Meet Alum Nick Bodurian ’12, Associate Investment Professional at Prospect Capital Management

Name: Nick Bodurian

Class Year: 2012

Title: Associate Investment Professional

Organization Name: Prospect Capital Management

1.  In one sentence, what does your job entail?

I am responsible for sourcing and conducting due diligence on private middle market companies seeking financing from both an equity and debt perspective.

2. 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?  

The summer after my sophomore year at Holy Cross I did my first internship at GE Capital as part of the Financial Management Program (“FMP”).  This internship opportunity came through the Career Development Summer Internship Program.  I did a second internship at GE Capital the following summer, and then accepted a full time position at GE Capital in FMP post-graduation.  What made me decide to pursue a career in corporate finance initially was my strong underlying interest in evaluating businesses, coupled with my accounting background from Holy Cross.  Second, I really enjoyed the corporate culture at GE, and knew that the company had a strong track record for educating their employees and building future business leaders.  Both aspects of my first job/employer came out to be 100% true.  I significantly expanded my core technical finance skills and analytical thinking, but also my soft-business skills such as effective and efficient communication and negotiating.  All of what I have described were “planned events” through my initial time at GE Capital.  However, life always brings unplanned events as well.  In my last rotation on FMP, I was given a role in underwriting in a business unit that provides leveraged loans to middle market companies being bought by private equity sponsors.  I very much enjoyed this role, and realized that this was the career path that I wanted to pursue (versus traditional corporate finance).  However, General Electric, and in particular GE Capital, was going through large changes at the time. There was a meaningful corporate strategy shift to move away from “banking” and focus the conglomerate on industrial businesses.  Part of this decision by GE was due to stricter regulatory requirements on large financial institutions after the financial crisis of 2008/2009.  While the traditional banking sector overall faced new regulations at the time, there started to be large growth in the alternative asset management sector, such as private equity and debt firms.  I saw this trend occurring (similar to other colleagues and friends) and decided to seek my next role at a private markets firm.  This led me to my second employer, Partners Group, a global private markets asset manager.  The key takeaway from this “career event” for me is to make sure you get the most out of “planned events” in your career, by doing the best you can do at the job you are currently doing, because “unplanned events” will occur which will bring difficult decisions, but also promising career opportunities!  How one performs in “planned events” I’ve noticed in my career dictates how one can effectively adapt to “unplanned events” in a career.

3. What were you involved in when you were on campus? 

I was very involved in the Economics department when I was on campus, since I was an Economics-Accounting major.  I was part of the Student Advisory Committee for several years, and then was the Chairman of the committee for two of those years.  I was also a member of the Economics department Honors Program, in which I spent over a year conducting research and writing a senior thesis on the financial crisis of 2008/2009.  I was a member of the pre-business program, and took a class that managed the student managed endowment fund.  I volunteered through the SPUD, and was a member of the club baseball team for four years.  In my last two years, I was also a tour guide for the admissions office.

 

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

I majored in Economics-Accounting.  While I did not pursue a traditional career in public accounting, accounting is the basis for everything in finance.  Any student interested in pursuing a career in finance must have a strong understanding of accounting.  But that does not and should not preclude non-accounting majors from pursuing a career in finance. While the technical background has surely helped me in my career, the analytical thinking and quantitative analysis aspects of accounting is what has helped me the most in my career.  In my field, it is crucial to evaluate businesses from both a quantitative and qualitative aspect, using fact-based assertions to drive investment theses.

 

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

Aside from my technical background, one of the most important skills that I developed meaningfully at Holy Cross is my written and oral communication skills.  A lot of my job is being able to effectively communicate both internally and externally.  From an internal perspective, I have an investment committee that I present my investment opportunities to in order to obtain approval to make an investment.  In order to obtain approval, I must effectively communicate the merits and risks of an investment opportunity, through both quantitative and qualitative assertions, written in memos and orally in person.  There is always “pushback” from investment committee members—that is their job, to play “devil’s advocate” and ask as many questions as possible.  Therefore, it is a continual iterative process when evaluating investment opportunities, and being able to effectively communicate internally is paramount to success.  I must also work with external parties, such as management teams and other private equity firms, in order to negotiate the best possible deal terms for my firm.  It’s a craft that I am still developing and will be developing over the rest of my career, but Holy Cross established a strong foundation to start building from.

