March 28, 2011
When Tom Fike first started working at St. John’s University in
August 2008, he knew what to expect.
“The University was described to me as being like a family,” Fike
said. “And in my years here, interacting with so many alumni, I’ve
found that to be absolutely true.”
serves as a Development Officer for St. John’s The Peter J. Tobin
College of Business, building relationships with alumni and friends
and asking for their support of programs within the college. He
seeks not only financial support, but also ways to keep them
engaged with current St. John’s students.
“Our alumni enjoy establishing connections with students in any
setting,” Fike noted. “The family atmosphere of St. John’s is a
unique one, and our graduates are very willing to participate in
our programs. As a result, we make sure that there are a number of
creative ways for them to interact with students, and I’ve found
that these relationships are very beneficial for both the students
and the alumni.”
One such initiative is the Executive-in-Resident Program (EIRP),
which allows undergraduate and graduate students of the Tobin
College of Business to work alongside St. John’s alumni who have
successful careers as business executives. It is a wonderful
opportunity for students to gain real-world business experience
while simultaneously receiving college credit.
“That’s definitely one of our most successful programs,” Fike said.
“We’ve also been working with the Career Center to connect our
alumni and students, especially early on in the students’ careers.
So, for example, we’ve just recently arranged to bring 13 alumni in
to speak to students during an introductory freshman business
class. They tell the students what to pay attention to in their
academic careers and inform them of what resources are available at
St. John’s – like internships, interview training, etc. – that can
help them secure a great job.”
A graduate of Loyola University of Chicago, where he earned a B.S.
in Communications, Fike knows the benefits of working in a large,
“The resources of New York City make St. John’s a natural draw for
people who are looking to succeed in business and develop a solid
career,” he noted. “That’s one of the reasons that the Tobin
College of Business has so many alumni that stay in the
metropolitan area, which makes it that much easier to reach out to
them and keep them connected.”Having attended Catholic schools
throughout most of his life, Fike also knows the importance of
service for those less fortunate. He’s been impressed with St.
John’s alumni’s eagerness to give back to the community.
“Here at St. John’s, the spirit of giving back and helping the
underserved is such a high priority,” he said. “I really enjoy
seeing it so clearly demonstrated by our alumni, too.”
Fike recently helped out at St. John’s Bread and Life, a University
initiative that provides food and other necessary services for
those less fortunate in the greater New York metropolitan area. He
was accompanied by a St. John’s alumnus who works for Goldman
“The alumnus thought it would be a great idea to get other St.
John’s alumni from Goldman Sachs involved in Bread and Life,” Fike
explained. “So now we’re partnering with the firm’s Community
TeamWorks Program to organize a day where we can bring a whole
bunch of Goldman employees over here to Bread and Life. It should
be a great initiative.”
Whether it be through service, mentoring current students or
financial contributions, Fike makes sure alumni from the Tobin
College of Business remain active members of the St. John’s
“It’s a great place to work and a great place to build
relationships,” he said. “And the best part is that our alumni
still feel such strong connections, like they’ll always be a part
of this big St. John’s family.”