When the Ferris State University Jazz Band members view their director, they see someone they are inspired by and a mentor they can seek out.
Ferris music professor Matthew Moresi is a man with many hats. Moresi directs the jazz band, teaches three classes, as well as being a husband and professional musician. Students still somehow manage to feel connected to Moresi on a personal level.
“He treats all of his students as equals,” said Ferris pharmacy junior Ben Shrivers. “He doesn’t pick favorites and he’s just a really down-to-earth guy.”
Having a connection with his students is very important to Moresi. You can find him around Big Rapids in his free time, whether it be at the Gypsy Nickel Lounge, hanging out with his Jazz Band students, or at a post-concert traditional Buffalo Wild Wings dinner with his students.
While most professors stress office hours and coming to them when a student has a problem, Moresi goes above and beyond for his students.
“I actually asked him for one of my reference letters to get into graduate school,” said Ferris second-year pharmacy student Riley Flagler. “I have a lot of confidence in him as a person.”
His students also find Moresi musically inspiring.
“I don’t remember when I didn’t do music,” Moresi said. “My dad started me on piano when I was five and trombone when I was 10.”
Growing up in Oregon, Moresi watched his father wake up at 6 a.m. and come home at 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Although he liked the idea of teaching, having these job constraints was unappealing to Moresi. He liked the idea of having a college schedule that varied in time and people.
Moresi graduated from the University of Oregon with a bachelor’s degree in performing arts and pursued his teaching passion at Ferris State University.
In his free-time, Moresi enjoys brewing his own beer and impersonating his dog Keith on Facebook.
Although his main hat is teaching, you can find Moresi most Saturday nights performing with his band at Cranker’s Brewery.