All Business Majors Into the Pool

By Cathy Rainone

It was always apparent to Alyssa Lubrino, a captain of the Baruch College women’s swimming and diving team, that a college sports team had its perks. After all, swimming has kept her in great physical shape, it taught her discipline, it made her feel confident and competitive in and out of the pool, and her team provided a sense of camaraderie on campus.

But Lubrino, a senior with a major in accounting and a minor in English, never thought swimming could also be instrumental in landing a coveted summer internship. Yet that’s exactly what happened when she interviewed at Morgan Stanley, a global financial-services firm.

“One of the first things they asked me during an interview was whether I can work as part of a team,” says Lubrino,  “and my answer was that as a team captain you have to deal with a lot of different personalities and you have to try to make everyone happy, be a role model. You take that attitude to the workplace.”

Lubrino took her take-charge attitude to Morgan Stanley where she was a summer analyst at the Internal Audit Operational Risks Department.

“I like numbers,” says Lubrino. “I was always good in math and I like the business world. When I was younger  I would always admire women in business suits on television.”

Although Lubrino spent the summer in a corporate environment, in college her competitive spirit has been focused on swimming, where she holds CUNY Athletic Conference records in the 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle events and in four relays.

A team captain since 20010, she led Baruch’s Bearcats to three CUNY AC Championships, and last March her relay team was first CUNYAC Women’s relay to attend the ECAC Championship at the Naval Academy. Lubrino received a Baruch’s Women’s Swimming Coaches Award in 2011, and in November of that year was named the CUNYAC/Hospital of Special Surgery Scholar Athlete of the Month. She also serves as a student athletic advisory committee representative to the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

The scholar athlete can’t imagine her academic career without swimming. “It’s opened a lot of doors for me,” says Lubrino. “I did it because I wanted to get that college experience, that sense of community since I can’t live on campus. I also learned that if I can win swimming matches I can also work hard and be successful in school.”

Lubrino, who has maintained a 3.8 GPA, is a member of Baruch’s Honors Program and has made the Dean’s List every semester since 2010.

Her swimming coach and mentor, Charles Lampasso, says Lubrino is a dedicated, hard-working scholar athlete who rarely misses practice. In 2009, the coaching staff chose her to lead the team because she has all the traits they were looking for in a captain.

“Dedicated, hard worker, disciplined, dependable, competitive, a leader in and out of the pool, mentally tough, knows how they deal with adversity — Alyssa exhibits all these traits and her maturity level has helped her attain them,” says Lampasso.

Alyssa Lubrino, above, in the pool and left, at Morgan Stanley in Manhattan where she was a summer analyst at the Internal Audit Operational Risks Department.

Wearing a beige pencil skirt, black blouse and black pumps, Lubrino looked like a business woman one summer day while on a lunch break at Morgan Stanley. Her attire was a sharp departure from her summer staple for the past 5 years — a bright swimsuit. Since 2007, Lubrino worked as a lifeguard, first at Rockaway Beach in Queens and then at Midland Beach on Staten Island, where she grew up and still lives.

She has been swimming since first grade when her dad started and coached the swimming team for her grammar school. She was a captain of a swimming team at the St. Joseph Hill Academy, a Catholic high school on Staten Island. Her senior year she won the 50-yard freestyle event at the Catholic high school championship. She thought that was good enough to try out for a college team.

During the January break in her first year at Baruch, she got up at 5 a.m. to commute for 90 minutes from Staten Island to Baruch to train from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., six days a week. The hard work paid off — she made the team.

Lubrino will graduate in December with a bachelor’s degree and then continue studying for another year for the Master’s CPA Program in Accounting. She’s not sure what area of accounting she’d like to pursue after school, but one thing is certain, she’ll never stop swimming.

“I want to explore and see what I can do,” says Lubrino. “I’m competitive by nature so I think I’d like to work in a corporation. I like auditing because it combines numbers and people. You have to talk to a lot of people to investigate cases, but you also have to be good at numbers.”