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Cardinal courier (Rochester, N.Y.) 2002-current, October 02, 2002, Image 5

Image and text provided by St. John Fisher College

Persistent link: http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/np00090001/2002-10-02/ed-1/seq-5/


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Cardinal Courier O & A Page 5 October 2, 2002 T a l k i n g f i n a n c e w i t h P e c c h i a STAFF WRITER A U O R A NERVINA John Tecclxia, the Chief Finan­ cial Officer o f St. John Fisher Col­ lege, discusses the financial future o f the college , the impact of the Buf­ falo Bills, and national recognition through the power o f exposure. Q: Many people may be intimidated when they hear the job title o f Chief Financial Officer. Could you explain, in simple terms, a day at the office? A: , I deal with internal people from, staff to faculty, to external people such as bankers and. invest­ ment dealers. I handle a lot of administrative and back office sit­ uations. A typical day would include a lot of meetings, phone calls and e-mails. Basically what I do is solve problems. Q: What are a couple of recent problems tbat yon have had to solve here on campus? A: “Well, recently students approached us and expressed their desire for an option with their meal plans. From that we gave them the 14 and 10 plan. Along those lines, many people from the Woodlands were unhappy that they had to have a meal plan wheu they have their own kitchens ia their homes. We solved that prob­ lem by eliminating the food plan as a requirement. Now it is an option. Another recent problem was the change of our investment strate­ gies in the endowments. Q: Can you explain in basic terms what an endowment is and what process you go through in receiving funds? A: An endowment is like having a big savings account. They are created through fund raising activ­ ities. Let’s say a donor gives the college a million dollars restricted (that means we can not actually use the money, but rather the prof­ it we make off of it) what we do is we take that money and give it to an investment manager, say for example, Merrill Lynch. That money will be invested into stocks. We then in return generate income off of the dividends, interest, or it will grow through market value, As you know, stocks go up and down. This year, stocks went down substantially, and when that hap­ pens, so does the overall wealth of a college. All colleges everywhere lost a substantial amount of money this year. It is just our economy, it fluctuates. Q: Students are seeing the many changes that have hap­ pened on campus, like the ren­ ovations and fiber ware upgrade. Would it be safe to assume that this is a reflection that Fisher is in a decent finan­ cial standing? A: A lot of what they are seeing is the construction, and from, that, no, that is not an accurate reflec­ tion. These renovations have been built on borrowed money. And this has to be paid back over about 25- 30 years. It’s no different from buying a house and taking out a mortgage. Because of the decline in stocks, I don’t think many col­ leges are in “good” financial stand­ ing, We are much better off than we were six years ago, and much of that is in thanks to Dr. Keough. She is a marketing extraordinaire. Q: Do you think that the increase in tuition will deter potential students from enrolling in Fisher? A: Absolutely not. This is a great school, and people will recog­ nize that no matter what the cost. Q: Do you consider Fisher to be a “prestigious” school? D i V e r o n i c a ’ s h a r d w o r k r e w a r d e d STAFF WRITER JOSHUA TOMASZEWSKI On Friday night at St. John Fisher College’s annual Jack Palvi- no Communications/Journalismi Hall of Fame Dinner and Induction Ceremony, sports writer Jeff DiVeronica will be inducted into the Hall of Fame. DiVeronica is best known for his work covering local sports such as the Rochester Rhinos and Syra­ cuse Basketball for Rochester’s Democrat and Chronicle. Right from the beginning, DiVeronica had to deal with diffi­ cult working situations because, according to him, up to that time, Fisher’s facilities for putting out the school’s newspaper, the Pioneer; were archaic. “The Pioneer had very crude working situations and we had to paste up the copy when we got it from the printer,” said DiVeronica.. “We learned through trial by fire, basically.” DiVeronica’s ability to make the best of situations would end up being one of his most important traits. “In a way, the lack of facilities at Fisher, weeded out all the people who didn’t really want to do the job,” he said. When he graduated from Fisher in 1991, DiVeronica figured it would take a couple of weeks to pat his bachelor’s degree to use. “I was still working part time at the movie theater and part time at the mall,” says DiVeronica. “It was­ n’t very fun.