August 31, 2018
My signature project this summer was an internship with J.P. Morgan Chase within their Asset and Wealth Management group, in San Francisco. I worked with a team within the office to function as an analyst and assist bankers in their everyday responsibilities, include researching prospects and preparing materials for client meetings. I also attended training sessions and talked with analysts to determine what a full-time position entails after graduation.
This summer was the first time I have had the opportunity to work in both a large city and a truly professional atmosphere. I was not sure if I was interested in the financial services industry or a fast-paced work environment before the summer. After experiencing the internship and responsibility that came with it, I began to learn many of my strengths and how to use them to succeed in the workplace. I loved the people I worked with, and appreciated how much I was able to interact with all levels of people at the office. I have always been detail-oriented and enjoyed projects, but being thrown into an atmosphere with very tight deadlines and a meticulous focus, I learned that I enjoy this industry and pace of work. I also was taught an immense amount about both finance and the stock market, and realized the differences in practice versus things I have learned in classes. All of this experience was so valuable to me in helping me decide if this is something that I would like to begin my career doing, and I believe that it is.
This summer, I had the opportunity to talk with and build friendships with many people I worked with, from summer interns to analysts to managing directors. Learning why all of those people worked for J.P. Morgan and what their role is was a very special experience. I was surprised at the mentorship that a third-year analyst named Michael was willing to give me whenever I came to him with questions. As a result, I have developed more patience and a desire to help younger students at Ohio State as I return to a leadership position within Buckeye Capital Investors this fall.
Going into the summer, I was not entirely sure what actual work I would be doing, or even necessarily what a wealth management analyst did every day. Early on, I learned how important the team aspect is to each banker. Even as a summer intern, I was able to put together a large amount of research and meeting materials that benefitted everyone I worked with. Doing this under a few tight deadlines was also a new experience for me, and I really enjoyed the challenges that were presented during the summer.
Another great relationship that I developed this summer was with the coordinators of the program, Marc and Bryan. They have both worked for J.P. Morgan for several years, and came from New York to the San Francisco office. It was extremely interesting to learn about their backgrounds, and the career progression for each of them that led to being in the same office as me this summer. Hearing guidance from them for steps to succeed early in my career and how to develop good habits early on was one of the best parts of my summer. Just like Michael, both of them were eager to help me acclimate to the environment and the new city, even taking me to a San Francisco Giants game to meet more people from the office.
Another activity I participated in this summer was a weekly meeting titled “Say Something Smart”. Several people from the office met each Friday to discuss new and interesting things they had encountered, whether related to work or not. Those meetings were a great way to learn more about many of the people I worked with and their interests, from flying trapeze gymnastics to technology companies in the Bay Area, or a variety of sports teams. I loved the opportunity to simply sit and talk about an array of topics and become a more well-rounded thinker just by participating and hearing so much information on a weekly basis.
The change that occurred for me was not so much a transformation as a realization. I have been on what I thought was the right path for me, as I have enjoyed my finance classes and relationship building at Ohio State. Having the opportunity to be immersed in a setting that may be my future career is so valuable to me, as this summer reinforced my love for finance and the field I have chosen to work in. Without this summer, I would have still possessed uncertainty if wealth management is truly what I want to be doing to begin my career, and I would have been much more unclear to what the job actually entailed. I have realized what I need to do during my senior year to become a more able professional, including studying for the CFA exam that many of my peers have taken or will take. I also have a clear goal for myself as I graduate college and work to be one of the most prepared analysts in my program, which will open the door for me to become an associate banker in three years. Having a summer head start on other incoming analysts is valuable in many ways, and the experience I had in San Francisco is one I will not forget.