Meet Alum, Michael Wright ’12, Associate, Equity Capital Markets at Canaccord Genuity Inc

October 11th, 2018 by aclauson

Alum Michael Wright ’12 – Associate, Equity Capital Markets at Canaccord Genuity Inc


Name: Michael Wright

Class Year: 2012

Organization Name: Canaccord Genuity (Equity Capital Markets)


In one sentence, what does your job entail?

Advise and execute equity financings for growth focused companies.


What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross? How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?

3 months into my first job out of HC, an HC alumni reached out asking if I would be interested in an analyst position on the Canaccord Equity Capital Markets desk. Despite feeling hesitant given my short time at my first employer, I felt the opportunity to join a small, dynamic team would be too hard to pass up.


What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Football, SGA, Big Brother Big Sister


What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

History major. Despite not being a finance related major, it provided me with the ability to analyze multiple pieces of information into narrower concepts/ themes . The skills of reading, analyzing, writing, etc. are crucial skills in any professional setting.


What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?


Information analysis


What advice do you have for students on campus today?

Choose a major that is interesting to you – Holy Cross has a great reputation across all industries, and employers recognize they a hiring hard-working, smart candidates. Unless an industry requires specific credentials, do not force a major to fit a job application.

Make classroom performance #1, but also spend time utilizing the Holy Cross alumni network in your targeted profession(s). While it can be intimidating at first, the majority of alumni are extremely engaging and happy to provide career advice.

How Should You Prepare for the Career Fair?

September 14th, 2018 by aclauson

By: Katie Flanagan ’19


The Career Fair is coming up this Wednesday, September 19, 2018 from 2-5pm in the Hogan Ballroom, so get excited! The Career Fair is a fantastic opportunity to talk with potential employers about future full-time job and internship opportunities (a list of the employers attending can be found here). Preparation is key to ensure that you make a good impression on potential employers, and also make the most of out of your own time! Whether this is your first time attending a career fair or your hundredth, it’s always nice to have some tips and tricks up your sleeve. So without further ado, here are NUMBER tips to help you ace the Career Fair:

1. Do Your Research

I cannot stress enough how important it is to do your research on all the companies that you’re interested in that will be at the career fair (here’s the list again). Know which companies and positions you’re interested in, and be prepared to talk about why they interest you. You also want to avoid asking questions for which the answers can easily be found on their website. Also, you want to know your deadlines. Many of the organizations that will be at the Career Fair have deadlines coming up within the next month.


2. Polish Up Your Resume

Stop by the Center for Career Development (Hogan 203) for drop-in hours Monday through Friday, 1-4pm to make sure your resume is as up-to-date and polished as it can be. There will also be Resume lobby tables next week in Hogan where you can also have your resume edited and polished.


3. Make a Game Plan

There will be over 50 organizations in the Hogan Ballroom on Wednesday, so it will be easy to get overwhelmed. To prevent this, make a list of the organizations you’re interested in and rank them in order of which ones you’re most interested in. Then, if you have to leave for class or the career fair ends, you won’t miss out on the organizations most important to you.


4. Prepare Your “Elevator Pitch”

Your “elevator pitch” is a short, succinct description of yourself that will make an impression on the person you give it to. You should say your name, your major, your class year, and something that differentiates you from everyone else around you. An example of one would be:

“Hi, my name is Mickey Mouse. I’m an Art and Economics double major in the class of 1928, and I am the face of a multi-billion dollar and internationally known corporation.”


5. Come Prepared

Not only do you have to prepare in the days before the Fair, you should need to be prepared on the day of the Fair. Here are some things you should bring:

  • Printed resumes
    • You should bring 5-10 printouts of your resume to hand out to employers if they ask
  • A folder
    • Those resumes should be in a nice folder, not crushed in your backpack or folded in your hand
    • A folder is also handy if you accrue any materials from organizations you talk to


6. Put Your Game Face On

You want to represent the best side of yourself (and Holy Cross!) as you can, so make sure to dress in business casual, get a good night’s sleep, and don’t forget to put a smile on! If you’re an introvert, give yourself a mental pep talk to be prepared to talk with people. As I learned at the Senior Alumni Networking night, be a lion, not a wildebeest!


