MBA 25 Years: A Celebration of the Graduate Business Program
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Posted by: Angeline Boyer
Change can create new challenges and can be difficult to
accept; however change can be inspiring and is necessary for growth.
Change and development were the primary focus of many of the
conversations at the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the
Master’s in Business Administration program at Saint Peter’s University.
On May 28, alumni and friends of the University gathered in
The Duncan Family Sky Room to celebrate the past, present and future of the
graduate business program. The celebration began with an introduction from Lou
Ruvolo ’80, ’08, director of the graduate business program at Saint Peter’s
University, who discussed the changes in the program over the years. “We are
thrilled to come together tonight to celebrate what began 25 years ago with a
cohort of 16 students and one concentration in management information systems.
Here we are 25 years later with an enrollment of 330 students, with classes at
two campuses and two corporate locations with eight concentrations ranging from
finance to health care administration to risk management to international
business,” he said.
The celebration continued with a special honor for the man
who is credited with founding the MBA program, Alessandro Calianese, Ph.D. ’56.
Dr. Calianese served as a member of the Saint Peter’s community for more than
five decades and is credited with founding the MBA and computer science
programs at the University. He was presented with a Petrean Medal for his
extraordinary service and accomplishments for his work that helped to make
Saint Peter’s what it is today. The Petrean Medal recognizes individuals and
groups for their dedication and service to others. Calianese took the stage to
share the story behind how the MBA program developed from a simple idea to a
successful degree program.
The change and growth of the MBA program wasn’t the only
focus of the evening’s conversation. Terrence J. Checki ’67, distinguished
visiting fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and former vice president
and head of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Emerging Markets and
International Affairs Group, served as the keynote speaker at the event. During
his presentation titled, “A Perspective on the Changing Global Landscape,”
Checki discussed the changes he has seen in Jersey City and Saint Peter’s, as
well as how the world is significantly changing at a rapid pace. “Now change is
generally a good thing, but when what is important changes and the way you look
at it doesn’t, the likelihood is that you will be surprised in ways that
sometimes won’t be so pleasant,” he said.
Checki discussed the current economy and how there has been
a transfer of economic power over the past generation. He demonstrated how
significantly other countries, such as China and India, have grown within the
past few years and how Americans need to be aware that these countries are
competition. He provided advice for how to deal with these international
While change was the focus of the discussion at the MBA 25
Years celebration, the advice from Dr. Calianese and Checki echoed the
importance of one’s values and one’s foundation. Particularly, the values and
foundation many develop at Saint Peter’s.
“There are no words of wisdom I can give you, as most of you
have chosen your way of life at this point, but there are two things that
someone said essentially 2,000 years ago that are worth repeating. Both are
close to home. The first is the Saint Peter’s motto, cura personalis or personal care. If you treat everyone with
personal care, you can’t help but lead a satisfied life and also fulfill the
second, which is the motto of the Jesuits, Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam, or
‘For the greater glory of God,’” said Dr. Calianese.
Checki shared similar sentiments in his advice to a question
from a recent graduate interested in pursuing a career in finance. Checki
suggested recent graduates “bring their values to work.” He went on to thank
the Jesuits at Saint Peter’s for helping him develop into the person he is
Many of the guests left the event with excellent feedback. R.
Patricio Caceres ’13, graduated with a master’s in business administration with
a concentration in international business from Saint Peter’s. Caceres works for
Pershing LLC, and deals with global relationship management in Latin American
markets. He explained that this was why a graduate degree focused on
international business was the right path for him. He was very happy he had the
opportunity to come back to campus to celebrate the MBA program. “I was very
impressed with Terrence Checki. It was excellent to hear from such an
intelligent and accomplished man,” he said.
During the celebration, the University announced a specific
fund, which was created to support the graduate business program. To make a
gift to the fund, please click here. To view photos from the event, please click here.