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Baruch women are honored at the ‘Phenomenal Women’s Awards’

Photo courtesy of ABC13 Houston


WHM Awards Ceremony

The winners are honored for their service and impact to the Baruch community.

As Women’s History Month came to an end, the WHM Planning Committee and the Office of Student Life celebrated the visionary women of Baruch College by hosting the “Phenomenal Women’s Awards” ceremony on March 26.

The purpose of the ceremony was to honor the extraordinary, powerful leadership exhibited by the women of Baruch College from the past, present and future. It was hosted by Assistant Director of Student Activities Crystal Tejada.

The first honoree was an alumna, Fatima Shama, who is the executive director of The Fresh Air Fund, a nonprofit agency that provides free summer experiences to New York City children from low-income communities through summer camps and family programs in rural and suburban communities across 13 states.

Shama completed her master’s degree in public administration from Baruch’s School of Public Affairs Executive Program.

“I am very delighted to be selected,” Shama said. “This was a place that was very much at the intersection of a really important chapter for me professionally. It was very special for me to come back, I am very nostalgic.”

“It’s a chance to reflect on who I learned from,” Shama said. “And how I need to make sure I pass that forward to the future generations to come.”

After the first honoree, a performance by Jade Zabric followed. She sang as she played her acoustic guitar and the audience was in awe.

The second honoree was a current staff member, Jael Amador, who is a New York state licensed psychologist who provides individual therapy, supervision and outreach services at the Baruch Counseling Center.

Amador described her own work as clinical, but integrating cognitive behavioral therapy with feminist and multicultural theory to treat a wide range of issues.

Amador earned her doctorate degree from Loma Linda University, where she specialized in sociocultural behavioral health.Her research explores the impact of culture on psychological processes and behavior.

“This was a nice surprise, I didn’t expect it and it felt really good to hear about it,” said Amador. “Women’s History Month is the time to recognize the work that women are doing here in particular at Baruch and in the whole nation, in the world. I am really happy that Baruch took a whole month to celebrate it.” After the second honoree, The Blue Notes performed several songs.

The last honoree was a student who has been contributing a lot to the Baruch community — Annmarie Gajdos. Gajdos is a pre-law student pursuing a double major in computer information systems and management of musical enterprises.

She serves on the executive board of several campus clubs, including AIESEC and the Pre-Law Society, while holding various positions in the Undergraduate Student Government, Hillel, WiTNY and Women in Business. She is also a Macaulay Honors student.

She wants to advocate for the welfare of oppressed people and to stimulate gender equality through working as an international human rights lawyer.

“I feel so excited, it is a real honor to be a part of these phenomenal women,” said Gajdos. “Be true to yourself, don’t let anyone ever tell you you can’t do something, don’t let anybody tell you you are not good enough because of your gender, race or socioeconomic status.”

There was honorable mentioning of students who took leadership roles in club life and those who are contributing back to the Baruch community.

Tejada gave her closing remarks and ended by thanking the amazing, empowering women of Baruch.

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