Generation Orange Alum Lee Goldberg Proves Outreach Is for Everyone
January 30, 2012
As a Generation Orange alumnus—an SU graduate of the past 10 years—Lee Goldberg ’06 understands that although New York City has a lot to offer new grads, “it can be totally overwhelming at the same time.” That knowledge was the inspiration behind his recent gift to the Orange Metro Fund, a fund created to support student immersion programs and other activities in the New York metro area.
Because his $5,000 gift was designated to the Orange Metro Fund, it was matched dollar-for-dollar by the Fisher Challenge, a generous challenge gift from Syracuse University trustee and New York City resident Winston Fisher ’96. Best of all, the gift—doubled to $10,000—has already made an impact. It helped fund the Martin J. Whitman School of Management’s 2012 Marketing Career Exploration trip to NYC.
Now in its fifth year, the annual Marketing Career Exploration trip is designed to expose students to the many facets of the fast-paced marketing industry. During the three-day trip, New York City becomes a “marketing laboratory,” with marketing executives—many of whom are SU alumni—opening up their offices to host Whitman students and offering their insights about future careers.
Goldberg, a graduate of the Whitman School with a bachelor’s degree in entrepreneurship and emerging enterprises, found that the idea of being a mentor of sorts to current students was really appealing. “I want our students to know that they have an established support system out in the real world that is ready, winning, and able to support them,” he says. “More specifically, I wanted to show the students that there is indeed life after a marketing and entrepreneurship degree.”
The 2012 trip, which was January 1–4, exposed 28 marketing majors to such diverse companies as Turner Broadcasting, News America Marketing, Durst-Fetner Residential, Draftfcb, Macy’s, and Goldberg’s own firm, the interactive agency Vector Marketing Group, where he is co-founder and president.
“No other business school can boast the same level of alumni support and enthusiasm that Whitman enjoys in New York,” says E. Scott Lathrop, clinical professor of marketing practice and one of the coordinators of the Marketing Career Exploration trip. “Our visits always spark dynamic classroom discussions among our students when we return to Whitman.”
While in NYC, students also attended an alumni networking reception sponsored by the Whitman Career Center and the WhitmanNYC, the Whitman Alumni Club of New York City. There, they were able to connect with other alums and gain firsthand knowledge about their intended careers.
Goldberg feels that New York City immersion programs are tremendously important for today’s students. “NYC is the epicenter of so many different paths of business and opportunity,” he explains. “Learning how to navigate the waters here is crucial to achieving your goals and objectives later in life.”
By sponsoring a portion of the Marketing Career Exploration trip, Goldberg also wanted to “show our students that alumni outreach and activity is for everyone. Even recent grads like me can and should get involved.” While he credits his time at SU with building the foundation for everything he’s achieved so far, Goldberg is finding that his post-graduation experience is in many ways even more rewarding. “It doesn’t take a lot of effort to really make a difference in the lives of students.”