When the University established the Department of Music in 1958, Jerome Rosen was the chair. He helped to write both the undergraduate and graduate degree curricula. He retired in 1988.
While studying at UC Berkeley, Rosen became associated with Darius Milhaud, who was teaching at Mills College. In 1949-50 he studied in Paris with Milhaud and took lessons at the Paris Conservatoire from the leading clarinet virtuoso of the era, Ulysse Delécluse.
He went to Paris as the recipient of a UC Berkeley prize, the George Ladd Prix de Paris. Rosen also received Fromm Music Foundation grants (1953, 1954, and 1960), a Guggenheim Fellowship (1958), and a residency at the Rockefeller Study Center in Bellagio, Italy (1982).
Rosen was a composer of sixty works of solo and chamber music, often including clarinet or saxophone, as well as vocal pieces, works of symphonic scope and the operas Calisto and Melibea (1979) and Emperor Norton of the USA (1999), both produced in Main Theatre.