7. Own Your Awesomeness

Just by virtue of being at Holy Cross you’re already awesome (though I might be biased), but this is the time to own it! Competition for jobs and internships can be tough, so now is not the time to be overly humble or shy. You are an awesome person, so own what makes you unique and what differentiates you from the crowd. In the words of my future best friend (even though he doesn’t really know it yet!) Ben Platt, “the things that make you strange are the things that make you powerful.”


Now, go forth and set the (career) world on fire!  

Meet Alumna Lisa Hua ’14, Middle School Math Teacher- Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School

September 7th, 2018 by aclauson

Meet Alumna Lisa Hua ’14, Middle School Math Teacher- Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School


Name: Lisa Hua

Class Year:  2014

Current Title/Employer:  Middle School Math Teacher / Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School

Graduate Degrees (if applicable):  Master of Art in Teaching (M.A.T.)

In one sentence, what does your job entail?

I get to get to know kids, guide them to learn more, in different ways, and get better as people as well as learn about myself everyday.

What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross?

I knew I was going to go into teaching at graduation because as a Junior, I interned at the Nativity School of Worcester and by Spring of my Senior Year, I had been accepted into their Teaching Fellowship program. I was so excited, and also knew I would be able to pursue my Masters in Teaching as part of that program.


How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?

I knew after interning there for a summer and then continuing to volunteer during my Senior Year. I felt that it was such a great place for the kids and was such a close-knit community, which is what I’m all about and what I wanted to be part of during my time on campus.


What were you involved in when you were on campus?

I was involved with a few things on campus. I was a work-study student, so some years I worked at Cool Beans, CrossRoads and the Deli, and in my last couple of years I worked at the Cantor Art Gallery and the Music Library. I also worked as a Resident Assistant for my sophomore and Junior years and was Head RA in Lehy my Senior Year. For all 4 years, I was on the EBoard for LASO (Latin American Student Organization), I really enjoyed all the things I was involved with, it really shaped my outlook on time-management, balancing finances, and making sure to diversify all your experiences on campus.

What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

My career decisions were not highly reliant on my major. I was a Chinese major and a Chemistry minor. I chose those 2 things because I really enjoyed both and both played a huge role in who I was becoming at HC. They both taught me to not only learn what those areas of study have to offer, but to really take a look at the culture of each and how that plays together to make me as a person. As I mentioned before, I started being interested in teaching as an intern and volunteer, and I was interested because I was able to branch out and be more part of the community, on campus and beyond.

What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?

So many! I use time management all the time and it keeps me sane! If I wasn’t so involved on campus while I was at Holy Cross, I don’t think I would have ever been able to manage teaching at a charter school with an extended day program, going to Graduate School and being able to still have a social life all at the same time. I also learned how to really think outside the box and be resourceful, which I use all the time in the classroom and in my personal life. If I did everything conventionally or because I thought I had to as opposed to because it made sense (even if it sounds crazy!), then I would not have been able to experience everything that the unexpected brings. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!

What advice do you have for students on campus today?

My best advice would be to work hard and finish what you start. I have had many people who have motivated me to see through to the end of things on campus and since I’ve graduated. Even if you are not sure if it’s for you, you never know how everything can work out. Don’t think you are wasting time, think you are gaining experiences and be proud that you saw the end. If it doesn’t work out after you’ve met a logical goal, then you can go in a different direction. If you see it through and it changes your thinking on it, you might have found your calling, or at least are getting closer.

Meet Alumna Erin Connolly ’17, Program Assistant- Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

September 7th, 2018 by aclauson

Meet Alumna Erin Connolly ’17, Program Assistant- Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation


Name: Erin Connolly

Class Year: 2017

Current Title/Employer:   Program Assistant/ Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

In one sentence, what does your job entail?

I work to educate the public and policymakers (Congress) on nuclear nonproliferation and fissile materials policy by helping plan and host various events; writing op-eds; and briefing congressional staffers on our issues.

What and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross?   

