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New Alumni Kick-Off: a Rotman grad on the importance of staying connected

January 23, 2020

Portrait of Tony AulicinoThough it’s been twenty years since Tony Aulicino (MBA ’00) graduated from the Full-Time MBA program at Rotman, it feels like he never really left the School.

“Luckily, through all the career changes, travel and moves, at every place, I’ve managed to find Rotman alumni,” says Aulicino, who is currently serving as chief financial officer at CES Energy Solutions in Calgary.

Before taking on this role, Aulicino was managing director of investment banking at Scotiabank, where he often worked with other Rotman alumni and got to know fellow board member Dean Tiff Macklem. His work has taken him all over Canada and internationally, where he’s been pleasantly surprised to find himself working with other Rotman grads.

“New Rotman grads will soon learn that there are tons of ways to benefit from the Rotman experience.”

—Tony Aulicino, MBA ’00

“There is always a natural connection. When I meet people from Rotman, I know they’ve worked hard, know their stuff, and can tackle problems strategically,” he says. “It’s like we are cut from the same cloth and understand each other.”

There are several other benefits that come with being a part of the School’s extensive alumni community. Grads have access to peers and mentors across industries and around the world. As well, Rotman alumni are known for sharing valuable career advice with peers and helping them pursue interesting professional opportunities.

To introduce recent and prospective graduates to the network they will soon be joining, the School is hosting the New Alumni Kick-Off on February 1st. Attendees will get to know their peers from across the school. As well, Aulicino, who will be delivering a keynote speech, will discuss how graduates can stay connected to Rotman and how he’s benefited from the alumni network.

In the meantime, here are three quick things he wants new Rotman grads to know:

The Rotman community will stay with you

With convocation only six months away, many graduating students are likely excited about starting new careers but a bit anxious about leaving classmates, professors and the strong community they’ve found at Rotman.

“Don’t worry, there are plenty of ways to keep a connection to the School,” says Aulicino.

“Throughout my career, I’ve been able to keep in touch with Rotman informally, through business connections and work,” he says.

Having the shared experience of the Rotman MBA is an easy way to start a conversation. Luckily, there’s a commitment among grads to help one another by sharing advice and insights.

“In the long run, it’s really helped me cement relationships, which became increasingly important as I advanced in my career and entered senior management levels.”

Experienced grads want to help you

New grads: don’t be shy about asking for advice.

“I think many students and new grads are surprised to learn that a big priority for many senior leaders is helping younger people with a lot of promise reach their potential and gain satisfaction professionally,” says Aulicino.

Aulicino has served as a mentor in the School’s mentorship program, spoken at Rotman events, and met with applicants and prospective students considering the MBA at Rotman. He believes other grads with experience to share should consider similar volunteer opportunities at the School.

“Helping younger people succeed has been the real reward. And I’m grateful for the opportunity to assist them with this.”

Be excited about this next phase.

As the New Alumni Kick-Off — and convocation — approaches, Aulicino can’t help but be excited for the upcoming group of graduates. With the speed at which technology is advancing and changing, there are bound to be interesting opportunities, and with a Rotman education, grads will be prepared to tackle them.

“I’m excited for these students,” says Aulicino. “I want them to see the paths open to them. They will soon learn that there are tons of ways to benefit from the Rotman experience long after they leave the School.”

Written by Rebecca Cheung | More Student Stories »

New Alumni Kick-Off

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