Over the years, thousands of business professionals have developed their skills while attending Alfred State College. Our alumni serve as tremendous role models and sources of inspiration for our students. Listed below is a small sampling of recent graduates and how they successfully started their careers:
Thomas Daniels is a member of the center for Equity, Inclusion and Title IX. His current title is the Coordinator of Intercultural Student Support at Alfred State. Thomas’s primary focus is to assist efforts that cultivate self-discovery, awareness, advocacy, and empowerment in an inclusive environment with an emphasis on the international student community. He Co-chairs the Kaleidoscope Coalition and oversees the Center for Intercultural Exploration. He also serves as an advisor to the following clubs: International Club, Fashion Empire, Alfred State Dance Team, Chess Club, and Youth Enlightenment. Building a culture of inclusive excellence, Thomas was voted in as a member of the Board of Directors at Hornell Concern for Youth. This is a local organization for at risk youth, between eight and 19 years of age.
Thomas’s experience at Alfred State gives him keen insight into some challenges and pitfalls one may face. Thomas was a student athlete at Alfred State, participating in basketball, football, and track & field. Beyond the sports world, Thomas was inducted into the Psi Beta National Honor Society.
Advice: “In order to experience optimal functioning, one must learn to control their thoughts, thinking positively, and thrive using all available resources, by any means necessary. For every minor or major progression, acknowledge your advancement and keep up the good work. A glimpse of excellence will permeate when challenges are met with the will to prevail.”
Abby Kohler is a freelance court reporter for Precision Reporters, P.C. She joined Precision Reporters in 2016 following her graduation and retrieval of an associate degree in court and realtime reporting from Alfred State College.
Being exposed to new situations daily, Abby’s knowledge and abilities as a stenographer continue to grow. Abby had been introduced to many different varieties of proceedings and has attended and taken the record in everything from a New York State hearing to recording an expert’s testimony despite her recent entrance into the field.
Advice: "Take all the good and bad experiences and turn them into learning lessons in order to evolve into a better reporter – that is the key to improving."
Katie Puntoriero is a freelance court reporter at ACR of WNY in Buffalo. Puntoriero graduated summa cum laude from Alfred State in 2012 with an associate degree in court and realtime reporting. She was the recipient of the Paul B. Orvis Award for Excellence. Upon graduating, she began her career at Jack W. Hunt & Associates, Inc., also in Buffalo - a job she was offered a month before graduation attributable to the court reporting program's requirement to complete internship hours. Puntoriero transitioned to her current position at ACR of WNY in April 2016. After a year and a half of working as a court reporter,
Puntoriero re-enrolled online in the technology management program and worked towards her bachelor's degree. She finished her last semester abroad in Sorrento, Italy, through Alfred's study abroad program, and graduated in May 2015. The primary responsibility of a freelance court reporter requires taking depositions in local law offices. Puntoriero's versatility enables her to sit through depositions, whether they're done in 45 minutes or take up the majority of the workday. Upon completion of the deposition, she must edit and then proofread the transcript before compiling a finalized copy for the law office. Her self-discipline and motivation enable her to complete the transcripts in an efficient and timely manner. Because of the flexibility of her career choice, Puntoriero has had the opportunity to travel and run half marathons in 27 states.
Advice: "My advice to current Alfred State students and all court reporting students is to embrace the workload and necessary practice because the payoff is well worth it!”
Alanna Conciardo is a Financial Planning Associate at Level Financial Advisors in Amherst, NY. She joined the firm as an intern in June 2016 and was hired as a full-time employee in October 2016. She graduated dumma cum laude from Alfred State with a bachelor’s degree in financial planning in December 2016. Alanna was president of Alfred State’s Financial Planning Association Student Chapter, treasurer of the Business Professionals of America club, and treasurer for the Civic Engagement team.
At Level she assists with client meetings, preparing financial plans, and researching strategies to help clients save money, reduce taxes, and improve their financial lives. In a period of transitioning growth, she offers her millennial outlook on financial planning in order to help add to the firm’s effortless competitive edge. Soon after she was hired on the team full-time, she began writing blog posts and finding articles for the firm to post to social media. She will continuously add generation-specific insight to appeal to a new demographic market through advanced technology and media design.
Advice: “For those of you who are currently attending Alfred State, my advice to you is to really try and absorb all of the knowledge that your professors share with you. It’s not just about knowing the information for the next big test. It’s about integrating that knowledge once you enter your career. On a daily basis I use topics and theories that I learned while a student but had to refresh on now in order to properly use. The professors have so much wisdom they are willing to bestow upon you, and once you get into your industry you will see just how “right” they were. Most of all, enjoy your time at school, get involved on campus, and go out on the weekends. I will always cherish the memories and friendships I made while attending Alfred and you should too!”
Steven Elwell, CFP®, is a Partner and Vice President of Level Financial Advisors in Amherst, NY. He joined Level (then known as Schroeder, Braxton & Vogt) as an intern in 2007 and quickly grew to lead the financial planning department and eventually become vice president. Steven graduated from Alfred State with a BBA in financial planning in 2007. He passed the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional exam in the summer of 2007 and officially became a CFP® professional in 2009. In 2012, Steven was named one of Buffalo Business First’s “30 under 30 Outstanding Young Professionals” for his various charitable efforts and career achievements.
