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Zicklin Students Compete in Intercollegiate Figure-Skating Contest

May 1, 2024

Two Zicklin School of Business students have created Baruch College’s very first figure-skating team by competing in the Northeast Intercollegiate U.S. Figure Skating competition in March.   

Two women, Laura Gressin and Elizabeth Direktor, in blue dresses and ice skates standing on a platform

Gressin (left) and Direktor (right)

Accounting student Elizabeth Direktor (BBA, ’27), a freshman, enrolled Baruch as an official team in U.S. Figure Skating and initially represented it alone. When graduate student Laura Gressin (MBA, ’24), also a figure skater, heard about Elizabeth’s feat, she decided to join the team: “I wanted to support her and support our school, so I signed up.”  

“We are small but mighty,” Laura notes, reporting that Elizabeth came in third in her category (Gold Solo Pattern Dance), while Laura came in seventh in hers (High Beginner Women Excel). “Some of the other teams had more than 16 members, so we did pretty darn well,” she adds. “I’m proud of what we accomplished.” 

Both women say they apply lessons from figure skating to their business careers. “Figure skating means believing in yourself even when you feel like giving up,” Laura says. “You receive constant feedback while handling nerves and pressure, you show confidence, and you fake it ’til you make it.”

Elizabeth agrees. “I learned how to push past failures and learn from them how to be better,” she offers. “These values are crucial in business because failure is a concept you’ll encounter many times no matter what career you go into. By learning how to get back up and use your mistakes as motivation to progress further in your career, it makes you a more professional and well-rounded employee.”  

“Skating has changed my life by making me mentally and physically stronger,” Laura concludes. “Representing my school in the sport I love will forever be the highlight of my graduate experience.”  

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