2021 Best & Brightest Business Major: Zackary Hajjar, Fordham University (Gabelli)

Zackary Hajjar

Fordham University, Gabelli School of Business

Working hard, laughing hard. Trying to help others. Kindness is everything to me. General enthusiast.”

Fun fact about yourself: I once took pictures for David Copperfield, and he liked them.

Hometown: Brooklyn, NY

High School: Staten Island Technical High School

Major: Global Business and Economics

Minor: N/A

Favorite Business Course: Global Investments

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College: Matteo Ricci Seminar, Fordham Career Ambassadors, Fordham University Emerging Leaders (FUEL), Dean’s Council, Gabelli Annual Scholarship 2018-2020

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • JPMorgan Chase, New York NY, Credit Trading Summer Analyst
  • Maxim Group, New York NY, Merchant Capital Fall Analyst
  • GFI Securities, New York NY, Summer Brokerage Intern
  • Wisnik Career Enterprises, New York NY, HR and Recruiting Intern
  • Elevate Education, New York NY, Presenter

Where will you be working after graduation? JPMorgan Chase, Credit Trading Analyst

What company do you admire most? Burt’s Bees. The conversation on environmental conservation has gained a great deal of traction in recent years and I believe more should have been done earlier, before it was popular to do so. However, I admire Burt’s Bees because of their commitments to zero waste, energy efficiency, and natural ingredients in their products. I have used them myself for years and will be a lifetime user.

Who is your favorite professor? Jim McCann. There have been other individuals in the Fordham family who have given me a lot of attention and help along the way, but Professor McCann stands out in every sense by not only matching the initiative that I showed, but going above and beyond the call of duty to help me explore my interest in global markets and coach me through the process. We used to chat and eat lunch together frequently, and he (along with Fr Vin) have been my biggest advocates at Fordham. He is an exceptional professor and an exceptional human being.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? You can be successful by being yourself. For the longest time I feared I would need to change my nature, or at least what I showed of myself to others, to conform in the world of finance. That couldn’t be farther from the truth.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? Learning what you like and don’t like is more than half the battle. That happens from reaching out to as many individuals as possible in fields that you might be interested in and asking questions. It’s also how you build an incredible network.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? Markets are less efficient than I thought. Gamestop stock is one example that has garnered media attention when many other stories before it have not. Where there is inefficiency, there is room for opportunity.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? Landing the internship at JPMorgan last summer was massive. It was the culmination of working harder than I ever had before for a long, long stretch of time – thinking about it every day and pushing myself in ways I never had before. Getting that call that I had earned a spot left me feeling elated.

Which classmate do you most admire? Dante Mayeno (Junior at Gabelli LC). His work ethic and determination inspires me to keep going when I feel discouraged at times. He is beyond intelligent, quick to offer help, and a genuine person. I have only the highest respect for him. He also happens to be a pleasure to live with, and the best roommate I ever had.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? My parents. I couldn’t have focused so intently on my studies and work if they weren’t by my side supporting me with everything else going on in my life. No matter what I chose to do, they gave me their blessing and helped me in every way imaginable.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list?

Run Investment Grade Credit Trading at JPMorgan

Become a teacher of some sort, going back to help inner city kids again

What are your hobbies? Classical Music, Soccer (Unfortunately an Arsenal Fan), Chess, Calculus

What made Zackary such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2021?

“Zackary Hajjar is a great leader and a valuable member of the Class of 2021. I had the privilege of having Zack as a student in two of my finance classes and he stands out in my mind not merely because of his academic excellence, but because of his personal ethics and character.  He is propelled by his intellectual inquisitiveness, and his passion for knowledge and natural inquisitive nature is an innate trait.

Zack is a natural, compassionate leader, exemplified by his ability to achieve full respect from his peers. He raised the level of all around him and his enthusiasm for anything finance was contagious, sparking many great classroom debates. His leadership extends beyond the classroom, where Zack embraced a variety of leadership activities within the Global Finance program at the school as well.

Zack is passionate for his chosen career path, accepting a position at JPMorgan Chase in the firm’s sales and trading group. He will undoubtedly be a tremendous leader and asset for the firm. His passion for learning continues, as Zack will sit for the CFA Level I exam in his final semester.

I am confident that Zack will continue to excel and will have a very successful and fulfilling career following graduation.”

James H. McCann
Advanced Lecturer, Finance and Business Economics


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