 

6. What advice do you have for students on campus today? 

If you are interested in pursuing a career in finance, your GPA will be the first criteria that a company will look at from both an internship and entry-level job perspective.  In other words, make sure you are getting it done in the classroom first!  Second, I would recommend taking quantitative classes, such as accounting, economics, math, or pre-business/investment classes. Holy Cross students largely have strong communication skills, due to the rigorous liberal arts curriculum in place, but it is important to develop quantitative reasoning skills in order to be “on par” with competing students from business programs at other colleges and universities.  Third, develop a strong interest in reading the Wall Street Journal or New York Times business section.  I’ve probably learned the most about financial markets, the economy, and businesses from reading the WSJ.  Pick topics that interest you, and read as much about them as possible.  Read the articles critically, and if a concept does not make sense to you, don’t just move onto the next article, figure out the concept because that is how real learning takes place.  Lastly, it is absolutely crucial to understand what it means to have a career in finance, and there are many different types of careers in finance.  Talk with as many people as possible, ask them what they like and dislike about their jobs.  People love talking about themselves, so “pick as many brains” as possible.

Meet Alum Doug Moringiello ’11, Trade Support Analyst at GMO

 

Name: Doug Moringiello

Class Year: 2011

Title: Trade Support Analyst (Fixed Income Trader’s Assistant)

Organization Name: Grantham, Mayo, Van Otterloo & Co (GMO)

 

1. In one sentence, what does your job entail? 

Analyzing and confirming all fixed income and derivate trade details between GMO and external parties (brokers, custodians, vendors, etc.)

 

2. 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 fortunate at Holy Cross to meet alumni who I admired and respected who worked in finance. After speaking with upperclassmen and alums who worked in the industry and getting a better understanding of what they do I became interested in working in finance. While a fair amount of networking and job searching was ad hoc I am excited that the Career Services department is working to develop a robust Finance Community, I think this will serve students and alumni well with a formalized network.

 

3. What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Varsity Track & Field, Work Study Program (Kimball and Athletic Department), and Habitat for Humanity

 

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

Major: History. History seems to be an unconventional major for someone working in finance, but the skills I developed through my major, specifically understanding and weighing multiple points of views, building an argument based on historical analysis, and being able to distill volumes of reading into short, concise assertions have been invaluable. Being able to consume mountains of research, connect an investment thesis with specific transactions, and constantly re-evaluate the impacts of current events on financial markets are skills I use every day, and I am uniquely positioned to do so because of my time majoring in History at Holy Cross.

 

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

Persistence – The best traders I’ve met aren’t the best traders simply because they’re smart; they are the best traders because they’re driven and relentless in their pursuit to improve and constantly challenge themselves. Holy Cross is incredibly challenging academically and you may feel like your grades are not reflective of your effort. The ability to persist and challenge yourself to improve everyday is a unique skill Holy Cross students are able to develop. Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable – In any profession you’re going to have to be able to perform under pressure. On a trading desk you’re going to have to get comfortable in a constantly changing environment. Every day is going to be different and its essential that you be able to adapt. I learned a lot about myself living in a cold Boyden Street apartment for two years – if you navigate your time socially and academically at Holy Cross you’re going to develop the skills needed to succeed.

 

7. What advice do you have for students on campus today?

 Be honest with yourself about what interests you and what you are passionate about. Be sincere with both your peers and people you meet in the industry. Leverage the Holy Cross community as much as you can. I’ve found alumni are always eager to share their story with students who take the initiative and are sincerely interested in learning.

Meet Alum Devin Brown ’12, Private Equity Investment Professional- Kelso & Company

Name: Devin A. Brown

Class Year: 2012

Title: Private Equity Investment Professional

Organization Name: Kelso & Company

 

1. In one sentence, what does your job entail? 

At Kelso & Co, I am responsible for all aspects of deal screening/evaluation, execution, and post-transaction portfolio company management including, initial investment screening and evaluation, financial modeling and valuation, due diligence, transaction structuring, and portfolio company management.

 

2. 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? 

