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2020 Virtual Discover Gabelli Diversity Week

Featured Events | Dec 17, 2020 |

Discover Gabelli: Diversity Week comprised five days of virtual engagements that shined light on the Gabelli School’s commitment to diversity and inclusion and gathered industry experts who spoke about corporate efforts in these areas across multiple fields.

The event – a collaboration with the Black & Latinx MBA Association, Gabelli Pride, Fordham Women in Business, and the Fordham Veterans Association – enabled prospective MS and MBA students to learn about topics ranging from establishing inclusion in financial services, representation in marketing, media, and entertainment, and women leading in tech fields.

Early in the week, Jalen Glenn, MBA ‘22, Belen Prebisch, MBA ’21, Juan Villafrade, MS ’20, and Henry Franco, MBA ’21, represented the collaborative student groups on a panel titled, “A Community of Inclusion.”

On Thursday, faculty members Barbara Porco, Steve Raymar, Bozena Mierzejewska, and Sertan Kabadayi discussed the present state of the academic environment through the lens of inclusion, and Dawn Lerman offered an interactive business course that preceded an inclusion happy hour. The week concluded with a fireside chat with Robert Perkins, chief global diversity and inclusion officer at Mondelez International.

While yearly events like the Gabelli School’s Diversity and Inclusion Summit have featured speaker panels and other opportunities to discuss the Gabelli School student experience on inclusion related topics, Discover Gabelli marked the first time that the conversation extended to a prospective student audience at such a large and dynamic scale, virtually over Zoom.

“It’s crucial that we let prospective students hear from individuals at the Gabelli School who can speak authentically about the important cultural issues that face us,” Frankie Sandoval, associate director of admissions and recruiting programs for MS programs, said.

“The students, staff and industry speakers that took part in this week’s event helped us show that, at Fordham, the ideal of cura personalis, caring for the whole person, extends to all people. It’s a genuine expression of how, at the Gabelli School, we deliver personal care and attention that helps our students and truly meets them where they are in their lives.”

Earlier this year, the Gabelli School published a diversity, equity, and inclusion strategic plan to articulate and implement an actionable vision of inclusion excellence. The objectives include establishing and maintaining trust with all members of the school community, including those who identify as diverse, ensuring that the climate of the Gabelli School invites all community members to a sense of belonging, and connecting the school’s many diversity initiatives to its core goals.

Clarence Ball, III, director of diversity, equity, and inclusion at the Gabelli School, said, “Events like Diversity Week have the potential to showcase the rich diversity of our school and highlight the ways which we are working with industry leaders to make our campuses more equitable and inclusive.”

In her opening remarks, Dean Donna Rapaccioli agreed, emphasizing how diversity and inclusion have long been integral to business education at Fordham University.

“Global business makes diversity, inclusion, and cultural awareness important, but at the Gabelli School these values are essential to who we are. Deep in our core, our mission is to educate.”

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