I wrote a paper my sophomore year for a National Security course that argued for a nuclear deal with Iran. While writing this paper, I found myself fascinated by nuclear nonproliferation policy, and it quickly became one of my favorite topics. I left for France, and when it came time to look for an internship I applied to the Center, using that paper as my writing sample. This internship was a vital introduction to the nuclear policy world. It provided me with the foundational knowledge to succeed, but also allowed me to make professional connections while living in Washington, D.C. which is how I learned about the position I currently hold.

How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?

My internship experience solidified my interest in the nuclear nonproliferation field. I was able to explore the various facets, from Iran, and North Korea, to U.S. nuclear weapons in Europe. My current position involves much more engagement with Congressional staffers and fissile materials; basically I do a lot of work to answer any questions they may have about highly enriched uranium, plutonium stockpiles, preventing nuclear terrorism and other subjects in this domain. We host dinners for members of Congress, a unique opportunity for engagement and education. I also am able to continue writing, I was fortunate enough to get a piece published in Teen Vogue with a colleague in the field (and former fellow intern!) and it’s great to connect with people my age on these issues.

What were you involved in when you were on campus?   

I was involved in the Purple Key Society, which is quite helpful for my event planning now; HEAL, Model UN, SPUD site leader, Manresa, Gateways, Appalachia trips, and I also worked in the History department,

What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?   

I was an International Studies major, French minor and Peace and Conflict concentration. I loved engaging with the multidisciplinary major and in some ways I continue to do that. I am always continuing to learn in this job — from policy to science — and that is something I loved at Holy Cross and am grateful I get to bring that into my career.

What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?   

The importance of asking questions and networking. It is always better to ask questions and do something correctly then to do it wrong. Everyone would prefer to answer your questions than to have you do it again! And networking is one of those things I did not want to believe was important, but it is. Maintaining relationships and connections is so key, especially when you work in a field that’s small like mine! I knew D.C. had gotten to me when I began bringing cards to every happy hour because you just never know who you will meet — friends of friends are great connections.

Meet Alumna Victoria Aramini ’14, Planning Manager at TJX

September 6th, 2018 by aclauson

Meet Alumna Victoria Aramini ’14, Planning Manager at TJX


1. What is your favorite thing about your job and/or TJX?

My favorite thing about working at TJX is how people oriented the company is – I get to work with so many different types of people in a given day. I love my work as a Planning Manager where I help my team affect the bottom line, working to save the company money through our team’s allocation strategies.


2. What are some company perks that you enjoy?

In the summer the company participates in “Summer Fridays” where we get out at 1:oo pm – this is definitely one of the best company perks in my opinion!


3. Tell me about a cool opportunity you’ve taken advantage of or experienced while at TJX.

Travel is a big part of the TJX experience for associates in planning and buying. I’ve been fortunate enough to travel with various teams to different parts of the US.


4. How would you describe TJX’s philosophy on job growth/talent management?

At TJX, development is very important and associates drive their own development. There are a wide range of opportunities for associates to take advantage of – both formal (in the classroom) and informal (on the job).


5. What advice would you like to give to current Holy Cross students about their job/internship search?

As companies evaluate you and your qualifications as you search and apply for internships, make sure you take the time to evaluate these companies and think about their culture, their development offerings, etc.

What I Learned from My Summer Internship

August 31st, 2018 by aclauson

Copywriter Intern at Olympus Scientific Solutions

By: Katie Flanagan ’19


I love writing. I love finding the perfect combination of words and that moment of inspiration when the words seemingly flow seamlessly from your fingers, a veritable freight train of thought. So last year, I went into my internship search for the summer of 2018 with one single thought: “This is my last summer before graduation. This is the summer I need to figure out what I want to do with my life, so whatever internship I do has to be perfect.” I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do when I graduated from Holy Cross in 2019 (eek!), but knew that I wanted to write.


After applying to a multitude of internships in marketing and publishing, I was offered a position as the Copywriter Intern at Olympus Scientific Solutions America in Waltham, MA. If the name “Olympus” sounds familiar, maybe you’ve used one of their cameras or interned at a hospital that used their equipment. Even though I didn’t really know exactly what I would be doing as a copywriter, or what I would be writing about, I was both nervous and excited to start my first “real” marketing internship.


