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Jose Collazo ’10

Alumni Success Story
picture of Jose Collazo

Bank President and Military Veteran Thankful to RCC

Jose Collazo ’10 has sound advice for students who lack focus in their career pursuits or hesitate to make a long-term commitment to achieve their goals.

“It’s like the stock market,” says Collazo, President and Chief Operating Officer at NorthEast Community Bank in White Plains, NY. “It’s important not to base your life on short-term movements. You need to take a longer view – five, six, 10 years from now. A single step becomes two, you keep plugging away, moving forward, and before you know it, you are where you want to be.”

Collazo has followed that formula to career success in the banking industry. He joined NorthEast Community Bank fresh out of the US Army National Guard in 1985 and worked his way up from bank teller and data operator. Collazo served as Chief Information Officer for 11 years before becoming COO in 2012 and President in 2013. He oversees operations at the bank’s eight branch locations, its wealth management division and its lending services.

As an adult learner, Collazo benefited from RCC’s multifaceted offerings. He earned an AS in Computer Information Systems in 2010, broadening his understanding of Information Technology and honing his time management skills. He then took advantage of a program to obtain a BBA from SUNY Cobleskill on the RCC campus, capitalizing on RCC’s close proximity to his Spring Valley home and the convenience of Saturday classes. Collazo also received an MBA from SUNY Empire State College in 2014.

“Before RCC, I had a lot of hands-on experience but no formal college education in my field,” says Collazo. “Without the foundation of an RCC education, I would not have been able to reach the position I am in today.”

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