Saunders College of Business celebrates International Women's Day, a global celebration of social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women worldwide. In observance, Saunders asked faculty and staff what their most significant accomplishment has been:

Duygu Akdevelioglu
Assistant Professor

"I think for me, seeing my mom so proud of me on my Ph.D. graduation day! Seeing the happiness on her face is my biggest achievement!"


Lisa Boice, MBA, JD
Assistant Dean of Student Services

"Nothing is more important in higher education than seeing students walk across the stage at commencement. I am most proud when I see a student that I helped achieve that goal. Whether it is a student who changed into a business program from another major or a student who was struggling academically that I helped find their path to academic success. It makes my heart happy to shake their hand and hug them as they realize their dream."

Jerrie Hsieh
Associate Professor & Graduate Program Director

"Hotel housekeepers have a physically demanding job that entails repetitive movement. Many suffer severe physical pain or work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Throughout my career as a researcher focusing on hospitality employees’ occupational health, I have been passionate about finding solutions to reduce the work-induced body pain of hotel housekeepers.

I recently conducted a quasi-experimental study among a group of hotel housekeepers at the RIT Inn and Conference Center that introduced a daily foam-rolling group exercise to the housekeepers. My research team and I were proud that we were able to overcome several obstacles during the planning, execution, and completion of this 3-month study. By the end of the study, we found significant improvement in range of motion all over the bodies of the housekeepers and decreased pain.

There is little I find more rewarding than seeing my research improve the health of hospitality employees and making an impact on other people’s lives."

Milena Kužnin (RIT Croatia)
Lecturer / Predavač, ESD Chapter Adviser

"My biggest professional achievement is being awarded two times for Faculty Teaching Excellence (once as junior faculty and second time as senior faculty)."


Melissa Masline, '13 (psychology), MS
Undergraduate Academic Advisor

"My proudest moment surrounds my education. As a high school senior, I was told I wasn’t cut out for college by my guidance counselor because I had done quite poorly on my SATs multiple times. I didn’t let this stop me from pursuing my educational dreams, so I applied to RIT, which was both my dream and my reach school. To everyone’s surprise I was accepted! I not only ended up graduating from RIT, but also went on to get my master’s degree.

Six years after graduating high school, I graduated with a master’s in science when most told me I couldn’t be successful in college. Now I hold the highest degree of anyone in my family. Without my experience as an undergrad, I never would have found my passion for working in higher education."

Hillary McCormick, MS
Assistant Director of Student Services and Global Education

"I moved to Germany as an exchange student at 18 with no knowledge of the language. I had to learn through full immersion. This trial by fire humbled me and made me realize that I am braver than I thought, which has always been on my mind as I move through my life both personally and professionally."


Molly McGowan
Lecturer and Director of The Leadership Academy at Saunders

"My greatest achievement is a combination of many efforts. These involve completing my Ph.D. to be the best I can be at a job I love while still being a fully present mother, wife, daughter, sister, and friend. I continue to stay true to myself, my faith, and my values while not being perfect and making mistakes. Still, I continue to persist and teach my children the importance of serving and caring for others in our community."

Joy Olabisi
Associate Professor

"One of my most memorable and proudest moments is completing the Chicago Marathon in 2007. Preparing for and accomplishing this feat taught me a lot about dedication, pushing through disappointments, sustained motivation, and many other valuable lessons that I have been able to apply to my professional and personal life over the years. These days, I strive to balance raising three strong girls in an instructive and positive, yet exploratory way, while continuing my professional endeavors and community engagement. I often draw from that same focus and mindset that was instrumental in finishing the race!"

Olivia Rotondo
Marketing Specialist

"My proudest accomplishment outside of graduating cum laude was completing my 200-hour yoga teacher training. Throughout the program, I learned a lot about myself and how to effectively use my voice for change."


Peggy Tirrell
Senior Associate Director of Graduate Business Programs and Admissions

"Six months after having gone through lung resection surgery and several months of only being cleared to walk and lift light weights, I participated in a Power Lifting meet and beat my personal best for the deadlift at 200 pounds. It reminded me of the saying, “If you think you can, you can. If you think you can’t, you’re right.” I believed in myself and the power to go after a goal that seemed impossible.  This sure surprised my doctor when I told him at my six-month post-surgery appointment!"

Anne Zachmeyer, MS
Academic Advisor

"My two kids are my proudest achievement. I love my job but when I was working while they were growing up there was always that doubt that I was not giving them all that they needed. Over the years, they have told me how much they appreciate all that we gave them and now I can just sit back and watch them grow and flourish! One can have the best of both worlds. It’s all about balance."


Saunders College would like to thank all faculty and staff members for their contributions in making Saunders what it is today.