One of the benefits of attending Holy Cross was the diverse student body.  This allowed me to glean perspectives from students who pursued opportunities in a broad array of industries and fields.  I kept an open mind, asked questions, and once I had enough insight to develop my own perspectives, I began reaching out to Holy Cross alumni in my specific field of interest.  The key here was keeping an open mind and not being afraid to ask questions.  My first tangible experiencing was developed through an alumnus that allowed me to shadow him for a day at Morgan Stanley.  I was able to spend time observing the environment, analyzing the temperament of employees, etc. which ultimately helped me decide whether the job would be a good fit.  While I did not end up at Morgan Stanley, I did accept a similar position at Wellington Management.

 

3. What were you involved in when you were on campus?  

I was a member of the Men’s Varsity Basketball Team and the Student Athletic Association.  I also participated in the Summer Business Program and Finance Boot Camp.

 

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

At Holy Cross, I majored in Psychology.  As an individual with a passion for building and cultivating relationships, the Psychology major was a means to enhance a natural interpersonal skill set and interest in the mind and behavior.  Despite my major, I intended to pursue a career in the financial services industry.  In order to accomplish this, I knew that demonstrating and supporting my interest in financial services would be critical.  As such, I supplemented my major with business-related courses such as Economics and Financial Accounting and business-related clubs and activities such as the Holy Cross Summer Business Program and the Finance Boot Camp.  This combination allowed me to speak to my soft and technical skill-sets, both of which are critical in the financial services industry.

 

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

In Private Equity, how do you decide whether to acquire a company?  Or how much to pay?  Once you acquire the company, how do you decide whether to expand the Company’s operations into a new region?  Which region(s)? How do you decide to build a new product?  To add a new service?  To charge more or less for a product or service?  To close down a manufacturing plant?   These are types of decisions that Private Equity professionals make on a daily-basis.  To do this successfully, one must be able to think critically and analytically.  Holy Cross taught me to do both.  Holy Cross challenged me to think outside of the box, to approach topics from new angles, to venture outside of my comfort zone, and to examine the causes and effects of my actions and the actions of others. Most importantly, Holy Cross taught me to think creatively.

 

6. What advice do you have for students on campus today?

My biggest pieces of advice are to take advantage of the on-campus resources that Holy Cross has to offer, develop meaningful relationships with classmates, and engage with alumni.  Holy Cross has some of the most esteemed professors, faculty-members, and staff in their respective fields.  They are willing to go above and beyond and to provide academic support, career advice, mentorship, etc – take advantage of this.  Also, Holy Cross students are some of the brightest students in the world.  You may not know it, but you could be sitting next to the next big CEO, teacher/professor, president, professional athlete, judge, doctor, philanthropist, photographer, artist – you name it.  Use your time on campus to get to know people, especially those from different backgrounds and forge genuine relationships.  Your classmates will serve as lifelong friends and may also help your career one day.  Lastly, Holy Cross has one of the best alumni networks in the world.  It is one of the reasons many of us chose the Cross.  Alumni love hearing from students and are here to help.  Reach out as soon as you are comfortable, forge relationships, ask questions, and be genuine.

Meet Alumna Sydney Latour ’17, Analyst – Asset Owner Sales, J.P. Morgan

Name: Sydney Latour

Class Year: 2017

Title: Analyst – Asset Owner Sales

Organization Name: J.P. Morgan

 

In one sentence, what does your job entail? 

I am an analyst on the Asset Owner Sales team and support senior client executives who sell securities services to corporate and public pension funds, endowments and foundations.

 

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?  

Events such as the Finance Intern Panel and Women in Business Conference sparked my interest in finance. I began networking with alumni during my sophomore year and continued those conversations during my first internship in financial journalism between sophomore and junior year. Following that internship, I completed an academic internship at a financial planning office and a summer internship at J.P. Morgan. My internship experience confirmed my decision to pursue a career in finance.

 

What were you involved in when you were on campus? 

 On campus, I was involved in Finance Club, study abroad and Purple Key Society. I also worked as a Peer Career Assistant in the Center for Career Development.

 

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

 I was a double major in Economics and Spanish. I knew I wanted to pursue a career that required strong analytical and communication skills.

