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She’s scored on the basketball court as a Highlander guard and now Martin Tuchman School of Management (MTSM) graduating senior Jordan Ireland has realized her college-best achievement: completing MTSM’s B.S./M.S five-year program in just four years. Ireland will receive a bachelor’s in business with a concentration in accounting, as well as a master’s in management with a concentration in finance, at NJIT’s upcoming commencement ceremony.

“It was rough. A lot of classes, a lot of time spent studying, getting through group projects, tests, exams,” shared Ireland on a Friday morning in NJIT’s Wellness and Events Center (WEC), then explaining how she took classes every summer and additional courses during the semesters to finish early. “At the end of the day I’m glad I did that, because it really set me apart.”

Armed with her degrees, she’ll join CohnReznick this July, after interning at the global accounting, tax and advisory firm last summer. She was a CFO advisory intern in the risk and business department, splitting her time between corporate performance management and revenue recognition; for the former she became certified in an open-source cloud accounting software, and for the latter she helped ensure that property leases met newly released accounting standards. She’ll return to CohnReznick’s Manhattan office and the same group for her full-time position, which the company offered her back in August.

“The last day of my internship, they actually told me, ‘we’d love to bring you back and we’re extending an offer,’” recalled Ireland, who was thrilled to have a job locked in before beginning her senior year. “It was a whole weight off my shoulder.”

Surprisingly, Ireland was not a fan of math growing up in Garnet Valley, Pa., the oldest of three girls. But by the time she got to high school, her viewpoint changed and she knew she wanted to pursue a career in business, in Manhattan. NJIT’s strong management program, proximity to New York City and offer of a basketball scholarship — Ireland has played the game since she was 6 — sealed the deal for her to attend the university.

Jordan Ireland playing basketball for NJIT

As #11 on NJIT’s Division I women’s basketball team, she has appeared in nearly every game, scoring, assisting and rebounding. She says she’s enjoyed the camaraderie with her teammates, whom she calls “my sisters for four years.” And she has high praise for the WEC, where she is happy to have had the opportunity to play.

“It was awesome [playing on the new court],” she said. “This facility is beautiful. I got to see this building physically being built. … This campus is growing and improving so much.”

It’s remarkable that Ireland was able to fast-track her higher education, given the stretches of time she’s been off campus for away games and the many extracurricular activities she’s been involved in. She’s served as chair of MTSM’s Dean’s Executive Student Leadership Council, treasurer of its Accounting Club and member of its Investment Club. She’s also overseen use of the Bloomberg terminals in the school’s Ray Cassetta Financial Analysis Lab, helped students train and become certified in Salesforce in the Business Analysis Lab, and coordinated events and workshops for both facilities.

In addition, she’s been the “right hand” to Executive Director of Development Billy McDermott in promoting, implementing, and teaching and recruiting for MTSM’s summertime Financial Literacy Camp. “It’s a lot of paperwork all the time,” she said with a laugh. “But it’s a lot of fun. The kids are great. They really do learn a lot.”

Leaving all of this and MTSM behind will be bittersweet for Ireland, but she’s excited about life after NJIT and fulfilling a long-held dream: “Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted to move into New York. I didn’t think it was possible and here I am. … I’m ready for the real world [and starting] my next chapter.”

Jordan Ireland holding the MTSM gonfalon