Growing up in Italy, Mario Liberatore envisioned a better life for himself and his family. He immigrated through Ellis Island and settled in the Bronx of New York. In 1955, he, his wife, and their three children, headed to California to pursue his dream of attending USC. He successfully completed a bachelor’s degree and continued his education to receive a master’s degree as well. Mario then secured employment as an aerospace engineer. He was able to buy a house, a car, and attain the American Dream thanks to the education he received at USC.
His only son, Phil, seeing what hard work had accomplished, also dreamed of attending USC to continue in the success of his father. Phil learned from his father how to be a self-starter and hard worker; those qualities helped him attain success in school. He ultimately received a scholarship to attend USC because of his academic excellence. He continued in his father’s footsteps, receiving his undergraduate degree, followed by his MBA from the prestigious university. He applied what he learned at SC and today runs two very successful businesses. Phil’s belief in the American Dream and what hard work can accomplish inspired him to run in the 2010 Congressional election in the 42nd district.
USC runs in the blood for the Liberatore family. Phil’s daughter, Lisa, is currently working towards attaining her Master’s of Public Diplomacy. The education and life lessons Mario learned at USC made his dreams a reality. Mario, Phil and Lisa are living the American Dream because USC instilled in them the character, drive and dedication to truly succeed. USC will continue to flow in the veins of this family and its generations to come.
By Lisa Liberatore