Networking in New York
Annual networking trip connects students with alumni working in finance
by Kristyn Pankiw '14
February 15, 2012
Connections made during the Career Center’s annual finance trip to New York led to job offers with two of the “Big Four” international professional-services networks for seniors Sherry Zhong (left) and Swechha K.C. (right).
A day spent networking in New York City has paid off for three seniors. Swechha K.C. ’12, Ouwen Xia ’12 and Xiaoyu "Sherry" Zhong ’12 have landed jobs at big-name international firms after connecting with Dickinsonians during the Career Center’s annual finance trip.
It’s an opportunity that Navneet Garodia ’07 anticipates each year. He has participated as an alumnus in the finance trip for the past five years and finds it beneficial for students and alumni. “It’s a chance to give back to the college community,” says Garodia, a business consultant at Ernst & Young, one of the "Big Four" international professional-services networks. “I know what it’s like. I’ve been in their shoes and I want them to be successful.”
Landing the job
Last semester, 29 students participated in the trip and networked with Dickinson alumni and parents who currently work in finance in New York. They visited Barclays Wealth, where John Devlin ’90 hosted an information session and 11 alumni from the classes of 1977-2010 met with students to share their experiences. The students also attended a networking reception and panel discussion at the New York Athletic Club, where recent graduates discussed life after college and provided insiders' perspectives on working and living in New York.
“I was looking for ways to establish connections and learn more about the consulting aspects of finance,” says K.C., an international business & management (IB&M) and economics major from Nepal who was connected with Deloitte Consulting after an impressed Garodia forwarded her resume to a friend at Deloitte. “A week later I was contacted for an interview and, after multiple rounds, I was offered a position as a project analyst," continues K.C., adding that she will move to New York after graduation and begin her job in June.
Zhong, an IB&M major, and Xia, an IB&M and computer-science double major, also were offered jobs after meeting Garodia on the trip. Xia and Zhong, both from China, accepted jobs with Ernst & Young, where they will work as technology consultants in the Financial Services Office.
Earning a spot on the trip is a highly selective process. Only about half of the students who apply each year are accepted.
“Standout students are those who exhibit an understanding of finance and can articulate their passion,” says Amity Fox '04, Dickinson’s internship coordinator. “Throughout the selection process, we meet with each student to discuss his or her genuine interest in finance-related careers. For juniors and seniors, we also look for at least one internship experience,” she says.
Fox describes the finance trip, which has taken place since 2006, as a collaborative effort between the Career Center, the Offices of Alumni & Parent Relations and College Advancement and alumni and parents of Dickinsonians working in New York.
“The Career Center is grateful to have such supportive and engaged alumni and parents,” she says. “They truly make a difference and contribute to the success of our students.”
Paying it forward
Garodia is proud to help fellow Dickinsonians in their job searches and continues to praise the college for providing meaningful networking opportunities such as the finance trip.
“When I was a student, I also took part in the trip,” Garodia says. “I love the concept of it and love the exposure that students get, meeting so many alumni.”
Garodia says Dickinson students make desirable job candidates—something that was apparent at the networking reception.
“They get better every year. They ask the right questions because they know what they’re looking for,” says Garodia, who attributes these qualities to their education. “Dickinson really prepares you for the future.”