Robert is a recent graduate who majored in Marketing and Advertising. He previously interned at Ogily & Mather and DirectTV. This summer he was an Operations Intern at JP Morgan Chase.
I recently had the opportunity to interview Junior Ramroop, a recent alumn of both Baruch College and the Peers for Careers Program at the Starr Career Development Center. Because of his hard work during his internships and extra-curricular activities, he was able to gain a full-time offer at Citi. Read below for tips for success as Junior points out which specific instances helped him along the way.
1) What activities were you involved in at Baruch?
I was heavily involved with on campus leadership programs at Baruch. After completing the T.E.A.M. BARUCH leadership seminar, I became an Orientation Leader helping freshmen and transfer students get prepared for their first semester. In addition to that, I became a Freshman Seminar Peer mentor helping first year students get used to the culture and academic climate of Baruch. I also joined the Peers for Careers Program where I was able to help students with career exploration, resume writing and interviewing skills. In search for a more student-directed organization, I became involved with Golden Key International Honour society where I was originally the Coordinator of the Feed the Hungry initiative, and later became the Treasurer of the organization. Apart from these activities, I was also a member for the Financial Leadership Program where I gained further knowledge about my major in Finance.
2) What was the most helpful activity?
My time as a Peer for Career at the STARR Career Development Center at Baruch was the most helpful to me on a personal and professional level. I was given the time to speak with students like myself about resume writing and interviewing skills which enabled me to build my confidence and professional demeanor. From that experience, everything fell into place, as I was able to easily meet with recruiters and generate a genuine rapport with them.
3) What was the most unique activity and how has it helped you succeed in your current job?
The most unique activity would have to be my time as a member of the Financial Leadership Program which is a rigorous one year program with a goal of getting students prepared for the competitive and challenging world of Finance. Nothing could have prepared me better for my current job than FLP because of the high level exposure to real word projects and presentations. I was able to get more insight into what is expected of a Financial Analyst and some of the responsibilities/job functions that come with the job. Moreover, the competitive nature of the students in the program prepared me for my current work environment.
4) What internships have you had?
My very first internship was with Abbott Laboratories where I was involved in the Finance Professional Development Program. I worked in the Human Resources department mainly performing Audit and looking at expense reports. My second internship was with JP Morgan’s Intra Year Operations Internship. There I worked on a credit default swap trading desk mainly involved in tracking breaks between systems and carrying out daily reporting procedures for senior management. My third and final internship was with Citigroup’s Finance Analysts Program where I was placed in the Legal Entity Controllers group mainly looking at the consolidation of Citi’s many subsidiaries.
5) Have you had mentors and how were they most helpful?
I had a few mentors along the way who really guided me through my career development. One of my initial mentors was the program coordinator of the Peers for Careers program who always exhibited immense professionalism and public speaking skills, two elements that are vital in today’s job market. Another mentor was the program coordinator of FLP who had an abundance of knowledge in the finance field and someone who willingly shared life and work experiences with me.
6) What is the best piece of advice you would give someone who wants to work in finance?
First and foremost, you have to want to be in finance in order to succeed in the field. Before anything else you need to ask yourself if finance is what you want to do. The only way to do so is by doing research and speaking with people who work in finance. You have to be prepared for a very competitive environment, where things move very fast. While you may not know what your exact job functions are today, there are a few things that are standard across the field. Your technical skills involving proficient knowledge of Excel and a basic knowledge of accounting and finance will be imperative to your success in the financial services industry.
7) What does your day look like at work?
I am responsible for the creation of a number of reports every month, which is expected to be prepared within a specific time period. This is the predictable part of my day since I would simply work on the reports that are due at that time of the month. However, on many occasions there are “fire drills” that occur where senior management may have additional requests that have a tighter deadline. These requests need immediate attention and therefore may be the first thing I work on for that day. In addition, due to a rapidly changing environment, there may be times when I would work on improvements to current reports or new projects that may pop up.
So what can we learn from this interview with Junior? Whether you have an interest in finance or are just trying to clarify your major and career path, hopefully you can benefit from Junior’s experience and advice. Get involved, do your research, know your field, and be open to opportunities. On behalf of myself, the Peers for Careers Program and Starr Career Development Center, I would like to Thank Junior for sharing his story and wish him well in his career journey.