YU Students gather for “What is Wall Street” Event
The Finance Club started off the year on a high note on Thursday night, September 3rd, with its introductory event titled “What is Wall Street.” Dov Herzberg, vice president of the Finance Club, moderated a panel of two Syms alumni and two current students. First to speak was Yonina Fogel, who works full time in the investor relations department at Two Sigma, a New York City-based hedge fund with around $30 billion in assets under management. Fogel recently took this position, after completing a two-year stint in the wealth management department of J.P. Morgan. Fogel adores her new role and commented that she encourages more women to consider finance as a career. She highlighted the great work-life balance, and overall excitement at the job as compelling reasons for why attendees of the event should consider joining Fogel in hedge funds.
Kivi Eisenberg, born in Vienna, graduated Syms in May and is now a full-time Equity Research Associate at Jefferies and Company. Explaining to the audience what equity research is, Kivi called it “a jack of all trades,” and that it’s given him an ability to “learn a little about everything.” When asked what he enjoys most about his job, Eisenberg stressed the “lean teams” that are common in equity research--Eisenberg works on a team of only three people--the “exposure to management,” and the ability to “become an expert on a bunch of stocks.” To illustrate his first point about lean teams, Eisenberg commented that recently his boss wasn’t able to attend a dinner meeting with Nike CEO, Mark Parker, so a twenty-three year-old member of the team filled in for the boss instead.
After the two alumni spoke, two current Syms seniors Josh Honig and Jeremy Forman, spoke about their internships this past summer at investment banks. At the end of the summer, both Honig, who specialized in the TMT (Technology, Media, & Telecommunications) industry at Goldman Sachs, and Forman, who worked on Mergers and Acquisitions at the Royal Bank of Canada, accepted full-time offers to return to their respective jobs upon graduation.
Although Honig and Forman were working at different banks and specializing in different industries, both had similar workloads. Each job required an extensive knowledge of financial modeling in Excel, putting together reports, and staying up-to-date on the financial markets. To the chagrin of listeners, Honig and Forman detailed their day-to-day schedules, which often involved working into the early morning and sometimes even pulling all-nighters. That being said, both Honig and Forman described investment banking as a great opportunity to learn and prepare for their next positions once they spend a few years at their respective investment banks.
The packed room on the fifth floor of Furst Hall was filled with budding Wall Street aspirants, hoping to learn and absorb the panel’s experience and knowledge so that they too can take the next step towards accomplishing their goals. Whether they end up working on Wall Street or not, the advice from the panel is relevant to all YU students, regardless of whether they started college classes this fall, or are only months away from graduation. Eisenberg encouraged all YU students to take a step back and try to picture what the next couple of years will look like as they continue progressing through their studies at YU and then search for jobs or graduate school programs. All admitted that one of their toughest challenges faced was trying to get their ‘foot through the door’ by networking and making connections, but that starting this process earlier on in college can be beneficial. Despite the hard work that lies ahead for each and every one of us, the four accomplished students and alumni who participated in the event illustrate what is possible with a lot of hard work, passion, and networking.