2017 New York City Networking Trip
By Jennifer Mace ’19 and Lydia Fu ’18
This January, the Financial Economics Institute and the Robert Day Scholars Program sponsored the 14th annual New York City Networking Trip. In the final week of the winter break, nine juniors and nine sophomores traveled to New York City to visit firms, Monday through Thursday, January 9th through the 12th, in different sectors of the financial industry and connect with industry professionals and CMC alumni in NYC. Michelle Chamberlain, Associate Vice President and Dean for Student Opportunities; Colleen Murphy, Associate Director of Career Services at the Student Opportunity Center; Professor Joshua Rosett, Director of the Financial Economics Institute; and Professor Eric Hughson, Chair of the Robert Day School of Economics and Finance, accompanied students on this trip.
The first visit of the trip was to Atalaya Capital Management. The group was hosted by Ivan Zinn ’96, Atalaya’s founding partner and Chief Investment Officer. He gave the students a thorough introduction to the hedge fund and private equity industries. Associate, Mia Genereux, also shared with the students her experience at Travelers and Target before working for Atalaya. At the end of the visit, Mr. Zinn organized a pop quiz on the financial markets. Some students went home with water bottles and travel bags.
The second stop of the first day was at Lazard, a boutique investment bank that specializes in financial advisory and asset management. The students enjoyed a lunch presentation by Andrew Olsen (an Associate in the real estate group), and Analyst Sam Kaplan (Pomona ’15), in the restructuring group. They shared with their experiences in industry groups and gave advice to students in an engaging Q&A session.
Next, the group visited J.P. Morgan. The students met with Andrew Nam ’15, Merriel Foster ’14, Jeffrey Izon and Melanie White. They gave examples of their day-to-day work as Analysts and answered questions on their decision to work at a big bulge bracket firm like J.P. Morgan in a casual Q&A session.
The day concluded with a visit to Fred Alger, a mutual fund focused on growth investing.
The students were joined by Kevin Collins (Senior Vice President), and Gabrielle Linden (Executive Assistant). Collins gave a detailed presentation on Alger’s investment philosophy on growth and the role of an Analyst at Fred Alger. Students asked questions along the way and gained more understanding of what growth investment means in practice.
Monday night was the first round of student dine arounds with CMC alumni. Students, in groups of two, had dinner with distinguished CMC alumni in the financial industry to learn about their lives after college.
The first visit of the second day was to Morgan Stanley. Ben Kraus ’11, Phil Crawford ’15, and Matt Ginsberg joined the group to talk about their work in the sales and trading division. Students had a lively discussion with the traders ranging from the transformation technology brought to the trading floor to their Brexit and election night experiences. Crawford spoke about his experience interacting with clients and traders as a sales person.
Next, students visited UBS Asset Management. At UBS, students met with Edward Conrad ’06 (Director of Private Funds Group), Susan M. King ’85 (Head of Sales and Marketing) and Henry Goodman (CMC parent and Senior Vice President). They walked students through a detailed presentation on the divisions within asset management and wealth management and talked about their own careers before and at UBS.
The group then traveled uptown to Deutsche Bank, where the students met with Alan Delsman ’68 (Senior Credit Executive), Catherine Madigan (MD), Calli Hayes (MD), Barbara Ricci (MD, Global Markets Debt), Walter Chamorro (Director, Head of Credit, Latin America), Debbie Jones (Director GM Research), Zain Jamal ’10 (Assistant VP, RE, Global Banking), Steven Limandibhratha ’14 (Analyst, RE, Global Banking), Sumaer Sandhu ’16 (Analyst-Risk), Taylor Pulling (Associate, Leveraged Finance Risk) and Nicolle Bugajski (Associate, HR). Students learned about different roles in risk management and the global market in an engaging lunch and Q&A.
The last visit of the day was to Moelis & Co. Brian Callaci, P’20, Adam Augusiak (Associate), Larry Liao (Analyst) and Nick Deale (Analyst), hosted the group. Students listened to a presentation about Moelis and the spectacular growth it has undergone in recent years. Adam shared with students his transition from law to investment banking. Larry and Nick also talked about their day-to-day work and their reasons for joining Moelis.
The day ended with an alumni reception at The Jimmy at the James Hotel, hosted by Doug Peterson ’80, President and CEO of S&P Global. Students enjoyed a night of magnificent views and lively conversations with CMC alumni in New York.
