University of Rochester

Currents--University of Rochester newspaper

Rossi named Eastman's academic dean


Jamal Rossi '87E (DMA), professor and dean of the School of Music at the University of South Carolina (USC), has been named senior associate dean for academic affairs at the Eastman School, effective July 1. Rossi succeeds Music Education Professor Donna Fox, who has acted as interim dean of academic affairs during the year-long search.

With experience both in academic administration and performing, Rossi will work closely with the school's faculty and administration in areas such as curriculum, academic policy, student advisement, and admissions.

"Jamal Rossi's appointment as academic dean and professor of woodwinds will be a marvelous enhancement to the school's mission of artistry, scholarship, and leadership," says Eastman Dean James Undercofler. "In leading this great school, I am particularly pleased to be joined by a colleague with such remarkable achievements in leadership, management, and musicianship."

As dean of USC's School of Music since 2000, Rossi acts as chief academic officer, overseeing 500 music majors and more than 50 faculty and staff. During his tenure at South Carolina, Rossi has helped establish the Southern Exposure New Music Series, the Southeastern Piano Festival, and the Center for Southern African American Music, where the music of African-Americans in the southern United States is collected, preserved, and curated.

Rossi previously held positions as associate dean and assistant dean at the School of Music at Ithaca College. He also chaired the department of music and theater at Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota, from 1986 to 1989.

As a performing musician, the Eastman School alumnus has been featured as a saxophonist on numerous solo and chamber recordings, including as the alto saxophonist and member of the Empire and Carolina Saxophone Quartets. Rossi's publications include transcriptions for saxophone as well as professional articles, papers, and reviews. He has received commissioned works by such composers as Augusta Read Thomas, Dana Wilson, and David Kechley. He also has taught private saxophone and woodwind classes, jazz improvisation and arranging, and directed saxophone and woodwind chamber and jazz ensembles.

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