2/11/2016 7:59:31 AM

Student Conference in Business

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

By Mary Barrett '14

Earlier this month, Siena College students presented their research and were recognized for their academic achievements during the 9th annual Student Conference in Business.

“This is my favorite day of the year,” said School of Business Dean Frederick DeCasperis, Ed.D. “It exudes greatness from all of the students.”

Students shared with the community their academic research in categories including experiential and engaged learning, economics, finance, marketing and entrepreneurship. Participants said that working on research outside the classroom kept them engaged.

“The one biggest advantage of doing research outside the classroom is the ability to work with real data. The information doesn’t come from a textbook, we’re gathering it ourselves in a subject that's both interesting and relevant in the business environment,” said accounting major Ena Keric ’14.

Preparing for the conference also gave students a real-world sense of responsibility. “I made my own schedule and had to hold myself accountable when pieces of my project were due,” said economics major Audrey Sabatini ’14.

Other students noted the similarities they saw to the world of business, a world many will be entering in just a few weeks.

“In classes, a lot of the time you get to work on research-type projects but you usually submit it to your professor and it ends there,” said philosophy major Melissa Fichera ’15. “With this conference, you had the opportunity to present your findings to a room full of people in a professional, well-thought out manner. In my opinion, that's more realistic in a workplace setting than just submitting a proposal to your boss and walking away. You’re going to have to not only present, but also defend and potentially persuade people about your research.”

The conference’s keynote speaker was Siena graduate and former American Red Cross President of Humanitarian Services Gerald DeFrancisco ’68. Before joining the Red Cross in 2008, the United States Army veteran was president of two global consulting firms and prior to that, DeFrancisco had a distinguished 29-year career at AT&T where he was a senior executive. He also found time to teach at the college level.

During his speech, DeFrancisco discussed the benefits of receiving a liberal arts education, like the one provided by Siena College. “In the observing and questioning of things, we appraise knowledge,” DeFrancisco said. He urged students to “ask the right questions and listen.” Ideas, DeFrancisco noted, that are mentioned in the School of Business mission statement.

With the experience gained and insight absorbed at the Student Conference in Business, Siena College students are poised for success and prepared to, as DeCasperis said, “exude greatness,” when they begin their careers.

Contact: Ken Jubie
Contact E-mail: communications@siena.edu

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