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Recruiting Season at YU

When it comes to recruiting season, Yeshiva University’s Career Center does not waste any time. On the first Thursday of the school year the Career Center held the annual on campus recruiting prep event. YU students piled into Weissberg Commons by the hundreds to hear from an esteemed panel of Yeshiva University alumni who have successfully attained coveted positions within the finance and accounting fields. The panel consisted of alumni from various graduating classes, all in different stages of their careers.

Seeing YU alumni so willing to contribute time from their busy schedules to speak to students gives testimony to their desire for us, the current YU students, to follow in their footsteps.

The event began with a brief introduction from the Career Center’s Jocelyn Coalter who discussed the numerous on campus recruiting events that are coming up. The alumni presentation was then dominated by panel of YU graduates who gave their tips on everything from how to ask for informational interviews to what type of shoes the female students should wear. These tips are invaluable to helping students find the jobs they want. Even if you have heard them hundreds of times, many still make the same mistakes over and over again.

If you are not a business major, but you find yourself extremely interested in pursuing a career in finance or other areas of business have no fear. Jay Berger (YC ’11) one of the panelists, explained how he graduated with a bachelors in mathematics and was able to pursue a career in finance by studying basic financial terms, reading vault guides, and keeping updated on the world of finance. The panelists stressed time and time again that along with keeping updated on what is happening in the business world, students should come to recruiting events knowing exactly what the job they are applying for entails. Lawrence Albert (YC ’12) stressed strongly the importance of being prepared for interviews.

The best way to keep updated is to read the Wall Street Journal daily. Judah Kaplan (SY ’92) recommended that students focus on the side bar called “What’s News” by picking three articles that seem interesting and reading them to the end.

Being prepared according to the panelists includes conducting extensive research on the firm, knowing the field you are applying to, and being able to articulate information in a way that demonstrates your knowledge. The Finance sector in particular has many different aspects to it. As an aspiring analyst you should be reading up on different fields such as equity research, sales & trading and investment banking to find out what you are most interested in pursuing. Coming prepared is only the first step to landing the job you want, Judah Kaplan explained that having a positive attitude is a crucial part in receiving an offer. You'd be surprised how your demeanor and overall body language can reflect your attitude. Once you get an interview, Miriam Unger (SY ’10) spoke to the importance of getting to know your interviewer, but at the same time keeping a distance and avoid getting too personal.  Your goal is to convey to the interviewer that you will add value to their operations, and be able to work in teams.

Technical skills are a staple that every aspiring analyst should possess. Jeremy Levinson (SY ’13) spoke about the importance of knowing how to use Excel proficiently. There isn’t anything more important to an employer then knowing that you could begin working right away,conveying your knowledge of excel or any other computer programs will immediately appeal to employers.  Make sure to add it to your resume and show off your abilities at every opportunity. As for how to dress, guys should be wearing suits that fit, but not too tight, try and be conservative and not too trendy, because dressing inappropriately is the easiest way to make a bad impression.  For girls, Miriam recommended dressing nicely but conservatively, and staying away from heals, you are not trying to make a fashion statement.

This time of year provides you with a tremendous opportunity to start networking with alumni.Set up informational interviews with alumni in the industries you want to work in. Informational interviews are the best way to gain knowledge of the industry, and get insight directly from the people who have successfully achieved what you are out to accomplish. Judah recommended you make sure to set up at least one informational interview every week.

Students looking for full time jobs and internships should be getting ready for an exciting recruiting season. Make sure to look out for emails and fliers from the Career Center notifying you about upcoming events. The upcoming events include a finance career fair taking place on September 17th, a mock interview night on October 22nd, various OCR prep sessions, and information sessions presented by various firms in both the accounting and financial industries. Come ready to meet recruiters from Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, KPMG, and Deloitte, just to name a few. Remember to be prepared, dress appropriately, and have a positive attitude.Keep in mind, the finance and accounting fields are extremely competitive; a job will not just be given to you, you will have to earn it.