NYU: Stern - Graduate Finance Association
Graduate Finance Association at NYU:Stern
Michael Murphy and Brian Pizzitola, were previously a Senior Associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers and Account Executive at CBS Interactive respectively, before joining the MBA programme at NYU: Stern. They hope to take what they have learned from Stern to work in investment banking in New York. As Co-Presidents of the Graduate Finance Association, they talk about the benefits of being located in New York and give insights into current jobs in finance.
What are your club's big initiatives this year?
Our club has always been strong in working with first year students not only pursuing roles in investment banking but also all other forms of finance. One thing we hope to do this year is to continue to take advantage of our first class location by bringing in guest speakers for our annual conference and for a speaker series. With some of the best finance professionals in the world here in New York, one thing we always try to do at Stern is take advantage of our location.
What is your club's main event of the year, and how do you think it helps prepare members for a career in finance?
Our club's marquee event is the GFA Conference that takes place every year in the Fall. What the conference does for our students is two-fold; not only does it give Stern students an opportunity to meet and speak with some of the industry-shaping leaders of the day, but it also provides panel discussions and keynote speakers to educate students about current trends in the industry and the state of investment banking and finance as a whole. This is extremely valuable in the recruiting process as it allows Stern students to speak eloquently and intelligently about the industry that they are about to enter.
Where do you see yourselves after you complete your MBA?
Following our MBAs, we see ourselves working in investment banking here in New York. We have the luxury of having our business education take place in the world's foremost arena for finance, marketing, media, and fashion, so why leave?!
Are the same numbers of MBAs hoping to land jobs in investment banking compared to five years ago, or do you think interest in this sector has waned?
From our perspective as Graduate Finance Association (GFA) co-presidents, interest among members of the student club has remained strong. We think for students who want to attend business school, investment banking is still an attractive career path because of the critical thinking involved in the work and also the importance of the work with clients.
Where are the most exciting jobs in finance right now?
There are a ton of exciting jobs right now in finance, so it's definitely hard to choose one. With the amount of options that many companies have, from investing in acquisitions or research, to the investment bankers sourcing and putting together deals, to private equity and hedge funds that are investing in companies every day, the dynamic nature of the financial industry is what keeps it exciting day in and day out.
Are you at an advantage being located in downtown Manhattan compared with schools that aren't based near financial centers?
Of course! In fact we would say that being in Manhattan, specifically Greenwich Village, is one of Stern's greatest assets. The ability to take a subway ride down to Wall Street or up to Midtown to meet with industry professionals throughout the recruiting process, allows students to not only soak in more information about the industry, but also to engage in a high-touch relationship with the recruiters at different institutions.
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