NYU MBA, Victim In Subway Incident, Remembered As ‘Vibrant, Beloved’

·3 min read

Michelle Alyssa Go

She was a “vibrant, beloved and committed classmate,” a “stellar student” and a “natural leader.” She was an MBA from an elite business school and a bright star at a top consulting firm. But her life ended suddenly and tragically last week in an apparent random act of violence.

Michelle Alyssa Go, a 2010 NYU Stern School of Business MBA, was killed Saturday (January 15) in New York City when she was pushed in front of a moving subway train in Times Square. She was just 40 years old.

Go’s death made headlines in and well outside of New York, sparking memories of nearly two years of pandemic-inspired violence against people of Asian descent. Authorities, however, say the 61-year-old homeless man arrested in the attack did not appear to have anti-Asian motivations.


In a statement Monday (January 17), NYU Stern School of Business described Michelle Go as “a vibrant, beloved and committed classmate, student ambassador, and alumna.”

“The NYU Stern community was shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the death of Michelle Go (MBA ’10) who was killed in a senseless act of violence in Times Square on Saturday, January 15,” the school statement read.

“There has been a tremendous outpouring of sympathy and support from her classmates around the world, sentiments that we extend throughout our entire community. She is remembered as a stellar student, natural leader and loyal friend. She will be greatly missed.

“Our hearts go out to Michelle’s family and her many friends. While there may be no indication that this was a bias crime, we especially feel for the Asian American community at this time in light of the recent condemnable surge in anti-Asian violence.

“The family has asked for privacy so this will be the only statement Stern will issue, and we ask others to join us in respecting their wishes.”


A native of Fremont, California, Michelle Go earned an undergraduate degree from UCLA and worked in mergers and acquisitions for Deloitte Consulting after earning her Stern MBA. Her death made headlines nationally, sparking memories of 2020 and 2021, when hate crimes against people of Asian descent spiked as the pandemic worsened and right-wing pundits and politicians ramped up anti-China rhetoric. But her death also has led to renewed calls for greater mental health and other services for unhoused people; her attacker, Simon Martial, is known to have been homeless at least since 2004.

Commitment to greater city services likely would have appealed to Michelle Go, described in an article in the Sunday New York Times as “committed to the city she had considered home after completing a masters in business administration at New York University’s Stern School of Business,” and who had volunteered for the last decade for various causes in her adopted hometown.

Among her commitments: She “volunteered for 10 years for the New York Junior League, coaching women and children on nutrition with a goal of stabilizing at-risk and homeless families, the league’s president, Dayna Barlow Cassidy, said in a statement,” according to the Times. “While on a committee that focused on empowering young adults and teenagers, Ms. Go prepared job candidates for interviews, helped fine-tune résumés and offered tips on personal finance.”


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