During his time with the company, Steven has helped the firm grow from $160 million in assets under management to over $310 million at the end of 2016. Steven brings a deep financial planning expertise to his firm and his clients with a special emphasis on helping people save money on taxes. He also is an ongoing student of the personal financial advice industry and has helped his firm create innovative solutions to adapt as the industry changes.
Advice: "Use something they are passionate about to both solve a problem and help people at the same time, which will ultimately lead to a fulfilling career and life."
Maura Parks is a Media Relations Assistant at Jacksonville University. She joined the Dolphins in 2016 and is the primary contact for JU’s Division I cross country, track & field, and softball teams. Parks’ feature story on JU women’s cross country runner Katy Solis was picked up by Jacksonville’s local television station, WJXT, who then featured Solis.
Parks graduated from Alfred State in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration in sport management. Parks’ experience in sports information began in 2014 during an internship in the athletic communications department at Cornell University, where she primarily worked with the Big Red’s nationally-ranked women’s ice hockey and women’s lacrosse teams. Following her time at Cornell, Parks spent four months in Daytona Beach, FL as an intern for the Chicago Cubs’ Advanced-A affiliate, the Daytona Cubs. She assisted in many aspects of the minor league team’s day-to-day operations, including on-field promotions, ticketing, community relations, and special events. Following the end of the season, Parks was hired at Division III Frostburg State University in Maryland as a media relations assistant, where she assisted with all aspects of the Bobcats’ 21 sports, including as the primary contact for FSU’s nationally-ranked men’s lacrosse team. After honing her skills at Frostburg State, Parks was hired at Jacksonville.
Advice: "A strong work ethic, a positive attitude, and a willingness to learn are all keys to succeeding in working in intercollegiate athletics. If you are persistent and continue to work towards improving yourself and are willing to learn different aspects of your chosen career, there will be no limits to what you can accomplish."
Darin Van Duser is the Baseball Operations Supervisor for Cooperstown Dreams Park. He joined Cooperstown Dreams Park in 2012, working there in a summer job throughout college. In September 2016, he was hired full-time with Cooperstown Dreams Park. Van Duser graduated from Alfred State in May 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in sport management.
Van Duser spends the off-season at the company headquarters in Salisbury, NC, preparing for the upcoming summer tournaments. In the summer, Van Duser helps run 13-week long tournaments consisting of 104 12U baseball teams each week from across the country. Throughout the year, Van Duser tries to provide a once-in-a-lifetime cultural experience for young boys and girls who love the game of baseball. He always tries to do as much as possible for every single guest that arrives at Cooperstown Dreams Park.
Advice: “Never be satisfied with 'doing enough'; go above and beyond with everything you do! The “little things” are the most important and remembered things.”
Amanda Burns is the Assistant to the Dean of the School of Business at St. John Fisher College. Burns manages the Dean's Office, supporting the Dean, Assistant Dean, faculty and nearly 1,000 students. She leads the School of Business Women’s Leadership Series, chairing the steering committee, and given her passion for healthy living, actively serves as a board member of the Healthy U Committee. Burns has received the coveted staff recognition honoree every year she has been employed by the college, evidence of her significant contribution to the success of the institution. Prior to coming to Fisher, Burns served as the Director and Lead Trainer of a Public Computing Center, has over 10 years management experience in professional floral design and the gift industries, and municipal planning board experience.
Ms. Burns is passionate about service to the community. Currently she serves as a member of the board for Mosaic Church, a non-profit, faith-based, Christian community in Rochester. This broad base of professional and personal achievements is underpinned by her education which helped to shape her extensive and eclectic post-graduate experiences (Burns ‘94 AAS Floriculture Merchandising, ‘10 BBA Technology Management). In her limited free time, Ms. Burns can be found training for her next 5k, half marathon or organizing a “Ragnar Relay” team of 12 runners for an annual 200 mile race in the Adirondacks.
Advice: "Develop your leadership skills and mentor others to do the same!"
Travis Harvey graduated from Alfred State in 2014 with an associate degree in building trades: building construction. He then continued his education with Alfred State and received his BBA in technology management in 2016. Upon completion of the technology management program, Travis completed his required internship with Glennwood Custom Builders, a pretentious full-service residential design and build company servicing Western North Carolina and Upstate South Carolina. After the internship with Glennwood, Travis was offered a full-time position as a project manager.
Travis is now a resident of Tryon, NC and works full-time with Glennwood Custom Builders as a project manager where he oversees new construction, as well as services for past clients of Glennwood for maintenance and remodels. This is a dream job for Travis and he very much enjoys the southern lifestyle.
Advice: "An education is what you make it; put in the work and take as much away from your education as you can and you will see the rewards in the end.”
Marcus Tagliaferri serves as a General Manager focused on Logistics for Anheuser-Busch Inc. Marcus is a 2011 graduate of the technology management program at Alfred State. Marcus believes his time at Alfred State prepared him not only to continue his education and obtain his MBA, but also to succeed in his professional career. He completed his MBA at Clarkson University.
Marcus also has previous work experience in both the computer hardware industry and with the NYS Government. One of his most memorable experiences at Alfred State was his time spent studying abroad in Italy.
Advice: "Dream big and take advantage of all the opportunities Alfred State College has to offer."