May 18, 2017

Motivational Speaker Eric LeGrand to Deliver Remarks

Parsippany, N.J. May 18, 2017 – Centenary University’s School of Professional Studies (SPS), which has served the educational needs of adult students since 1999, will be holding a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 5 p.m. Wednesday, June 14, 2017 at its new location in Parsippany located at the Mack-Cali Professional Building at 7 Campus Drive. SPS’s new state-of-the-art facility helps position Centenary as a leader in adult education. The SPS programs provide an entrepreneurial approach to the educational experience by offering professional studies to those in the workforce allowing students to select the modality most conducive to their busy lifestyle.

“It was a strategic decision almost 20 years ago to develop SPS in Parsippany to build the workforce capacity in the region,” says Dr. Deidre Letson-Christofalo, Vice President for Adult, Corporate and Online Education at Centenary University. “This new location will further enrich the learning experience as it was designed to accommodate the needs for the adult learner.”

Remarks will be made by Centenary University President Dr. David P. Haney and Eric LeGrand, motivational speaker and former Rutgers football player. LeGrand will discuss his own journey overcoming obstacles and the importance of following one’s dreams. He will further urge attendees how they can move forward in their lives by moving past personal challenges.

Eric LeGrand is a source of inspiration, hope and perseverance for so many. A standout high school football player from New Jersey, LeGrand went on to play for Rutgers University. On October 16, 2010, in his junior year, LeGrand suffered a severe spinal injury during a game. As a result, he underwent nine hours of emergency surgery to become stabilized. Doctors gave him a zero to 5 percent chance of regaining neurologic function. In January 2011, he regained movement in his shoulders and sensation throughout his body.

On October 29, 2011, LeGrand, in his motorized wheelchair, led the Scarlet Knights onto the field at Rutgers stadium for their game against West Virginia. This moment was chosen by readers of Sports Illustrated as ‘The Best Moment of 2011.’ In fall of 2012, LeGrand released his book, titled BELIEVE: My Faith and the Tackle that Changed My Life, published by HarperCollins. Humbled by the outpouring of support from around the nation, LeGrand decided to form a charity. Team LeGrand of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation was established in 2013. Proceeds go toward research to find a cure for paralysis and helping improve the quality of life for people with spinal cord injuries.

“I am pleased to talk about my personal and educational journey and how my priorities shifted to motivating others to realize their potential after my injury,” says LeGrand. “I hope many people from the community will take part in this celebration.”

This new facility offers more classroom and conference space than before, plus it houses a Social Media Center of Expertise. This Center, which is called #theVIBE, will launch a Social Media Marketing certificate program and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration: Social Media Marketing for adult professionals.

#theVIBE was first launched at Centenary University in Hackettstown in September 2015 as a location where students can gain social media expertise and where businesses can leverage the knowledge of social media experts. The launch of this program was so successful that they have built a second Social Media Center at Centenary University’s School of Professional Studies (SPS) in Parsippany.

Students studying Social Media Marketing will be immersed in social media by learning in a modern collaborative environment at #theVIBE, with its impressive touchscreen videowall streaming the latest social media data. This is a rapidly changing field and the program keeps students on the pulse of social media through interactive demos, customized video homework by social media experts, and hands-on use of industry social media listening software. In addition to this certificate, there are new graduate level certificates that are being offered at SPS in Leadership and Health Administration.

Students in the SPS program can take classes in a variety of formats: one-night-per-week, completely online or through a blended approach, which combines online and in class methods. The curriculum combines theory and practical experience, allowing students to apply knowledge acquired immediately. Having conferred thousands of A.A., B.S.B.A. and M.B.A. degrees, the School of Professional Studies serves as an inclusive and collaborative learning community dedicated to preparing adult students to progress further in society and to contribute directly to the state’s economic engine.

Founded in 1867 by the Newark Conference of the United Methodist Church, Centenary University’s academic program integrates a solid liberal arts foundation with a strong career orientation. This mix is designed to provide an educational experience that prepares students to succeed in the increasingly global and interdependent world.

Centenary University’s main campus is located in Hackettstown, N.J., with its equestrian facility in Washington Township (Morris County). The Centenary School of Professional Studies (SPS) offers degree programs in two locations: Parsippany and Edison, as well as corporate sites throughout New Jersey.