Empowering Women to Elevate the World

Lisa Mascolo ’82 is opening doors for a new generation of women at Stevens.

It might sound ironic that an ambitious young woman applied to a university that had gone co-ed only seven years before, but that's the story of how Lisa Mascolo attended Stevens, used her education to build a successful career, and is now giving back to her alma mater.

The first undergraduate female students enrolled with the Class of 1975, though Stevens had admitted female graduate students for decades prior. Lisa enrolled just three years after that first class graduated. "When we went in,” she remembers, “our class was something like 400 people, and maybe 15 of us were women."

Even with that ratio, Lisa chose Stevens because she knew it would give her an excellent education. "I always made a distinction in my own mind, having nothing to do with anyone else, that I wanted a career, not just a job. My intent, this being the late ’70s, was certainly as a woman to support myself. I wanted to go to a school where I thought I was going to be able to do that. After I did the analysis, and after I visited, I just had to go to Stevens."

After she graduated, Lisa embarked on a successful career, one that has taken her to Washington DC, where she is an expert on consulting for government agencies regarding systems integration, technology, business development and other fields. She spent several years as an executive with Accenture, and in March 2016 she started a new role as managing director of IBM’s global services group in Washington.

Lisa often has to solve problems, and to do so she relies on her Stevens training. "For me, the Stevens education was ahead of its time, especially with systems planning and management. It's about the deconstruction of issues and problems, and understanding the end state and figuring out how to get there. It really is thrilling to solve problems."

Lisa serves as a university trustee, and she has given to multiple projects, including the Business and Technology Leadership Fund and the Stevens Historic Preservation Fund. At the 2018 Stevens Awards Gala, Lisa received the Distinguished Alumni Award in Business and Finance.

She has also supported the Lore El Center for Women’s Leadership, an on-campus housing program for women at Stevens. Even though she attended Stevens before the house opened, Lisa is happy she can now contribute to its success and benefit a new generation of women. “The Lore El Center is about supporting women at Stevens, helping them take the best advantage of a Stevens education and enabling them to help solve the world's most complex problems. I'm passionate about the value of education, and I'm passionate about the value of diversity at the head table. I believe strongly that the more women we have in industry and public service who understand the value of leveraging technology and business to solve the world's most complex problems, the better off the world will be.”