Success Stories Undergraduate | May 05, 2020 | Gabelli School of Business
Success Story: Alexandra Gallagher, GABELLI’20, on a Transformative Gabelli School Experience
Alexandra Gallagher was a pragmatist when it came to her career goals. Although she initially wanted to become a professional ballerina (she studied at the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre and performed at New York’s Metropolitan Opera House on numerous occasions) she knew that a dancer’s career is relatively short, and she would need an education that could support her post-dance aspirations in arts management.
Professional dance remained her focus until she took an introductory course in ﬁnancial accounting during her sophomore year. She truly enjoyed the subject and met with her professors and advisors about pursuing a career in accounting. The following semester, she changed her major.
Gallagher’s career re-assessment has paid oﬀ. After graduating in May 2020, she will begin a full-time position at PwC’s New York oﬃce as an Assurance Associate this fall.
As she puts it, “I am greatly looking forward to beginning my career in the next few months and leveraging the incredible business education I gained at the Gabelli School of Business on the job.”
Gallagher’s decision to attend the Gabelli School seems a perfect ﬁt for the New York native. Aside from the location, she was drawn to the school’s Jesuit background. She had grown up with a Catholic school education and loved “the empathy and strong sense of community” it oﬀered. She also felt strongly aligned to the Jesuit value of “men and women for others.”
Hard work, dedication and a strong sense of altruism have characterized Gallagher’s Fordham journey. She has been involved in numerous activities: She was on the Dean’s Council at the Gabelli School; she worked with Fr. Vincent DeCola. SJ, to start the freshman mentor program; she participated in Fall Preview, open houses and Admitted Student Days, and also served as a freshman advising mentor. On top of that, she was a student coordinator of the Fordham Women in Business Retreat for the past two years, worked as a teaching assistant for the ﬁrst-year Ground Floor course and as an academic tutor with the Boyle Society.
Gallagher also served as teaching assistant to Prof. Michael McSherry, an experience she describes as a great learning opportunity that provided her incredible insight into her career. In turn, she has mentored other Gabelli students as her way of giving back, a role she would like to continue post-graduation.
Gallagher has garnered numerous awards and honors during her time at Fordham, including memberships in the prestigious William E. Boyle Society, the business honors society Beta Gamma Sigma, and Jesuit honors society Alpha Sigma Nu, among others. She also is one of two Gabelli students recognized by Poets&Quants’ 100 Best and Brightest Business Majors of 2020.
Her overall goal is to build a career in public accounting and work her way up the corporate ladder. Sustainability initiatives hold a particular interest, including work done by the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board to standardize and measure corporate social responsibility. Looking forward, Alexandra said she would love to play a role in initiatives at PwC to standardize sustainability reporting. And, leveraging her life-long interest in health and wellness, Gallagher hopes to become involved with PwC’s Be Well Work Well program, which encourages and supports personal wellness both inside and outside the workplace.