The Joseph and Elda Coccia Institute is a component of Montclair State University's College of Humanities and Social Sciences. It is named in honor of
Cav. Joseph Coccia, Jr. and his wife Elda.
In founding the Coccia Institute, Mr. and Mrs. Coccia and Montclair State University share the vision for an entity with the flexibility to respond to new
opportunities as well as network and collaborate with existing organizations in areas of shared interest. The Institute's Director, Dr. Mary Ann Re, along
with the Coccia's and the University, welcomes promising new concepts that support the Institute's mission. If you would like more information, please
call the Institute at 973.655.4050 or email us at email@example.com.
The Coccia Institute for the Italian Experience in America at Montclair State University actively advances the growing interest in Italian and Italian
American fields of study, both among scholars and the public at large. The mission of the Institute includes both academic components and public
outreach, with a specific focus on the historical and contemporary interplay of Italian culture and society with American culture and society.
The Institute works collaboratively with other regional and national organizations in the common cause of promoting an understanding of the important
links between the peoples and cultures of Italy and America.
The Coccia Institute will be recognized as the premiere entity supporting the growth of "emerging adults" as they learn to appreciate and contribute to
the Italian American culture. We will also be known as a national and international Center of Excellence and a "go to" resource for current information
and programming on a host of Italian and Italian American issues and interests.
The Institute will become a self-supporting entity that stimulates interest in and encourages preservation of Italian and Italian American culture and
heritage. We aim to measure our progress and achieve this vision within five years. We will focus on three strategic areas as we work towards
completing the following major goals:
Alone or in partnership with other universities, organizations and individuals, the Coccia Institute for the Italian Experience in America organizes and
conducts educational programs for people of all ages and interest levels. Among these educational initiatives are lectures, conferences, seminars and
symposia for groups ranging from school age children to the general public and scholarly audiences.
In pursuit of its educational mission, the Coccia Institute sponsors two annual signature programs of note:
a) In the fall, a regional professional development conference for teachers of Italian at all levels, entitled “Teaching Italian Symposium-Workshops,”
developed in conjunction with Montclair State’s Department of Spanish and Italian, featuring distinguished foreign language specialists from across the
b) In the spring, “Italian Language and Culture Day,” a unique competition among students of Italian—in Italian--from middle schools and high
schools across New Jersey, in collaboration with the Italian Teachers Association of New Jersey (ITANJ)—an opportunity for students to showcase their
learning and creativity via performances of original skits, musical numbers and dance routines developed around a common theme.
The work of the Coccia Institute extends beyond the Montclair State University campus. The Institute, for example, stays in touch with a national
network of scholars in the field of Italian and Italian American Studies and serves as a conduit for sharing information and resources. The Institute
maintains a list of speakers who can address organizations and school groups. Chosen for their expertise on topics related to Italian and Italian
American culture, they come from the worlds of academia, business, arts, sciences, and beyond. Building on the foundation of Montclair State's
successful partnerships with New Jersey school districts, the Coccia Institute reaches out to teachers to help them enrich their own classroom and
school-based activities. Annual contests and competitions are designed to draw student entries from throughout New Jersey and beyond. The institute
also welcomes opportunities to act as a resource for Italian American organizations and to explore mutually beneficial partnerships and collaborations.
Significant aspects of Italian and Italian American culture and experience continue to await exploration and interpretation. There are many ways in
which the Coccia Institute may lend assistance to scholars who are adding to that body of knowledge. Support may be extended, for example, through
research grants or by providing space for art exhibits, artifact displays and new collections.
The Coccia Institute for the Italian Experience in America offers cultural programming for the general public that educates as it entertains. Film
festivals, art shows, musical and theatrical performances feature the work of Italian and Italian American artists and are designed to expose the larger
community to Italian and Italian American culture.
Board of Advisors
Cav. Mary Ann Re, PhD
President, Coccia Foundation
Joseph J. Agresti
Linda Gould Levine, PhD
Chair, Department of Spanish and Italian
Michael Mariniello, Jr.
Marietta Morrissey, PhD
Dean, College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Cav. Marisa S. Trubiano, PhD
Associate Professor of Italian, Department of Spanish and Italian
For Scholarships, Internships and Awards, kindly visit the Joseph and Elda Coccia Institute at Montclair State University website at: