Thanks to connections made at Fordham’s School of Professional and Continuing Studies, faculty and alumni are working together to renovate one of the busiest international airports in the country.
Those connections begin with Anthony Pastore, a Fordham faculty member who teaches construction project management courses in PCS’s Real Estate Institute (REI). Outside of the classroom, Pastore serves as a senior vice president at AECOM Tishman, a company that has managed construction for some of the world’s most iconic buildings, including One World Trade Center.
While teaching at Fordham, he met several students who left a deep impression on him, including Arthur Arbaje, a student in the master’s program in construction management, and Timothy Fazzinga, a student in the advanced certificate in construction management program. After they completed their programs this year, Pastore hired them to work on design and construction for the $9.5 billion renovation of JFK Airport Terminal 1.
The airport, which opened in 1948, currently has six terminals. Terminal 1 is the third oldest of the terminals. The revamped terminal, which is expected to be fully completed by 2030, will become the largest terminal at the international airport. It will expand its number of gates from 12 to 23, upgrade its technology and security, and add new amenities with a focus on sustainability.
A ‘Full Circle’ Moment Between a Professor and His Student
The team working on the terminal includes several members of the Fordham community, said Pastore. This year, he hired Arbaje and Fazzinga to work on the project as an assistant project manager and a project engineer, respectively. Pastore said his team has also worked with other Fordham REI graduates and students on the renovation, including Gian Maxino, PCS ’18, an analyst in risk and operations construction management; Yoselyn Torres, PCS ’20, previously an assistant project manager; and Anthony Diodato, PCS ’23, a 2022 summer intern.
‘Fordham Opened the Doors’
Fazzinga said he chose to study at Fordham’s Real Estate Institute because of its affordable, flexible, and comprehensive programs.
“My program helped me to understand how the industry and business is run,” said Fazzinga, who completed his advanced certificate in construction management this summer. “It pretty much covers every aspect: reading construction drawings and documents, project management, estimating and bidding, planning and scheduling, budgets and costs, and field operations.”
Like Pastore, he had previously worked as a carpenter, as well as an assistant project manager for another construction company. In October, he was hired by Pastore to work as a subconsultant for the airport renovation, where he assists managers with building the terminal’s roadways.
“There are a lot of great opportunities in New York,” said Fazzinga, 25, who lives in Somers, New York. “Fordham opened the doors to them.”
Looking for People with ‘That Same Drive’
Pastore said that his students in the Fordham Real Estate Institute remind him of his younger self. He began working in construction as a carpenter who didn’t know much about the industry, so he decided to take a certificate course at New York University’s School of Professional Studies. There, he met an instructor who also served as an AECOM Tishman executive and told him about the company’s projects.
“I thought, ‘Wow, this is pretty cool. I want to work on projects like that.’ So I sent my resume to Tishman and ended up getting an interview,” Pastore recalled. “When they asked me, ‘Why Tishman?’ I told them about the course I took at NYU and how I was inspired by the executive who taught my class.”
Pastore got the job. Now, more than a decade later, he can relate to his recent hires from Fordham.
“I remember my background, working through the trades, being a superintendent, and going to school in the evening, and I respect anyone who does the same. I’m always keeping an eye out for talent and people who have that same drive and interest in the construction industry,” Pastore said. “Now I’ve come full circle. It’s been great to provide that same opportunity that someone else had given me years ago.”