My first day arrives, and after the compulsory HR paperwork and meetings, I meet with my manager, Phil. My first meeting with Phil instantly calmed my nerves. Having never taken a marketing course, I was worried I would be woefully unprepared and had the irrational fear that my new employers would realize just how unfit I believed myself to be for this internship. Meeting with Phil proved to me how wrong I was. He showed me that a marketing or business degree, though important, can be useless if you can’t communicate, if you can’t write. We bonded over our mutual love of puns and enthusiasm for the Oxford comma (it’s important, people!), and then I was set to work.


My first assignment was to write a blog post. The post was going to be used as part of an upcoming marketing campaign, and all I had to do was make sure to highlight our products. Simple enough, right?




The topic for my first blog post was glass recycling. Now, I don’t know about you, but I knew nothing about glass recycling. I had a vague idea that the colors needed to be separated, but other than that? Nothing. And so started my research.


Throughout the summer, I wrote over twenty-five blog posts that followed this same pattern. I would have to write a topic I knew nothing about, do an immense amount of research, then write what was essentially a two page persuasive paper that somehow tied in one of our products. I wrote about topics like the aforementioned glass recycling, airplane safety, car manufacturing, bridge safety inspections, and so many more. I also edited blog posts written by engineers and product managers, and application notes that had been translated from Japanese and French to English about antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity (now say that 5 times fast!).


Now, I should mention, I’m an English major. The last science course I took was in high school, and I’m a senior in college now. My scientific knowledge is limited, and I’m an English major for a reason—science is not my favorite subject. In my internship, I was writing and researching scientific topics every day. To me, the topics I was writing about and editing for were the very last thing I found interesting.


And that brings me to my main point: what I learned this summer. Because this post is already long (I’m an English major, what can I say?), I’ll try to be succinct:


Don’t blind yourself to opportunities by looking for the “perfect” internship

Copywriting was not even on my radar before this summer, and now I’m actively looking for copywriting jobs for graduation


It’s okay to not exactly love what you’re doing, as long as you’re learning

I did not enjoy the content of what I was writing about, but I loved learning about copywriting. I loved using my creative writing skills in a marketing environment, and I found a strange amount of joy in editing others’ work.

I learned that copywriting is something I actually would like to do upon graduation

And if you’re not crazy about pursuing a job in the same field as your internship, at least now you know that it’s not something you want to work towards


A liberal arts education is invaluable

I know, I know. You’ve heard this so many times before, why am I saying this again? Humor me. When I thanked Phil and Hilary (the director of the Marketing/Communications team) at the end of the summer for taking a chance on an intern with absolutely no marketing experience or classes, they said hiring me was a no-brainer, because I could actually write. I could communicate my ideas, something a liberal arts education requires. By requiring me to take classes outside of my major, Holy Cross gave me the critical thinking skills and communication skills students who only take business classes or only take biology courses lack. And that’s what makes us as Holy Cross and liberal arts students stand out.


Meet #CrusaderIntern Juliana Holcomb ’19

July 12th, 2018 by aclauson


1. Tell us about where you are interning and the kind of work you are doing.


This summer, I am a data and research intern at The Ana Grace Project (AGP) in New Britain, CT.  The AGP was born out of the tragedy at Sandy Hook School on December 14, 2012 that took Ana Grace Marquéz-Greene’s life.  Her mother, Nelba Marquéz-Greene, started The AGP to remember her daughter by promoting love, community, and connection for every child and family. Shortly after the tragedy, the Marquéz-Greene family adopted the slogan “Love Wins” which serves as the name for their three lead initiatives: Love Wins partner schools, professional development, and music & arts. At The AGP, I am a data and research intern. In this role, I collect data from Love Wins programs and the State Department of Education as well as write research manuscripts to display the impact of the Love Wins programs on elementary school students, teachers, and administrators in New Britain, CT. Additionally, I have also been able to contribute to the Ana Grace Project Professional Development and Implementation manual and to a collection of Love Wins therapeutic techniques and curriculum extension activities.


