“My night was derailed, on the studying front,” admits Foody, who was majoring in communication and media studies with a minor in business. She was friends with Marchese’s friend, who suggested the three study together. But there were more sparks than finals review that night.
Although Marchese liked Foody immediately, it wasn’t until after winter break that he asked her for her phone number so he could take her out on a date.
“I was taken aback,” says Foody, laughing at his old-fashioned approach. “That’s not how college kids do this!” But he actually called her by phone the next week. She followed the unwritten rules of dating by ignoring his call. Then he tried again. “I think I answered that one,” she says. “I had to!”
Marchese was interning at Pulse Capital Partners in Manhattan, so Foody took the Ram Van to Lincoln Center one night, and they went by cab to Sant Ambroeus in the West Village. Foody jokes that Marchese probably spent more than one of his internship paychecks on their meal. But “we have been pretty inseparable from that moment,” she says.
Inspired by Each Other
They discovered shared interests and backgrounds. Along with being career minded, both had attended Jesuit high schools before Fordham, which, Marchese says, showed them that “having an open mind and an open heart and working hard provides a meaningful and fulfilling life.”
Soon after they met, Foody, who had dreams of working in the fashion industry, landed a series of internships, including ones with Louis Vuitton and Marc Jacobs, where she currently works as an account executive. “We got to see each other grow and navigate New York job insanity and become sounding boards for each other through troubles and excitement,” Foody says.
“Seeing her drive and motivation, watching her pursue her dreams has been so fascinating and inspiring,” says Marchese, now a senior hedge fund analyst at Omers. “It’s a huge motivation to me to work harder as well.”
After graduating from Fordham, Marchese took an apartment in Manhattan while Foody finished up her studies. Eventually, they got a place together in the West Village, about a block away from the site of their first date.
Last December, a close call on a highway led Marchese to realize that it was time to ask Foody to marry him. He started saving. He worked with a jeweler to design a ring. And he considered where best to ask her.
“I wanted it to be meaningful and a surprise,” he says. “So I knew it had to be at the library.”
Under the ruse of taking the train to Westchester for his father’s birthday party, with a stop off on Arthur Avenue to pick up some pastries, he brought her onto the Fordham campus one recent rainy Saturday for a nostalgia tour. Ducking into Walsh Library, where his brother was hidden with a camera, he asked her: “What’s your favorite Fordham memory?”
“Meeting you at the library,” she replied.
“Maybe your favorite memory is right now,” he suggested. “Because I am going to propose to you.” He did, and she said yes.
Marchese says for him Fordham has always meant “community, hard work, and opportunity.”
“It showed me not to focus on what I can get from an institution or person but what I can give back,” he says. “And, ultimately, it meant love.”