Building Your BossBabe Support Group
January 14, 2019 by Susan Fiorentino
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Post college, finding a supportive group that fit my professional needs was difficult for me to find. I attended a very small college, where all my social and support circles where in one bubble. When I needed help with a paper or advice on applying for internships, my advisor and the Career Development Office was an email or quick walk to campus. I realized that finding support for my big dreams was going to take more than staying in my small bubble because that comfort no longer existed. It has been almost 7 (!!!) years since I graduated from Manhattan College and following these five steps has (over time) helped me get through some difficult personal and professional times.
My hometown friends and college friends were in the same position as me. We were (and still are) trying to find our place in the professional world. We kept in touch for a while but after some time, some friendships just fall apart. This could be simply because of location or interests. Luckily, I have an extremely supportive family who always supported my goals. Friends will slip in and out of your life but family (hopefully) will be in your corner to always support you.
During college, I had an injury that forced me to give up one of my favorite things, cheerleading. Working out was put in the back of my mind after that. After being so tired all the time and feeling unmotivated applying to jobs, I thought working out again could help me. Playing sports my whole life, I knew group fitness was more of a fit for me for long term results versus a regular gym. I stumbled across Kettlebellas and have been hooked ever since. For the past five years, I have been taking classes there sometimes 5 times a week with three of the best trainers and supportive group of women. Being around supportive women is very difficult to find, but this place has saved me so many times from doubting myself, body image issues, and other things that come up day to day. It didn’t take long, I noticed the more I committed myself to getting to the gym, the better I felt and looked. When I am mentally fit, I perform better at work, strive better personally, and am more motivated to handle my busy schedule. It may take time, but finding a supportive fitness group (in person or an online community) will have a huge benefit to helping you complete your goals.
While studying at Manhattan College, I knew I wanted to be a part of the non-profit world. I grew up and live in Staten Island, which is a very tight knit community. It is a small community with an even smaller and overlapping network in the non-profit field. In fundraising, there is a strong emphasis on relationship building so that is something that even today, still sticks with me. Even though I have had a few jobs since graduating, I still keep in touch with volunteers and/or former co-workers. Relationships are ever evolving and we have been able to help each other reach our goals even after we parted ways at other jobs. Changing jobs in a small community, but in the same field, taught me some valuable lessons such as not building bridges and keeping positive even in difficult work conditions.
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Susan Fiorentino is from Staten Island, New York and is currently a Development Associate at Staten Island Academy. She also coaches two cheerleading teams and is a member of the Young Professionals Group for The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation. Susan enjoys taking group classes at KettleBellas, going to Jets games, and working on building her brand- Bay Resilient Communications.
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Fiorentino, Susan [MC1974]
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