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Alumnus Ahern always on the run

Liam Ahern’s mission to help students started with a sprint during an interview to become a Watson peer adviser at the end of his freshman year. He continued sprinting while earning his MBA.

“I was ambitious at the end of my freshman year,” he says. “I had just gotten the (Oneida) RA job. I was told I was being offered the (Watson) job, but I had to make sure I had enough for it. I literally ran from the office to my resident director’s assistant and asked if I could have 10-12 hours a week for Watson. So I ran back and said I could do it. That’s how I got the job.”

A year later, the computer science and math major became the head peer adviser at Watson, where he managed schedules, helped lead meetings and answered academic questions such as which classes should be taken.

“I like helping people,” says Ahern, from Carmel in Putnam County. “It’s satisfying when someone comes to you with a question and you have the answer.”

Ahern spent three years as a resident assistant in College-in-the-Woods’ Oneida Hall. He also lived in the residence hall during his freshman year.

Oneida Resident Director Meghan Hinckley-Forcier says Ahern did everything from planning programs to getting people excited about Residential Life events to being sure to wish his fellow students a happy birthday.

“He just did it all,” she says. “He is so genuine and considerate of others.”

Sharon Santobuono, associate director of the Watson School advising office, also praised Ahern’s work.

“Liam is one of the kindest students I have ever known,” she says. “He is a quiet motivator and did an exceptional job as our lead peer. Liam underestimates his impact on others and will always be remembered for his Irish spirit.”

Ahern continued at Binghamton through the 4+1 fast track, a program he says he knew he wanted to apply to when he was a freshman. He earned his MBA in management with a concentration in finance and retired from Oneida Hall service to experience graduate-student life off campus at University Plaza.

“I’m had a lot of options when I graduated with computer science, math, management and finance,” he says. “That gave me four different opportunities.”

“I knew from my first day here that it was going to be a good experience,” he says. “But it turned out to be a better experience and I learned more than I thought I would – not just academically, but socially too.”

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Last Updated: 7/19/12