Meet the Dean

John Masserini

John Masserini, DMA is the Dean of the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences

Dr. John Masserini is Dean of the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and holds the rank of Professor in the Department of Music. He joined Metropolitan State University of Denver in July 2021 from Northern Arizona University where he spent 13 years a Professor of Music and in several senior-level administrative positions.

Read Dr. Masserini's Bio

Dr. Masserini is an academic leader dedicated to providing higher education opportunities to anyone that seeks them, as higher education is the greatest proven catalyst for a life of substance, bringing with it social, economic, and career mobility. His work focuses on the symbiotic nature of academic and organizational efforts that lead to student success. He currently serves as the Dean of the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences at Metropolitan State University of Denver (MSU Denver).

Dr. Masserini’s vision, leadership efforts, and daily work involve enabling academic units to demonstrate the interdisciplinary reality of the human experience to our students, through the lens of the humanities, arts, and sciences; cultivating equity-minded and inclusive practices throughout the college; investing in and supporting holistic student success structures at the university; and building strong connections between educational institutions and the communities for which they live and serve. With a specific focus on those that are historically minoritized and underserved, he looks to dismantle long-standing barriers in higher education by providing full access and support with academic excellence, graduating engaged and thoughtful citizens who pursue meaningful careers and full, productive lives.

Prior to joining MSU Denver, Masserini was Professor of Music and served in various administrative roles at Northern Arizona University from 2008-21. Among them include: Interim Dean for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (2020-21), Vice Provost for Academic Affairs (2018-20), Associate Dean of the Graduate College (2014-18) and Associate Director of the School of Music (2011-14). From 2001-08 he served on the faculty in the Department of Music at Idaho State University.

As an active performing clarinetist, Masserini appeared at several international and national venues as a recitalist, concerto soloist, collaborative chamber musician, avant-garde performing artist, and theater musician for national Broadway tours. Notable past international invitations include the International Clarinet Association Conferences (ClarinetFest®) in 2003 (Salt Lake City, Utah), 2005 (Tokyo, Japan), 2006 (Atlanta, Georgia), 2009 (Porto, Portugal), 2012 (Lincoln, Nebraska), 2013 (Assisi, Italy), and 2015 (Madrid, Spain). His clarinet/saxophone duo Velocity2 [Velocity Squared] released the CD Flux under the Centaur Records label in 2014.

In addition to his more traditional work in the field, Masserini has completed several grant-funded performance projects with longtime collaborator Melanie Kloetzel, Professor of Dance at the University of Calgary. Their work combines music, dance/movement, and various forms of media. International and national invitations to showcase these interdisciplinary performance art works include the Congress on Research in Dance (CORD) 2011 Annual Conference: “Moving Music / Sounding Dance” (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania); Collision 2006: A Symposium on Interarts and Interdisciplinary Practices (Vancouver, British Columbia); and a main-stage appearance at the 2006 On the Boards – Northwest New Works Festival (Seattle, Washington).

Masserini holds the Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA) and Master of Music (MM) degrees in Music Performance (clarinet) from Michigan State University and a Bachelor of Music (BM) degree in Music Performance (clarinet) from the University of New Mexico.

Vision, Mission, Principles

Dean Masserini launched the new vision, mission and guiding principles in 2022.

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Metropolitan State University of Denver is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (30 North LaSalle St., Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60602-2504, 1-800-621-7440).

College of Letters, Arts and Sciences

We are CLAS

Campus Location:

Central Classroom 315

Mailing Address:

Campus Box 37
P. O. Box 173362
Denver, CO 80217-3362




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