Alumni Spotlight

David Ceglia, MBA '11, Executive Vice President of Operations, Hotel Dieu Shaver Health and Rehabilitation Hospital


David completed his MBA at Niagara with a dual concentration in Strategic Management and Healthcare Administration. Few of the main factors that led to David's choice in NU is our AACSB accreditation, the flexible course offerings on weekends and weeknights tailored to a working professional’s schedule, and Niagara's unique campus culture that centers around our mission, vision, and values. 

When asked about any professors that really made an impact on him, David stated that Dr. Kristine Principe was one of the most influential professors he had the chance to work with, and had a significant impact on his career trajectory, pushing him to become the effective leader in the healthcare industry that he is today. Since completing his MBA, David’s career path has accelerated as he began various administrative, management, and director roles within his hospital's organization. This ultimately led him to his current position of Executive Vice President of Operations at Hotel Dieu Shaver Health and Rehabilitation Hospital in St. Catherines, ON. He continues to leverage the foundational expertise that Niagara’s MBA program provided, as he plans, develops, and implements strategic directions to propel healthcare and rehabilitation forward at his current position. 

David states that his most helpful takeaway from his MBA is that, “as an alumni, I experienced the power of Niagara University’s Mission and Values and found comfort in the fact that both were established on the foundation of Catholic and Vincentian traditions. I strongly encourage anyone who is contemplating this decision to proceed, as the return on this investment is invaluable.”

Amanda Dzielski, MBA '17, Annual Giving Manager, The Children's Hospital of Buffalo Foundation, Kaleida Health

Amanda pursued her MBA to transition her professional skills beyond her computer education background, which ultimately lead her into a highly successful career within healthcare. As a 30 under 30 recipient, Amanda uses her experiences from her program to communicate and work effectively within the community to provide crucial funding for children within Kaleida Healthcare network. The flexibility of the courses, her supportive faculty and her hands-on learning, drives her to the top of her field and continues to prove value to her career every day.   

She was attracted to the versatility that our MBA program offers, as well as the ease of credit transfers and scheduling classes. Overall Amanda proved to have chosen the best fit for her as our hands on program was able to push her in the right direction. She was able to secure a paid internship through Kaleida health and utilized aspects of class assignments and public speaking courses in order to flourish in her new role. This provided an opportunity for her to enter her current role as the Annual Giving Manager at the Children’s Hospital of Buffalo Foundation, Kaleida Health.

She was also able to make lifelong connections during her time at NU, specifically one of her favorite professors, Joe Winter from the accounting department. Amanda has made a point to ensure to stay connected with the network of young working professionals that she met during her time at NU. When asked about her time in the program, Amanda stated, “ This is not just a one track degree. It opens opportunities throughout so many industries and makes you more marketable. There is also a huge flexibility for working professionals who are looking to further their education. Don’t always go with what society tells you.” 

Zeau Ismail, MBA '11, Director Lead, Covid-19 Assessment Centers and Vaccine Clinic


Zeau knew Niagara was the right fit for him for several reasons such as our AACSB accreditation, the flexible schedule for working professionals including weeknight and weekend course offerings, and ultimately because of our Healthcare Administration concentration.

The Healthcare Administration program helped him to not only understand the foundation needed in his field, but also gave Zeau the confidence to take risks and successfully transition to a new organization from a front line clinician to an advisor. From his skills he built within our program along with his on the job work, he advanced his career to his current role of Director Lead. This new role included leading a team by establishing and maintaining relationships with internal and external stakeholders to develop and implement three Covid-19 Assessment Centers responsible for Covid-19 tests to the community. Once the vaccinations became available, Zeau was also responsible for leading a smooth and efficient operation of a Covid-19 Vaccination Clinic which included a Mass Vaccination Clinic that resulted in the vaccination of more than 250,000 people in the community. 

The small class sizes and amazing professors here at NU, specifically Dr. Kristine Principe, are what he favored most. Zeau worked closely with Dr. Principe as she teaches the major healthcare courses for our MBA program, such as MPH 663 Management and Policy in Healthcare Organizations which helped give him an overall better understanding and accelerated his development into a leadership position. 

Zeau is also a Certified Health Executive (CHE) with the Canadian College of Health Leaders (CCHL), a member of Kappa Gamma Pi (Niagara University Chapter), the National Graduate Honor Society for Catholic Colleges and Universities in Leadership (2011- present), and a member of the Alpha Alpha Beta Chapter (Niagara University) of the Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society in Education, (2021-present). Zeau is also currently obtaining his Ph.D. in Leadership and Policy at Niagara University. 

He stated his most helpful takeaway is the, “understanding and living by the mission of NU to be a principled business professional by learning, serving, and living with integrity and to live an exemplary life.”

Petrina Sciandra, MBA '20, Human Resource Manager, Empower


Petrina is an MBA graduate who has found real success in the business world. A strong deciding factor for her to attend NU, was the ability to maintain her full time position while pursuing her degree. It was important to her that she could continue her work and our course flexibility allowed her to do so, especially with the Saturday courses. 

Petrina, knew that she wanted to pursue human resources and this was the best fit not only with her personal connections to the university but the fact that professors were approachable and she could connect with them beyond the classroom to support her academic and professional goals. One of her favorite professors was Professor Joe Winter who helped her further understand the program and gave her the courage to get started right away. She began classes a week after speaking with him.

Her biggest takeaway from the program were the union based courses that are offered, teaching contracts and policies that she has to be familiar with and work with everyday for her current position as Resource Manager at Empower. Empower is a non profit organization that focuses on developmental disabilities. When asked about her time in the program, she stated, “I received a promotion after graduating! This degree has truly helped me get to the level of management that I needed to be for my current position. Not a lot of people have a higher level degree, be proud of your accomplishments!”

Morgan Marotta, '16, MBA '18