On Saturday, May 20, Fordham will confer bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees upon more than 5,400 members of the Class of 2023. For the new graduates, it’s the culmination of years of research and study, and countless memorable moments on campus and in New York City.

But it’s not the end of their Fordham experience.

When they graduate, they officially join the Fordham University Alumni Association—a global network of more than 200,000 people. Through events in and beyond New York City, career support resources, affinity groups, and regional chapters, these new alumni will never be too far from Fordham friends and potential mentors.

To help welcome them to the alumni community, we invited some Fordham grads to share a bit of personal wisdom, advice, and encouragement with their fellow Rams.

Don’t Be Afraid to Go Off the Beaten Path

Everyone’s timelines look extremely different, so always make the best possible choice for you in your current moment, and you can never go wrong.

Don’t be afraid to go off the beaten path. Post-grad and your early 20s aren’t for figuring things out right away; they’re for taking risks and learning more about yourself every day.

—Alexa Pipia
Fordham College at Lincoln Center, Class of 2014

Export Your Gifts

May you always know how good it feels to open doors for others, through your wisdom born of life experiences—by being a role model, a mentor, a friend. May you continue to export your gifts, sharing with others that all that is really important in life is grace, passion, and an elegance of spirit, whether you’re raising a family, building a career, playing a game, losing or winning, or reaching out your hand to help a friend.

—Jacqueline Fenley
Thomas More College, Class of 1968

Try Something New

I had followed my mother’s career path and always thought that I would work in magazines—ever since I was little. I ended up working in public relations at an educational consultancy. It’s an industry that I honestly had never even considered while I was in school, but I absolutely love the work that I do. Always be open to trying something new; chances are that you may love it!

And even if you weren’t as engaged with Fordham as you would have liked while you were a student, it is never too late to get involved. I regretted not joining more clubs and making more connections, but I decided to get involved with the Fordham Young Alumni Committee in the fall of 2018 and have since made up for lost time!

—Megan Zuckerman
Fordham College at Lincoln Center, Class of 2016

Keep Your Relationships Strong

Reach out to friends OFTEN! Especially if they move away. Even if it’s a quick “How’ve you been” or “Thought of you” text, that goes a long way in keeping your relationships made at Fordham strong.

—Michael Bennis
Gabelli School of Business, Classes of 2017 and 2018

Be Open to New Experiences

You don’t have to have your entire life planned out right now (or ever!)—be open to new experiences and opportunities because you never know where they will lead.

—Christine Schwall-Pecci
Fordham College at Rose Hill, Class of 2009

Cultivate Humility and Pride

Humility and pride should not be seen as opposites or equivalents; they are separate virtues that can be applied to situations with, without, and subsequent to the other. Humility does not mean you shouldn’t defend yourself and your opinions. Pride does not mean you should be over-stubborn and egotistical.
They mean that you must always keep the bigger picture in sight.

So stick to your principles and protect yourself, but what you think is correct is not always what is logical, and vice versa.

Good luck on your journey, and even though you’re done with school, your education has just begun.

—Robert Stryczek
Gabelli School of Business, Class of 2021
School of Law, Class of 2024

Be True to Your Convictions

Hold true to your values—both ethically and morally—and you will never be wrong. Sometimes you may stand alone in conviction, and that is OK!

—Noelle Bauer
Graduate School of Social Service, Class of 2017