Returning to Her Roots Leads to Great Reward

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How does a certified public accountant go from working in audit and tax to investing $150 million as a corporate money manager to market research and strategic planning? It’s a long and winding road!

MaryAnn Monforte was a jet-setter, one might say. Just prior to receiving the opportunity to teach an introductory class at the Whitman School, she was traveling every week all over the United States and Europe as a software sales engineer. She frequently presented to Fortune 100 chief financial officers and helped clients understand and configure their software needs.

“My MBA really opened the door to so many opportunities; tech was hot back then!” said Monforte. “But despite the opportunities in sales and my work helping companies adjust strategies as they became public, I was starting to feel like I wanted to be closer to home.”

That’s when her friend and now colleague, Randy Elder, a professor of accounting at Whitman, told her about an opportunity to teach at Whitman.

“He told me it was a way in the door to see if I really enjoyed teaching,” said Monforte. And she did.

After teaching some accounting classes, she was offered a contract for a full-time position in fall 2008, and she has never looked back.

“I have loved all the things I’ve done but this is the most rewarding job,” said Monforte. “It’s invigorating to be around 18 to 25-year-olds 24/7.”

When she says 24/7, she means it. Not only does Monforte teach during the day, but she is also a professor in the newest Accounting@Syracuse online masters degree program, teaching in what she calls “a phenomenal format for online learning.”

Plus, she’s the faculty advisor for the award-winning Delta Sigma Pi chapter at Syracuse University, mentoring the students through professional activities and events. Her work led the chapter to the status of “Most Improved Chapter,” recognition it received at the Grand Chapter Congress.

In addition to her dedication to students, Monforte also participates in various committees, including the Professor of Practice Committee, which recently developed a career progression for professors of practice at Whitman, including all the policies, procedures and matrix guidelines.

Her energy is boundless and her commitment to the Whitman School is demonstrated in all she does but she still finds time for her family. She works as interim vice president and treasurer for her family business and has five children.

Kerri Howell

Kerri is director of communications and media relations for the Whitman School. She is responsible for managing all internal and external communications with students, faculty, staff, alumni, members of the business community and other key stakeholders.After receiving her B.A. from State University of New York at Geneseo, she went on to earn her M.S. in communications management from Syracuse’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, where she has served as an adjunct professor in the public relations department since 2004.
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