Students Set Sights on Finance Careers in Chicago

September 2016

Elizabeth Jenike

During the last week of August, 24 Farmer School students had the opportunity to network with finance, banking and consulting executives in Chicago. The goals for the week were straightforward: engage with representatives of these companies, gain critical information from the ground floor and learn what it takes to work within these industries.

In a new addition to the event, the students also participated in a stock pitch competition against each other. Teams were given the financial records of public entities to scrutinize, and they performed financial analyses in order to prepare and present recommendations based on those records.

The winning team presented a case for Medtronic, a medical device manufacturer and the largest global medical technology development company. The students performed qualitative and quantitative research and created a comparable company analysis and a discounted cash flow model to support their thesis of why Medtronic was a good investment.

Opportunities abound

For the last eight years, FSB students have been given the opportunity to interact with business executives from the biggest banking and consulting firms in Chicago. Although the main sponsor of the event was Bank of America this year, they visited the offices of several other big name companies:

  • William Blair
  • Bain & Co.
  • Factset
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Northern Trust
  • Federal Reserve Bank
  • The main goal of Finance Week has always been to network. Students rub elbows with some of the best in the business - many Farmer School grads, and by doing so, they gain a critical understanding of what it takes to survive in their chosen fields.

    “They get to see what the different industries are like,” said Nick Cattin, Director of Career & Professional Development at the FSB. “They can find their fit - this helps steer them in the right direction in terms of their career path and what it takes to get there.”

    The advantages of participating in Chicago Finance Week are tangible, as well. Students have been able to secure internships because of the work they did during this week - having actual deliverables is a key component of landing an internship, and they are able to create a portfolio that exemplifies everything they’ve been learning in the classroom.

    “Chicago Finance Week was an experiential learning experience through the world of finance, with the priceless bonus of networking with Miami alumni from across the country,” said Evan Langer, a junior Accounting and Finance major. “The experience really impacted my career plans. After visiting companies such as Bain & Co. and William Blair, I am much more interested in a career in consulting or investment banking. After receiving advice from students who were in my shoes only a few years ago, I have created career goals for my future that I otherwise may have not made.”

    Students in Chicago for Finance Week