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Ninth Annual Boot Camp Attracts Largest Alumni Group Ever

The Bendheim Center for Finance welcomed 26 new Master in Finance students at our ninth annual Boot Camp, held at the BCF Sept 7, 9-10, 2013. Students attended math camp the two weeks prior and for the first time took an introduction to financial accounting course during that two-week period.

This ‘boot camp’ has been run for Master in Finance students for the past nine years with the help of a prestigious group of alumni and corporate affiliates. (A list of the students and their resumes is available on this website.) The math refresher course was taught by Postdoc Matt Lorig.

To kick off the boot camp, Wendell Collins, director of corporate relations, outlined the career development landscape and presented tips and techniques on the ‘do’s and don’ts’ of networking and interviewing. MFin Alum Thomas John, BlackRock, kicked off the alumni speakers by sharing his own career story and provided advice to students seeking to build and strengthen their own networks.

Master in Finance alumni then held a roundtable panel discussion followed by mock interviews with new students.The panel included Nicolas Cojocaru-Durand, Citadel; Theo Kim, Princeton University Investment Company; Adam Lutz, DC Energy; Nestor Macias, Credit Suisse; Lilian Schulz, BTG Pactual; Chad Shampine, Morgan Stanley; and Dennis Walsh, Goldman Sachs Asset Management. They discussed what it takes to succeed in their areas of finance and shared their thoughts on best practices in interviewing techniques, their own career path and interests, and recommended methodology for job searches in this competitive environment.

Professor Frank Fabozzi kicked off the boot camp talks on Monday with an overview of the growth in careers in quantitative finance and related trends. 

Nikola Miljkovic , MD, and Sujay Kumar Davuluri, VP, spoke about their roles and focus at Barclays Enterprise Risk Management, Investment Banking Division.

MFin alum Jean Boyer and ORFE PhD candidate  Vivi (Wei) Dai explained the integral role Strats and Strats division interns play within Morgan Stanley.

Grace Williamson and Amy Pszczolkowski of Career Services discussed best practices for leveraging career support services available to Bendheim Master’s students, including a detailed overview of TigerTracks.

Paul Edelman, president of Edelman & Associates (a new BCF corporate affiliate) walked the new students through the process of working with an executive recruiter and trends in hiring in quantitative trading and technology.

On Tuesday, Peter Lighte, Vice Chairman, Global Corporate Bank, JPMorgan China, reflected on his broad array of career experiences around the world and shared advice on how to make the most of the student experience and how to weigh a growing range of career options and opportunities.  

Andy Golden, President, Princeton Investment Company, talked about PRINCO’s unique approach and shared his views on careers within university endowments.

Amar Sujanani, Portfolio Manager, Credit Suisse Asset Management, spoke about his career on both the sellside and now asset management since the Princeton MFin program, and discussed trends in the industry and opportunities for students.
Hafize Gaye Erkan, Managing Director, IBD Sales Strats, Goldman Sachs, and Sophie Wang discussed how quantitative finance has evolved over the past 30 years and provided case study examples of the types of projects that fall within the roles and responsibilities of IBD Sales Strats.
John Massad, Director, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., returned to speak at boot camp about opportunities on the buyside and how to differentiate oneself in an increasingly competitive job market. 
 L. Sankar, Managing Director in Citi’s Multi-Asset Group and Markets Quantitative Analysis, provided an overview of quantitative opportunities at Citi and shared his own career experiences and advice on how students should weigh career options.
James Yeh, Senior Managing Director, Citadel, and Princeton trustee, shared his own career path and experiences as being a part of early days of Citadel, and discussed the skills necessary to succeed at a firm like Citadel.

The Friday after boot camp, Economic and Finance Librarian Todd Hines hosted a tour and information session later that week at Firestone Library, sharing information with first-year students on the resources available at the .

MFin alumni share views on industry trends with students at boot camp.

Thomas John highlights the value of networking.

MFin Alum Jean Boyer detailed his work as a Morgan Stanley Strat.

Grace Williamson demonstrates web tools from Career Services.

Amar Sujanani shared his experiences moving from the sellside to buyside.

Gaye Erkan walked students through the Goldman Sachs IBD Strats world.

MFin students joined Citadel's James Yeh for the closing talk and reception.

New Mfin students celebrate the end of math camp/boot camp.