There was a whole lot of excellence on May 20 at Fordham’s Rose Hill campus.

While students from Fordham College at Rose Hill were honored at Encaenia, the College of Business Administration feted its most accomplished seniors at the annual CBA Awards Night in Keating Hall.

Candice Sorbera was one of two valedictorians for CBA’s Class of 2010. Photos by Gina Vergel

Nearly 100 CBA students received medals for their accomplishments in the areas of accounting, finance, management, entrepreneurship and marketing. Students were also recognized for their excellence in academic, community and humanitarian endeavors, and for their leadership skills.

“Millennials are said to be overexposed on Facebook and always connected to a computer or by text messaging. But that interconnectedness has taught you a sense of responsibility,” said Donna Rapaccioli, Ph.D., dean of CBA and head of the business faculty at Fordham. “I see it with the implicit support you’ve shown each other through the internship opportunities you pass along and the interview tips you share.

“You are transparent and committed to each other. You do what those behind the companies that were supposedly ‘too big to fail’ could not do,” Rapaccioli added.

CBA chose two valedictorians because both students held perfect 4.0 GPAs throughout their academic careers at Fordham.

Candice Sorbera, who will earn a degree in finance, said Fordham students have an uncanny way of approaching opportunities.

“We understand that jobs don’t just appear on campus or fall out of the sky and into our laps,” she said. “Rather, they are achieved through ravenous hunger and conscious seeking. As we embark on our journey into the real world, I’m not worried about any of our futures. I know the type of character we all possess and I believe it will take each and every one of us where we want to go.”

Adam Milovec was co-valedictorian for CBA’s Class of 2010.

Adam Milavec, who specialized in accounting, said he and his fellow graduates should encounter challenges with a “refuse to lose” mentality.

“During our college careers, we have built a foundation for success,” he said. “We will be able to draw from a well-rounded Fordham education to meet the demands of an increasingly competitive business world.”

The salutatorian, Joshua Strauss, an accounting major, also was honored.

“Fordham has a distinct meaning for us all,” he said. “Fordham means an education from one of the finest institutions in the world. Fordham means friends, who I see here tonight, and who will become the future leaders of Fortune 500 companies.”

The CBA Alumnus of the Year Award was presented to Christopher Fitzmaurice (CBA ’84), who was the head of U.S. Dollar Interest Rate Trading when he retired from Citigroup in 2006. Today he leads thecapital campaign fundraising effort for Hughes Hall, which will be transformed into the new home for CBA.
New “Senior Legacy” awards were given to those who helped create new paths for future CBA students to follow, and those who developed new clubs or revitalized existing programs at Fordham.

Among those honorees were:

• Angela Luongo and Anu Joseph, who helped found the Fordham chapter of Smart Women Securities, a club that focuses on investment education for undergraduate women;
• Sally Reyes, who helped found the Fordham chapter of the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting; and
John Skelton, the first CBA student to be drafted into the National Football League.

Faculty members also were honored. The CBA Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence went to James Kelly, Ph.D., a lecturer in economics and finance, who works with the CFA Institute and advised a group of students who were given the opportunity to manage a small portion of Fordham’s endowment this year.

Dennis Cappello, adjunct assistant professor of business law, who has inspired many students to pursue law school after graduation, was the part-time faculty honoree.


Gina Vergel is Senior Director of Communications. She oversees the digital news coverage, public relations, and social media for the university. Before joining Fordham in 2007, Gina worked as a reporter for the Home News Tribune, and The Ridgewood News, where she won Society of Professional Journalist (New Jersey chapter) awards for breaking news and feature writing, respectively. She can be reached at [email protected] or (646) 579-9957.