Coming to St. John's fulfills a childhood dream
Melvin Warren may be one of the very few high school students who decided which college he wanted to attend while still in grade school.
He made up his mind during several family trips from his hometown in Georgia to visit the New York City borough of Queens. Melvin remembers staring out the car window as his father drove past the grey stone buildings and expansive green of St. John’s University’s Queens campus.
“It left a strong impression on me,” he recalls. “I liked it the minute I saw it. I decided that was where I wanted to go to college.” It was a decision he never altered. Later, Melvin also determined that accounting was the right career for him.
Finally, in his senior year at Baldwin High School in Milledgeville, GA, he got the chance to fulfill both goals. Applying to various colleges, Melvin revisited the St. John’s campus. “I still felt the same way I did when I first saw the campus.” He did his research and learned that St. John’s has a highly ranked business school, The Peter J. Tobin College of Business.
Melvin was ready to follow his passion. Even though he was awarded a state scholarship giving him the chance to attend any Georgia college tuition-free, Melvin chose St. John’s.
“Opportunities come along — and I take them,” says the 22-year-old business major. The President of the St. John’s chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants, Melvin is in the fourth year of the Tobin College’s five-year, combined accounting B.S. and M.B.A. degree program.
Melvin’s capabilities and drive have already caught the eye of leading business firms. When he graduates, Melvin will assume the well paying full-time position he was offered at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), one of the nation’s top-four accounting firms. “It’s an amazing position, one that I never would have gotten if I hadn’t been an intern there.”
Melvin applauds another feature of the St. John’s experience, the Vincentian mission. “When I came to St. John’s, it was new to me. But I found the idea of serving those less fortunate and living ethically and compassionately, very motivating. I try to practice these values in my daily life.”
Equipped with his St. John’s education, and the values it emphasizes, Melvin knows he made the right choice when he was first smitten as a child.