Hill school. While that will be a challenge, the Massachusetts native plans to bring years of experience to the job, previously serving as the president of Ohio Dominican University and Briar Cliff University in Iowa.
“I have had that experience a few times,” Calareso said. “You have to be who you are and I am what I am. I understand the mission of the sisters and look forward to representing that model.”
With plans of canvasing the school in the coming months, Calareso says he expects to continue teaching and hold a faculty position as a professor.
In a changing and highly competitive collegiate field in a region that is home to six colleges specialized in a variety of fields, the new president said he hopes to find new ways of expanding existing programs at the school.
“There are certainly opportunities in the areas of business education, in the global economy, and emerging tech programs as opposed to general business degrees,” he said of the current academic atmosphere. “That is why I want to look into partnerships with the corporate community.”
He added that he also intends to provide online programming in an effort to reach out to a wider range of students.
“Online is the fastest growing segment of education across the country,” Calareso said. “Students are not all coming from nuclear families anymore, they’re working and they have other obligations, so online education could be important.”
While Calereso and his wife Rose have some experience with the borough, visiting their son in Brooklyn several years ago while he lived in Carroll Gardens during his time in law school, he said there is just one reservation in preparing for the move from Boston to New York.
“I should be truthful, but one thing I am most concerned about is that I am a diehard Boston Red Sox fan,” he said. “That was one issue that got me the least positive reaction with the students so far.”