 

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

 Time management and resourcefulness. Holy Cross taught me to balance various commitments and meet deadlines. The liberal arts education also taught me to think broadly and critically when approaching a project.

 

What advice do you have for students on campus today? 

 Leverage the resources Holy Cross offers, such as the HC Network, Career Development drop-in hours and alumni job shadowing. Reach out to alumni early to establish a professional network. Take classes that interest you and don’t forget to enjoy the fastest four years of your life!

Meet Pat Burpee ’17, Equity Sales Trader, KeyBanc Capital Markets

Name: Pat Burpee

Class Year: 2017

Title: Equity Sales Trader

Organization Name: KeyBanc Capital Markets

In one sentence, what does your job entail? 

I trade domestic stocks for hedge funds.

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 had a few job offers throughout my senior year but none felt like the right fit, so I actually graduated unemployed. I continued interviewing around the Boston area (where I’m from) and received another offer. I was ready to accept the new proposal, but in the middle of July a HC classmate mentioned an opening within KeyBanc’s Los Angeles office. I put all my eggs in one basket and went for it. I interviewed a handful of times with KeyBanc, and accepted an offer by early September. Essentially it was the perfect storm of events and I am fortunate it all worked out. I have been with KeyBanc since October ’17.

What were you involved in when you were on campus? 

Varsity Golf & Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC)

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

Economics; I wanted to work in finance after college and figured the economics major provided the best route to ensure employment within that industry.

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

Definitely the ability to quickly digest and discern information. HC is not an easy school and there are nights when you are overwhelmed with work. Similarly, there are times during the work day when the stock market is hectic and volatile. Being able to decide what details are important and what items are extraneous is critical when talking to clients. I guess I honed those skills with four years of practice in Dinand.

 What advice do you have for students on campus today? 

A lot of my friends graduated with job security, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t freaking out come May. If you’re one of those individuals who’s still looking for a job come the spring or summer, just know that it’ll all work out. I recommend using the HC alumni network as much as possible. I have never encountered an alum who didn’t have 5 minutes to spare for a fellow Crusader.

Meet Alum Ron Zuvich ’07, Senior Vice President at Emet Capital Management, LLC

Meet Alum Ron Zuvich ’07, Senior Vice President at Emet Capital Management, LLC

 

Name:  Ron Zuvich

Class Year: 2007

Title: Senior Vice President

Organization Name: Emet Capital Management

 

1. In one sentence, what does your job entail?

My main responsibility is to acquire distressed housing assets which qualify for tax-exempt municipal bond financing in the sectors of affordable housing, student housing, and senior housing.

 

2. 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 attended several financial services networking events on campus and made a concerted effort to network with alumni in financial services. I had several family members in the financial services field and relied on their experience and guidance as well. I also attended an interviewing workshop and went on as many interviews for relevant jobs as I could.  The ability to act with confidence throughout an interview is a critical skill that does not come easy to some but can be developed with practice.

 

3. What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Spring Break entrepreneurship program (would highly recommend), club soccer, intramural basketball, working as an accounting tutor.

 

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

I was an Economics/Accounting major and felt it provided me with a core base of knowledge that would open up several potential paths in the world of financial services (Capital Markets, Asset Management, Investment Banking). I knew from my coursework that working for a Big 4 Accounting firm was personally not for me, so I began networking and applying to jobs primarily at major banks in Capital Markets and Investment Banking. Through some contacts developed at Citi, I obtained my first job working as a capital markets analyst for Citi in 2007.

 

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

Writing and critical thinking – it is not essential, in my opinion, to have a degree in Finance or a business-related major in order to procure a job in the Financial Services industry. I spend much of my time writing detailed credit memos which require performing significant research, identifying investment risks, and thinking outside the box. This is the value of a liberal arts education – always thinking of ways to challenge the status quo and adding value by bringing a fresh approach to old ideas.

 

6. What advice do you have for students on campus today?

Networking is more important than ever in today’s world – have coffee, a quick call, or lunch with alumni in the field of your choice as often as you can, even if there is no immediate job prospect from such a contact. Be active on the good forms of social media (LinkedIn) and mindful of your presence on other forms of social media (Facebook, Instagram, etc.). Don’t be afraid to ask your contacts for help – most people are far more receptive than you might expect.