New MBA Class Gets Insights in New York City Company Visits
In a spacious meeting room at J.P. Morgan's corporate headquarters in New York City, a group of Yale SOM's new full-time MBA students gathered for some advice on August 16. The students listened as a panel of company associates shared insights on navigating the transition from business school to a major investment house.
"Company culture is very important. When I was in your shoes, it sounded like a lot of fluff, but it really does matter," said Irvin Sha, one of the four J.P. Morgan associates who met with students. "While you're out there recruiting, you need to figure out who would be a good fit for you."
J.P. Morgan was one of 16 firms hosting members of the MBA Class of 2014 for educational sessions designed to help students explore career options. The visits, part of SOM's annual Orientation program, featured a range of companies cutting across sectors.
"These company visits illustrate Yale's commitment to professional development right from the very beginning," said Kat Currie '14, who visited Deloitte. "It's a great opportunity for exposure to new sectors, especially at the beginning of the MBA process."
Students began their day in New York with a luncheon at the Yale Club, where Laszlo Bock '99, senior vice president for people operations at Google, addressed the group. The day ended with a reception at the New York Stock Exchange.
Panelists at J.P. Morgan stressed two themes they called crucial to the recruiting process for students: selecting the right job "fit" and appreciating the increasingly global nature of business today. "There's a focus on bringing diversity of thought into J.P. Morgan," J.P. Morgan analyst John Wang said. "Our investment banking team is global; all of our other groups are fully global and fully integrated. You need to be able to work with people not only in the U.S., but also abroad."
Following the panel discussion, J.P. Morgan associate Gerard McGeary '09 joined a smaller group for one of several breakout sessions. "I want to give this class a sense of what brought me to J.P. Morgan and how my time at SOM helped," McGeary said.
Cleveland Coleman '14 found the breakout sessions especially valuable. "Getting to know the people at a company is of paramount significance when recruiting," Coleman said. "While I can independently research a company online, culture must be assessed in person."
Other New York City firms hosting student groups included Time Warner, Citibank, Goldman Sachs, McKinsey, TIAA-CREF, Boston Consulting Group, and Estée Lauder. Srikar Prasad '14 visited Thomson Reuters, hoping to gain a more concrete understanding of how MBA skills are deployed there. "We talked with the VP of technology," Prasad said. "The distinction between technology leadership and business leadership of technology became clearer to me. It is amazing that SOM has alumni across so many companies in such a variety of positions, from senior managers and corporate executives to recent graduates."