The first semester flew by as I now begin my second and final semester in the MSF program here at Whitman. It was a great experience as I was exposed to many different things both inside and outside the classroom. Academically, all of my classes were challenging and forced me to push myself. Although difficult, the material and assignments were all things that were directly applicable to real world scenarios. My courses taught me lessons and skills that I know will help me in my career going forward, while also requiring me to keep up with current events in the constantly evolving financial world. In addition to the work done in the classroom, the leadership and teamwork skills developed through group assignments were also great learning tools. On any given project I could be working with people from three different countries, exposing me to different cultures and people working together to accomplish the task at hand.
Outside of the classroom was filled with great experiences as well. I was able to attend home games at the Carrier Dome for the Orange’s top 10 nationally ranked men’s basketball team and attended a One World concert, also on campus at the Carrier Dome, where I saw many great performers and heard the Dalai Lama speak.
While busy with the work in the classroom, searching for a job can also be very time consuming. When beginning the semester I had several different ideas and thoughts about what particular path in finance I wanted to pursue. Throughout the process the Career Center was a great resource. They held multiple workshops helping me improve my resume, utilize my LinkedIn profile, and also various networking events. Through these networking events, I had the opportunity to meet Whitman School alumni currently working in the fields that interested me, allowing me to gather more information for my search. The alumni were more than willing to help and were very generous with their time. Not only did they take the time to speak with me during the event, but they also gave me their contact information as we set up times to speak again on the phone and through e-mail.
Overall, my first semester was a great experience. It feels great to be a part of a community filled with people who are willing to help each other work towards their goals. Between the great people and resources such as the Ballentine Investment Institute and computer lab specifically for graduate students, I know I’m surrounded with tools to help me succeed. I feel confident going forward that Whitman has prepared me for a successful career in the financial world, not just through technical skills but practical real world skills as well.