Business Students Take Top Three Places in CT at Microsoft Championship

In fall 2020, Certiport held its annual Microsoft Excel category state level test for students with an opportunity to go to Florida in June for the National Championship. Sacred Heart University students took the top three scores, and senior Emily Crispino, who scored the highest in Connecticut, will be on that flight to Orlando.

“I’m so excited to go and can only hope that I do well down there,” said Crispino.

Alongside Crispino, senior Allan Zilnicki came in second, and senior Nick Fierro got third place; a strong representation for the Pioneers.

“Finding out that I got second place in the state was something I couldn’t even imagine, it was really sick,” said Zilnicki.

Prof. Bridget M. Lyons D.P.S., professor of finance in the Jack Welch College of Business and Technology (JWCBT), worked with all three students last semester, leading up to the test they all scored so highly on.

“Prof. Lyons deserves a lot of credit for this,” said Fierro. “She’s an excellent teacher and mentor, and this has a lot to say about the work ethic of the students at this school.”

“Emily, Allan and Nick are very strong students who recognize the importance of technical skills and worked hard to master Excel,” said Lyons.

Crispino, Zilnicki and Fierro all worked alongside Lyons and took the test using Microsoft Excel techniques learned in class and from previous experience. They also used GMetrix, which is a testing software.

“The more you know, the more efficient and easier it gets,” said Zilnicki.

Many individuals, faculty, staff and students played a part in making this happen, including Kyle P. Savino, who is a lead teacher’s assistant. Savino runs workshops and administers tests for students who want to earn an advanced certification.

“I am extremely proud of the three students and love the attention that it is getting because the Excel program that we have at Sacred Heart is truly unique,” said Savino.

Sacred Heart spends ample time preparing students for future opportunities like this one.

“Sacred Heart puts a lot of time and effort into getting their students ready for an exam like this, providing them with the tools to succeed, and the top three scores being from Sacred Heart is awesome,” said Crispino.

Crispino is set to head to Florida in June for the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) 2021 National Championship. The winner receives $3,000, both a trophy and medal of achievement, a winner’s certificate and an all-expenses paid trip to MOS 2021 World Championship. The World Championship will take place in Orlando in August.

“We wish her luck and are confident she will represent us well,” said Lyons.

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