A Year's Worth of Wisdom

Notable Alumni Share Lessons Learned at Dean's Roundtable Series

In 2017 Dean Katepalli Sreenivasan hosted a series of roundtable luncheons, inviting a select group of students who had earned the privilege based on their academic performance, service to the school, and recommendation of their professors, to chat with distinguished alumni from a variety of fields.

For some of the alumni, it marked the first time they had returned to the School of Engineering since their graduations. They got the chance to marvel at new facilities like the MakerSpace that had not existed during their own days here, appreciate the welcome diversity of the current student body, and revisit sites they remembered fondly. The students, in turn, got career guidance, life advice, and an inkling of just how valuable their Tandon educations will prove for them in the future.

Joseph Amendolara (‘72)

Field of Study: Mechanical Engineering
Role: President of Electrotech Service Equipment Corporation

“You have to be like sponges — you have to listen and absorb, and be passionate. It was here [at the School of Engineering] where I learned to think analytically and solve people’s problems.”

Dean's Roundtable with Amendolara


Charles L. Blanksteen (’79)

Field of Study: Finance
Role: Co-founder of ActiveHealth Management and co-patent holder of the Care Engine technology

“Get involved with cutting-edge companies that are breaking down the old, entrenched ways of doing things, think about integration and connectivity, and you can really make a positive impact.”

Dean's Rountable with Blanksteen


Fadi Chehadé (’85)

Field of Study: Computer Science
Role: Chair and CEO of Chehadé & Co. and Senior Advisor at the World Economic Forum

“When you earn your Tandon degrees and are creating technology, you must keep in mind moral and ethical concerns, a sense of responsibility, and the good of the community. What you build can make a real difference in the world, so do it with care.”

Dean's Rountable with Chehadé


Ed Knapp (’85)

Field of Study: Electrical Engineering
Role: Chief Technical Officer of the American Tower Corporation

“In the end, faith in your ability, luck, and hard work are all going to play major roles in your success, whatever career path you choose.”

Dean's Rountable with Knapp


John Nicols (’85)

Field of Study: Chemical Engineering
Role: President and CEO of Codexis

“There isn’t a person in this room who is not capable of leading a research and development team. Just identify your experience gaps and go out and fill them. Look to your mentors and model yourselves on them.”

Dean's Rountable with Nicols


Ralph Sorrentino (’82)

Field of Study: Electrical Engineering
Role: Partner at Deloitte

“Become an expert! Be the one people can approach to get help in translating their ideas and business requirements into IT solutions that create value.”

Dean's Rountable with Sorrentino


Joan Tully (’74)

Field of Study: Operations Research
Role: Professor of Mathematics at Saint Peter’s University and former Global Information Technology Manager at ExxonMobil

“There’s always a need to look at something new ... to be able to continuously learn and apply [your knowledge] is very important.”

Dean's Rountable with Tully