Name: Griffin Wasz
Major: Finance and Economics
Hometown: Western Springs, Illinois
Interning with: B. Riley FBR
Location: Orange County, California
Position: Investment Banking Summer Analyst
I assist analysts and full-time employees with day-to day activities on live engagements, develop presentations for clients and create models for potential clients.
During this last school year, I tried to schedule as many networking calls as possible to anyone that worked in investment banking and would be willing to talk to me. Eventually, I came across B. Riley, and the person I talked to was able to put me in the interview process, which eventually led to me getting the offer.
I am very interested in the industry of investment banking, and it is rare to get an internship opportunity as a sophomore, so I jumped at the first chance I got.
To succeed at a school like IWU, you have to be very entrepreneurial. This means that you can’t rely on others to do the work for you. I think this mindset has kind of stuck with me throughout internship recruiting, as I knew if I wasn’t working hard to get the internship, someone out there would be.
I hope to learn a little bit more about the industry that isn’t really taught in any classroom anywhere, so I could have a unique experience to bring back to Bloomington with me. Also, I am Co-Founder and Co-President of the Investment Banking Scholars Club at IWU, so I would love to use some of the things I learn on the job to enhance the overall experience of the club.
This office is unbelievable. Every day, our Managing Director will have teaching moments with all of us interns to ensure that we are gaining all we can from our experience. This man has spent the last 30 years working in IB, so he knows absolutely everything, and seeing how he thinks about business and the world in general is incredibly interesting. Also, in investment banking, you are working on transactions between companies (assisting companies sell themselves to a larger company, helping companies buy smaller companies, etc.), and getting the chance to work on deals that can be worth tens or hundreds of millions of dollars is obviously a very cool experience
Without an internship in the industry that you are interested in, there is no real way of knowing if that is the career path for you. If in your internship you find out you hate it, great! At least it was 8 weeks and not years, like it would be if you went straight into it after graduation. Internships allow you to experience things that interest you, and find out what isn’t for you. Also, it is much harder to get a full-time job offer after graduation with no prior work experience that is relevant to that industry. Sure, this isn’t always the case, but more often than not, an internship shows that you already have an understanding of working in an office, and it shows that you are genuinely interested in the work.