By Vanessa Rutigliano
Joseph Salamone, a junior self-designed major focusing on innovation and entrepreneurship, received the Degree of Chevalier by the Order of DeMolay International on Jan. 14.
Salamone is the co-founder and president of the Entrepreneurship Club at the College and has been involved with DeMolay, a youth leadership organization, since the eighth grade.
The Degree of Chevalier, which is the highest honor that can be given to active members of DeMolay, is awarded for outstanding activity and work for DeMolay.
“I honestly did not expect to receive this honor, and I am humbled that I did,” Salamone said. “Since I joined DeMolay, I have gone through life trying my best to represent who a DeMolay is and what we stand for.”
The degree cannot be applied for and nominations are made by a unanimous vote of DeMolay International.
Salamone has been involved in entrepreneurial endeavors since middle school with projects ranging from painting garage floors to selling hologram bracelets meant to improve athletic ability called Power Balance Bracelets and Flip Up shirts, which spell out phrases when folded the right way. Finding no entrepreneurial outlets at the College, he decided to get more involved on campus by co-founding and later becoming president of the Entrepreneurship Club.
As president, Salamone takes his responsibilities for the club seriously and makes it his goal to get to know each member.
“In addition to running and planning our club and executive board (eboard) meetings, I push the (club’s) eboard to do what they want and think is best for the club,” Salamone said.
As Salamone said in his acceptance speech after receiving the Degree of Chevalier, he has been able to use the skills and experiences gained through his involvement in DeMolay to better serve as president of the Entrepreneurship Club.
“These skills gained from DeMolay have impacted me as a leader by giving me the confidence and knowledge to be my own person and do what I set my mind to,” Salamone said. “It gave me the skills needed to co-found and grow the club. I believe younger DeMolays look up to me for this.”
Alongside supporting Salamone in receiving his award were two of the executive board members from the Entrepreneurship Club, Greg Vaks, a networker and a junior finance and computer science double major, and D.J. Kleinbard, a marketer and a junior marketing major.