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Joseph Nesi: From Corporate America into the Classroom

Joseph Nesi

Joseph Nesi

For 20 years, Joseph Nesi was immersed in corporate America. “I was a financial controller in a business unit that was being phased out in a corporate reorganization,” he said. “When thinking about my next move, I thought, let me try it on my own.”

So his sole proprietorship was born, providing accounting, tax and business advice to individuals and small businesses.

“That was going along nicely,” he said. “But one day, I was in a meeting with a client interested in creating a startup company. He brought some colleagues. When my presentation was done, one of them said, ‘You did an excellent job. Have you ever thought about teaching?’ That stuck with me.”

So Professor Nesi went to the Adjunct Faculty Fair and met with Rich Ellison, the chair of Accounting and Legal Studies at the time.

Professor Nesi’s first class was Financial Accounting.

“I was off and running,” he said. “Next thing I know I’m a college professor and I really like it. It was very fulfilling.”

He learned from Ed Ruhno, a longtime adjunct active in the Adjunct Faculty Council, who acted as a mentor. He sat in on Professor Nesi’s classes and helped develop his teaching skills.

So when a full-time position opened in the department, it didn’t take him long to apply.

“I was ready to begin the next chapter of my career,” he said. “I enjoy the interaction with the students and the support from colleagues. CELT (the Center for Enrichment of Learning and Teaching) workshops and mentors have been a big help. There’s a great formula for success here.”

He revels in his students’ success, noting with pride as they go on to four-year schools and later into the profession.

“For me, that’s what it’s about – seeing the light bulb go on,” he said.

Professor Nesi is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the New Jersey State Society of Certified Public Accountants. He is also a board member of an organization close to his heart: Community Action Reaches Everyone, a nonprofit that assists Edison residents in its school system with socio-economic hardships. The group provides assistance for those families in need and runs an afterschool reading program.