2. Give us an example of how you have applied your academic learnings to your internship?


As double Psychology and American Sign Language (ASL)/Deaf Studies majors at Holy Cross, I have been exposed to many different research studies and methodologies through my courses. Through this, I became familiar with the format, content, and creation of APA-style manuscripts.  Holy Cross has also provided me with a sufficient knowledge of ethics, especially in data collection and research. This knowledge has helped me substantially while navigating ethical standards, confidentiality, and informed consent. This strong foundation in psychological research from Holy Cross was extremely beneficial in my internship as I was able to “jump right in” to contributing to the in-process manuscripts. In particular, Professor Bukatko’s “Developmental Psychology” course at Holy Cross allowed me to learn about child and adolescent development and how trauma, violence, and emotional dysregulation impact children. The material in this course has been extremely prevalent for my internship. Overall, my academic learnings have been very applicable to my internship.


3. What has surprised you about being an intern?


Throughout my internship, I was surprised (and excited!) to be included in different organizational, task force, and committee meetings throughout the state. In these meetings, I was able to learn from and connect with prominent individuals within the fields of education, psychology, early intervention, marriage and family therapy, mental health counseling, and more. These opportunities have also allowed me to see the types of committees and organizations I can be involved with in my future career.


4. How is this experience influencing or connecting to your future career plans / goals?


As I am pursuing a career in clinical mental health counseling, this research internship is providing me with many beneficial experiences and useful skills that support my future career. Research allows me to witness the effectiveness of certain therapeutic models, techniques, and programs as well as witness current trends in mental health. In addition, my internship location is in a multi-purpose behavioral health agency which allows me to meet individuals in a range of different professions in the field of Psychology. These interactions have provided me with further discernment in my future profession.


5. Any internship advice to pass on to other Holy Cross students?

I would tell future interns not to be hesitant or embarrassed to ask questions. When entering a new position, it is normal to be a little nervous but can seem overwhelming if you are not understanding everything at first. Your boss, supervisor, and peers who are already established at your organization will be able to provide you with answers to your questions and will probably be happy you asked! For example, I learned early on in my internship that my organization uses a lot of abbreviations. On the first day, I was bombarded with SEL, TIC, MFT, LCSW, LMHC and felt pretty confused at first. Each time my supervisor said an abbreviation or term I was unfamiliar with, I asked him to clarify. Not only did this allow me to fully understand what he was saying, but it also showed him that I was attentively listening and willing to learn.

Bridget Kelly ’18 on the Importance of Networking Events

April 16th, 2018 by aclauson

Bridget Kelly ’18 on the Importance of Networking Events 

Describe your experience at the Healthcare, Medicine & Science Industry Night?

I was unable to attend the Healthcare, Medicine & Science Industry Night but I saw the flyers posted around the Biology building advertising which alumni would be in attendance and some information on their current career.

How did this experience influence or connect to your future career plans/goals?

I recognized a familiar face on the flyers, Heidi Boland. We had Neurobiology together my sophomore year/her senior year and I knew we were both Biology majors and Neuroscience minors. I read on the flyer that she is employed at Mass General Hospital as a Clinical Research Coordinator so I reached out to her as I had been applying for this position in various departments at MGH. She was more than willing to pass on my resume to her superiors, as well as give me incredibly helpful tips for interviews, the job, and post-grad life. I received three interviews from different departments thanks to Heidi and got an amazing job offer from it.

What is some helpful advice you learned from alumnus or the event?

Heidi advised me to send a follow-up email after phone interviews. A few hours after my first phone interview, I followed Heidi’s advice and emailed the hiring manager to say thank you for taking the time to speak with me; she immediately responded with an offer for an in-person interview. She also told me to reach out to any HC alumni and connections I may have for any job opportunities.

Why would you recommend networking and attending the event to other students?

