When NJIT revived its men's cross-country program and added a women's team for the first time ever, Adalberto M. Alonso, P.E., was the ideal candidate to coach both programs.
Alonso spent the last 19 years as the head men's coach at Stevens Institute of Technology, and was the only coach in the 11-year history of the Ducks' women's program. He was the youngest head coach at Stevens and among the youngest collegiate coaches in the nation. Stevens's men's teams won their final 53 dual meets under Alonso, and never had a losing season. His women's teams were 28-12 and won their last 18 dual meets.
Alonso was named Independent Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in 1993, 1995 and 1996, and has produced 34 all-conference runners. He was also the head men and women's track and field coach at Stevens for the last six years.
As an undergraduate at Stevens, Alonso was instrumental in making cross-country a varsity sport. He was president of the Ducks' club team his first two years, then as a junior led the inaugural varsity squad to the IAC championship.
Alonso was recognized for his athletic accomplishments as a student and coach by being inducted into the Stevens Athletics Hall of Fame in 2006.
Coach Alonso enters his fourth year at the helm of the Highlanders. In just 3 years, the cross country team had climbed to the top of the 12-member CACC conference including CACC MVP and Newcomer awards. So far, the men and women teams have combined to break 33 cross country school records, 5 CACC All Conference, 3 CACC All Academic, 1 individual and team NCAA All Academic, and culminating with our first ECAC All East recipient, Umar Saeed.
Community service has always been close to coach Alonso's heart. Athletes should be role models and therefore should be involved in community service projects. In the last 3 years, NJIT cross country and track athletes have been involved in no less that 8 projects. The highlight came in the spring of 2006 when the team organized their first "24 hour Make-A-Wish" relay to raise funds towards the CACC Conference foundation goal. This single event raised more funds than any of the other 11 Universities in the conference. Coach Alonso believes that the combination of academics and athletics are instrumental for success in the corporate world. The team members are assigned duties within the program, which allow them to develop leadership/management skills that will serve as a foundation for future development.
In his first year at NJIT coaching cross country, coach Alonso started a self funded track & field club team coached by volunteers. Although the Athletic department did not foresee adding any new varsity teams in the near future (and if they did, other sports would be given priority over track & field since there was no facilities available), coach Alonso felt that if he developed a turnkey operation and an opportunity arose, the program could quickly move to the top of the list. He quickly put to work his vast meet management/fundraising skills and hosted no less than 3 cross country meets and 2 track & field invitationals (even though NJIT did not even have their own facilities).
Today, this is a different story with NJIT's new synthetic turf field with a jogging track around the outside (and coach Alonso's "make a track" tool for the outdoor 200m turf oval on the inside). NJIT will also benefit from the new Mondo outdoor track & field complex at West Side Park less than a 2 mile jog from campus as well as the use of the newly Mondo resurfaced Jersey City Armory indoor track complex. With NJIT's move to Division 1, new sports had to be added. Varsity Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field for men and women became the first 4 sports to be added and they did not have to look far for a new Head Track & Field coach either.
Alonso earned a bachelor of engineering degree in electrical engineering from Stevens in 1983, MS in Computer Science in 1985 (Stevens) and an MBA from Fairleigh Dickinson University in 1988.
He is member of Tau Beta Pi honor society as well as a licensed professional engineer in the state of New Jersey and has Level-2 coaching certifications from United States of America Track & Field (USATF).
As a Senior Principal Engineer with Kearfott Guidance & Navigation Corporation (A world-class developer and quality producer of precision state-of-the-art navigation & guidance systems), Alonso has worked on sophisticated electronic projects for the NASA Space Shuttle, B1-B, B2, Centaur/Titan, Trident and other Space/Air/Land/Sea military programs.
He resides in West New York, New Jersey.