I spent a majority of my college life hanging at the radio station, WMCX. I had the on-air shift, I was a member of the Executive Board at various positions.The whole time I was there, we had a consistent group of faculty advisors, who were all fantastic in various roles. Professor Chris Cavallaro was an engineering whiz, the sort of guy who had the kind of knowledge that just felt innate, like he could look at a problem and immediately know what the problem was and how he could fix it, while dumb college freshman me just said "uh, something isn't right."

I worked with Professor Cavallaro all four years as part of the radio station, but only had him for one official class - Radio Production. He was almost a character from a college movie, the gruff professor who you learn was only being stern to push you to do your best. He definitely kicked my butt a few times for being lazy and doing just enough to get by, and he did it in just the right way that, rather than ignore him, I was actually motivated to do better.

Producer Steve and I attended Monmouth at the same time, with him graduating one year before me. Obviously we both worked at the radio station, and we both have great memories of Professor Cavallaro. Producer Steve shared this:

Devastated to learn of the passing of a one of my college professors, but more importantly a true mentor, Chris Cavallaro.
Chris' no-nonsense, no-BS approach to teaching was exactly what this 19-year-old kid needed back in the early 2000s. Chris taught me accountability. He taught me that “good enough” was not indeed good enough. He challenged me more than any other teacher I’ve ever had. Chris was pretty much the reason I became a radio major, which has completely defined the last 15+ years of my life.
I remember hearing, “Do it again” and “I’m not accepting this until you do it right” on many occasions in his classes. I remember my first ever Intro to Radio class when Chris walked in, looked at the class and said, “If you’re getting into radio because you think you’re going to make money like Howard Stern, get out.” He was 100% honest all of the time, and that could be really brutal. I needed that.
But I also remember handing in assignments that he was happy with. He’d pull you aside and tell you that he was proud of what you did. He’d tell the class how great you did. As much as he’d knock you down a peg sometimes, you also never had a bigger cheerleader. I’m eternally grateful for the lessons I learned from him.
The world lost a truly great educator, mentor and friend with Chris’ passing. If someone has had as great an impact on your life like Chris had on mine, TELL THEM before it’s too late. I wish I had. My deepest condolences to Chris' family, friends and other former students. Rest in peace, Chris.

Christopher J. Cavallaro passed away on January 13th. RIP Cav.


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