Jul 28, 2014
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 St. Thomas Aquinas College’s School of Business students recently won first place in the Rockland Community College (RCC) (NY) Entrepreneurial Business Plan competition, announced Professor Michael Murphy, Dean for the School of Business at the College. The competition was sponsored by the Rockland Chapter of the New York State Society of CPAs. The team received $1,000 as the first place prize.


Team members included School of Business students Nicole Bonanni (Boonton, NJ), Jeanine Grillo (Monroe, NY) and Cedric Williams (Albany, NY) and Caitlin Zungoli (Park Ridge, NJ). The competition required the submission of an original business plan covering all business aspects of the potential start up, including financial, legal, marketing and economic components. Students competed against other teams in an oral presentation supported by a PowerPoint and a question and answer session with the judges. The team received mentoring and guidance from Dr. Deirdre Engels, Assistant Professor of Marketing, and Professor Christine Cahill, Assistant Dean of the School of Business, throughout the competition.


"Wining 1st place in the RCC Entrepreneurial Business Plan competition is evidence of the dedication, knowledge and commitment of our students as well as the excellent, effective, and supportive mentoring by our dedicated faculty. Caitlin, Nicole, Jeanine and Cedric are students who are outstanding representatives of the School of Business,” said Murphy. “These types of experiences are ones that will lead us along the path to being a premiere School of Business. I congratulate them all on a job well done."


The judges based their decisions upon a prescribed set of criteria as outlined in the New York State Small Business Development Center, “A Practical Guide to Preparing Your Business Plan”. The judges included: Josephine Coleman, CPA, Assistant Professor of Business at RCC; Dennis Dale, President of Dale and Dale Associates, Inc.; Mitchell Gusler, CPA, Past-President of the NYS Society of CPAs, Rockland County Chapter; Carlos Hernandez, CPA, Consultant at Dollars + Sense Solutions; Dr. Shamika Mitchell, Assistant Professor of English at RCC; Thomas Morley, Director of the Small Business Development Center at RCC; Dr. Gray Orphee, Associate Professor of Economics at RCC; Cathy Roche, Division Chair of Business and Professional/Public Service at RCC; Mark Rothenberg, Director of SCORE, NY Metro Area; Tony Speranza, Weiss, CPA PLLC, Tax Accountant and Board Member NYS Society of CPAs, Rockland County Chapter; and Nathaniel Williams, Chair of Business at RCC.


The event concluded with the award ceremony and a special guest speaker presentation by Gregory Pereira, President and CEO of First Steps 2 Urban Outreach, a certification training center based in the Bronx, NY.


St. Thomas Aquinas College’s School of Business is accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE) and offers majors in Accounting, Finance, Management, Marketing and Sports Management. The College offers a Master of Business Administration (MBA) program (General Studies, Finance, Management, and Marketing concentrations) with online and on-campus options, as well as Advanced Certificate programs. Additionally, students can opt for the 150 credit Accounting/MBA program which enables them to sit for the Certified Public Accounting exam. For more information about the School of Business, visit: http://www.stac.edu/schools/bs/bs_home.html.


St. Thomas Aquinas College is an independent liberal arts college located on 60 acres in Rockland County, NY which provides education at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The College’s 2,800 full and part time students can choose from more than 100 different majors, minors, specializations, and dual degree programs across three Schools: Arts & Sciences, Business, and Education. The College is recognized by U.S. News & World Report in the Top-Tier for Regional Universities, by Colleges of Distinction in both its New York and Catholic editions, by Affordable Colleges Online as a top College in New York for Return on Investment, and is included as a Military Friendly School®. St. Thomas Aquinas College is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools; its School of Education is accredited by National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE); and its School of Business is accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE). For more information, visit www.stac.edu.


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