Anthony Napoli

"Washington, D.C., is one of the most exciting and stimulating cities to live in," says RIT/NTID alumnus Anthony Napoli. "Things are happening here 24/7. Networking is huge. I've met so many people through the many networking events and professional interactions that happen here."

The Rochester native, who earned a bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice and a diploma in Management Development at RIT in 2001, went on to earn a master's degree in Public Administration from American University in Washington.

As a case manager in the Civil Rights Office of the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, Napoli conducts compliance reviews, jurisdictional reviews, investigation of discrimination complaints, Freedom of Information Act requests and recommends regulation changes.

"Aside from my primary duties, I advocate for the hiring of deaf and hard-of-hearing people, including applicants with disabilities, and work with government employers on the hiring process," he says. "I'm involved with a group called Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing in Government, and I've presented at national conference workshops and trainings, and am the reasonable accommodations coordinator at this year's national training conference hosted by DHHIG. I also serve on a board that votes on nominees and provides awards to EPA managers and employees for exceptional service."

When asked to give advice to college students, Napoli is quick to reply.

"College life is all about choices and balancing it all for your personal growth," he says, "but more importantly, giving back. I believe it is more important to develop strong interpersonal skills than to focus heavily on getting a perfect average and never meeting people or getting involved. Seek out volunteer opportunities. Get involved in groups on campus such as RIT Green, paraprofessional jobs and others. It will bring such richness to your life and positively impact the lives of others."

"Employers are looking for you to be part of their team. While it is very important to master the skills your job needs, you have to show that you are equally invested in the success of the company and committed to projects."

Some of Napoli's favorite memories of RIT/NTID are being involved in extra-curricular activities and Greek life—he was a member of the Kappa Phi Theta fraternity—and being involved in the NTID Student Congress and Student Life Team.

He also reminds students that good deeds do pay off.

"While I was in high school, I worked at an office supply store in an area near the copy machine. I saw how much paper was being wasted, so I insisted on it being recycled. It must have been 'good karma,' because I ended up at the EPA where I am in a position to serve my country and the public interest, and hopefully make a difference in the lives of other Americans."

This story appeared in the Fall/Winter issue of FOCUS Magazine.

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