I would recommend networking and attending events put on by the Center for Career Development because I would never have received the opportunity to interview at MGH and ultimately this job offer if I had not reached out to Heidi. I am so grateful to the Center for Career Development for giving me the resources to connect with alumni in my future career field.

What to Say When the Interviewer Asks if You Have Any Questions

April 13th, 2018 by aclauson

by: Nerelly Checo ’18


Interviewer: “Do You Have Any Questions?”

First and foremost, when an interviewer asks, “Do you have any questions?”, you most likely feel like



And your interviewer is just looking at you like:

However, the best thing to do (and probably the last thing you actually want to do) is to ask a question. If you don’t, the interviewer might think that you are disinterested in the position.

The best thing to do is prepare by coming to the interview with a list of questions. Make sure you have more than one question as some might get answered during the interview.

Do not ask about:

  • Salary and benefitsThis is something you should hold off to until after, especially if this is your first interview with the company.
  • Personal life and gossip → Don’t ask about the interviewer’s family or home. In addition, don’t ask about any mutual connections you may have at the company.
  • Complicated and multi-part questions → Keep your questions straightforward and quick. You want to make sure the interviewer doesn’t get overwhelmed or bored. Don’t ask questions that are separated into different parts- you can always follow up with an email if you are left with any questions.
  • Things you can answer on your own →  It is essential to do your research before going to the job interview. It looks bad if you ask the interviewer something that you could have easily looked up on the company’s website or Google.

According to The Balance, Forbes and The Cut, here are a few questions you should ask:

    • What is a typical day and week like?
    • What are the biggest challenges of this role?
    • Thinking back to people you’ve seen do this work previously, what differentiated the ones who were good from the ones who were really great at it?
    • What are you hoping for your new hire to accomplish in the first three months on the job?
    • What is the history of this role? Is it a new position, or was there someone in the job before?

Make sure to take a deep breath and just relax.

As long as you follow these tips about what NOT to do or ask any of our example questions, you shall be okay. And remember, this is only one part of the interview. You can demonstrate your skills in the other questions- this is not the determining factor of your job (unless you really ask something bad).

Meet Alum Kathleen Corrigan ’12, Manager, Portfolio Construction

April 13th, 2018 by aclauson

Meet Alum Kathleen Corrigan ’12, Manager, Portfolio Construction at Financial Architects Partners


Name:  Kathleen Corrigan

Class Year:  2012

Title:  Manager, Portfolio Construction

Organization Name:  Financial Architects Partners


In one sentence, what does your job entail?

Designing large life insurance portfolios for ultra affluent families


What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross? How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?  

I was first exposed to the finance industry through the Holy Cross summer internship program. After my junior year, I completed an internship at an investment banking firm in New York and loved the experience of working in a fast-paced environment with a steep learning curve.  My internship experience affirmed my decision to start my professional career in financial services, though I delayed my starting point by 1 year so that I could volunteer with JVC after graduation.

When I started looking for full time jobs, I tried to find opportunities by leveraging the career center, family, and friends. Since I was planning to move up to Boston, I also decided to enlist the help of a staffing firm, which proved to be a really helpful resource in my search and connected me to my first (and current) employer.  It was through the interview process that I could tell the role and company would be a good fit. The people who interviewed me were really smart and asked tough questions, but the whole process was very conversational and I felt comfortable being myself. That feeling has continued to this day and there has been significant opportunity for growth along the way.


What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Purple Key Society, Spring Break Immersion Program


What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

I was an economics major and enjoyed how the coursework emphasized both quantitative and analytical skills. I wanted to start my career in an area where I could utilize these skills, while also learning how businesses operate, so financial services seemed like a good fit.


What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?

Written and oral communication skills. As an analyst, I was always comfortable with numbers, but the ability to communicate complex ideas in a simple, easy-to-understand way is so important and can set you apart from your peers. Whether it’s an email that you send to a more senior person at your company, or having to explain a technical concept to your client, never underestimate the importance of good communication skills.


What advice do you have for students on campus today?

Be involved as much as you can outside of the classroom, and don’t be afraid to try something new!  Holy Cross has so many unique opportunities that you can take advantage of, which might end up being some of your favorite memories.