\ In truth, it took six months before an undersized paper about 45 minutes south of Columbus, John Follaco Democrat and Chronicle sports- writer Jeff DiVeronica employs his strong uiork ethic while on the job. Ohio offered him his first job ia print. The tiny newspaper in a town called Chillicothe liked. DiVeronica’s resume, -which, showed that he'd been working part time for two years at the- Democrat and Chronicle taking high school sports calls and doing write ups. Maybe it was because i t was. close to home, maybe it was. because he liked the idea of staying in the Northeast or general New Tork area, either way the decision, to accept the position at the news­ paper was simple. “It was one of the greatest deci­ sions of my life,” said DiVeronica. The little newspaper of Chilli­ cothe had circulation numbers that ranged from sixteen to eighteen A: Well, your most prestigious colleges are your most expensive colleges. I have been around and seen a lot, and I believe that a col­ lege’s prestige occurs through the result of how students perform and how we build as a campus community. Here at Fisher, we don’t just teach instruction, -wo teach a way a life. Q: Do you feel that the Buf­ falo Bills have added in any­ way to the prestige o f the col­ lege? A: Well, it gives the community and college an immense amount of exposure. We have all of these dif­ ferent people coming to the cam­ pus- it has been a win-win situa­ tion for everybody. We have definitely gained by having them here, and have just finishing sign­ ing a ten-year renewal with them, so they will be with us until 20L2, Q: You mentioned exposure, now do we get to advertise through the Buffalo Bills? A: Yes. We may have a player or two in an upcoming W advertise­ ment. And we will have a sign in Ralph Wilson Stadium with one of our themes like \courage” or “heart”. They give us that value which is hard to put a dollar amount on. Q: Where would you say the financial future of Fisher Is headed? A: We are investing in the stu­ dents, like increasing scholarship money. We are also investing in the facilities, if you look around you can see that. And we are investing in educational programs, especially graduate programs. The school is coming out, and we have much more visibility. We still want to keep the “small school” appeal, but I would have to say that yes, we are growing. I know that there was a large amount of incoming freshmen this year. To keep that “small school” image, are you planning to up the quality of acceptance as a means of limiting enrollment? A: We are striving to get the best students; I would feel safe say­ ing that our pre-requisites to qual­ ifications are up there. Q: lastly, ten years from now, where do you see Fisher? A: Ten years from now, I see Fisher as a major national Liberal Arts College. A nationally recog­ nized tier one school from the ranking standpoint. It will be bet­ ter and stronger. That means that when students graduate from here, ten year's from now, as the school and reputation grows, that value to them, even though they aren’t here anymore is always there. The value of a degree from this school will only enhance over time. Email address: an9223@yfc.edu thousand and had a grand total of two staff members, the sports edi­ tor and DiVeronica. Although he was not employed at a major newspaper with hun­ dreds of staff, there were benefits. In a short period of time he obtained an enormous amount of hands-on experience running a newspaper. DiVeronica wrote columns, fea­ ture stories, and helped with copy editing and lay out. He covered high school sports and major sport­ ing events like Ohio St. football and basketball. Suddenly, DiVeron­ ica’s modest newspaper job was yielding big dividends. “It was really neat,” said DiVeronica. “People get into this business and they want all the glamorous positions like writing in the big cities. But the most impor­ tant thing to me was that people were reading what I was doing.” “Sometimes, you get out there and think ‘oh well, no one is read­ ing this’ but that’s not the case. Walking into a gymnasium out there people knew who I was.” A decade later, people are still reading DiVeronica’s work and he still has a great work ethic. “I never thought that I was the most talented or most gifted writer in the history,” he said. “However, one thing that I will stack myself against anyone is, you will never “out work” me. With hard work, you can overcome, whether it’s deficiencies in equipment or defi­ ciencies in your ability. If you work hard you can compensate.” Email address: jjt4201@yfc.edu Beauty and Salon Services Guide S J F C S t u d e n t D i s c o u n t $5.00 Off any Service We Offer the Very Best Customized Facial and Body Skin Caie Treatments using innovative Dermalogica ™ Products laser hairfi. vascular refnov&S » esthetic skin services 385-9130 a t A m ici Salon Panorama Plaza, 1601 Penff eld Road, niitiii»!»iiimaWlfliiiiiiiiiiri Indulge? In/the? ^. - etfp&r'Lence? 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