The third day started with a visit to IBM Watson Group. IBM Watson is located in “Silicon Alley,” a neighborhood of NYC that is ranked second in the nation for technology innovations/companies. At IBM Watson, students met with Yashih Wu (Chief of Staff, GM of Cognitive Solutions), Steve Cowley (GM Cloud), and CMC parent Ellie Keinan (GM Transformation). Through an interactive simulation with IBM Watson’s technology, they demonstrated the effectiveness and power of natural language processing and the importance of machines and humans working together. (Note the nearby picture of students with the Jeff Koons Balloon Rabbit (Red) in the lobby of their building. They explained to us that this piece of art was already in the lobby of the building housing IBM Watson when they moved in, and is similar to another piece by the same artist that sold as the highest priced art piece at auction ever, for a living artist. (Find out more here.)
Next, a group of Millstein employees, including Matt Scheidemann (VP), Noah Kaswell (Associate), Sean Sakaguchi ’16 (Analyst), Sam Brewer, Josh Mendelssohn, and several others, delivered a presentation explaining restructuring and a deal they recently completed. Students learned about the benefits of working at a smaller, specialized boutique investment bank like Millstein.
The group then walked to Stifel/Miller Buckfire, where they met with John McKenna ’89 (Managing Director) and Evan Santoro (Analyst). McKenna and Santoro explained the core skills needed to be a successful investment banker and where they believe investment banking and human condition is headed.
Wednesday’s last visit was to BBVA, a Spanish bank with an office in NYC that boasts an amazing view of Central Park (see nearby photo). Students learned about fixed income S&T from Simeon Wallace (Executive Director), market research from Patrick Holert ’85 (VP), and global market events from Mark Johnson (Executive Director).
Wednesday concluded with another evening of dine arounds. Pairs of small groups of students went to dinner with alumni at restaurants all throughout New York City. The dine arounds allowed students to connect and chat with alumni in more intimate settings. Students loved this unique opportunity to ask career questions, receive advice, and establish strong relationships with CMC alums.
Thursday began with a breakfast and a tour at Perella Weinberg Partners. Rebecca Offensend ’08 (Associate), Robert Bond ’05 (Associate), and Simon Clarke (Director), showed students around the office and explained Perella Weinberg’s unique position as a relatively small advisory and asset management firm that can compete with leading investment banks at an advisory level. Analysts Emily Chen, Michael LeGrand, and Parker Shields, answered questions about their strong summer internship and analyst programs.
Students then travelled down to the financial district for a Q&A at Jane Street with Andres Varon (a software developer) and Andy Niedermaier (a trader). Students jumped at the chance to ask questions about the firm’s quantitative trading specialization, flat organization, and focus on technology. The visit concluded with a tour of Jane Street’s modern office led by Nikki Price and Lauren Sposta.
The students then walked across the street for their last visit of the trip at Goldman Sachs. Students first met with Ben Colman ’03 (VP Technology), Brian Delaney ’16 (Investment Banking Analyst), Andrew Cosentino ’11 (Investment Banking Associate), David Alvillar ’01 (Securities MD) and Max Mullen ’12 (Investment Banking Associate), and they discussed the firm’s distinct technological products, the investment banking summer and full-time analyst program, and securities trading. Next, Christine Mann ’87 (Private Wealth Management VP), Andrew Kaiser P ’13 (COO), and Peter Rominger MA’14 (Investment Management Analyst), offered insight into Goldman’s Investment Management Division and its culture of offering more opportunity early in a career at the firm.
The 14th annual NYC Networking Trip was a great success. Many students spent the morning of Friday, January 13th, interviewing with some of the 15 firms visited during the trip, or having coffee chats with alumni. The students gained unique exposure to a variety of financial and a few technology firms. The students learned about different roles in the financial industry, received advice from individuals extremely successful in the field, and they built lasting relationships that will be highly beneficial to those interested in working in finance or in New York City, in general.
A great deal of thanks must be extended to the Robert Day Scholars Program, the Financial Economics Institute, the CMC Alumni and Parent Relations Office, the CMC Alumni Association, the RDS Advisory Board, and the many alumni hosts at the various firms for their generous contributions that made this trip possible. An additional “thank you” must be given to Colleen Murphy, Joshua Rosett, Eric Hughson, and Michelle Chamberlain for coordinating, attending, and guiding the students on the trip.
For past NYC Networking Trips, please refer to “Guest Speakers and Conferences” page.