SEMI Visits The Blackstone Group
~ Thoughts from a SEMI Scholar - Class of 2006
On June 28th, NYSSA's SEMI program brought us to a special meeting with Blackstone Group in New York City. Basking in the mystic and glamour of visiting arguably the greatest Private Equity powerhouse in the world, we enter a conference room where breakfast is served. A Blackstone Principal, two Directors, and an Associate greet us and walk us through a presentation that they had prepared for us, two-dozen SEMI students. You could feel the content in their expressions--they looked like they were having fun at their jobs, they were being challenged, and they didn't want to work anywhere else. After the brief, but insightful presentation, the group opened up for questions. We felt like kids in candystore. How many college juniors get a chance to ask a Blackstone Principal a question about their investment strategies? Charismatically, the PE gurus answered our questions, leaving us in even greater awe than before. The Blackstone trip was just one example of the SEMI experience. The SEMI program is one of the premiere summer programs on Wall Street. The students at SEMI not only receive exposure to great firms but also to some of the greatest mentors in the financial services world.
On June 28th, NYSSA's SEMI program brought us to a special meeting with Blackstone Group in New York City. Basking in the mystic and glamour of visiting arguably the greatest Private Equity powerhouse in the world, we enter a conference room where breakfast is served. A Blackstone Principal, two Directors, and an Associate greet us and walk us through a presentation that they had prepared for us, two-dozen SEMI students. You could feel the content in their expressions--they looked like they were having fun at their jobs, they were being challenged, and they didn't want to work anywhere else. After the brief, but insightful presentation, the group opened up for questions. We felt like kids in candystore. How many college juniors get a chance to ask a Blackstone Principal a question about their investment strategies? Charismatically, the PE gurus answered our questions, leaving us in even greater awe than before.
The Blackstone trip was just one example of the SEMI experience. The SEMI program is one of the premiere summer programs on Wall Street. The students at SEMI not only receive exposure to great firms but also to some of the greatest mentors in the financial services world.
2005 Scholarship Winners Announced
NYSSA and the SEMI Committee would like to congratulate the four winners of the 2005 Heloise Ham Scholarship Award:
Krish Daftary, NYU
Karina Leventul, Pace
Irina Novoselsky, NYU
Ken Wee, NYU
While all of our '05 students worked very hard, these four students, through their extra efforts in promoting the program, their exemplary participation, and their zeal for the study of finance, rose to the top of the SEMI Class of '05. They received outstanding recommendations from their internship supervisors and mentors, whose feedback was instrumental in the decision process.
We hope that their participation in SEMI will only continue to grow as SEMI alumni.
Best Money Movies?
Forbes has a slideshow featuring the 10 best movies about money.
Of course, Wall Street is #1.
But what about 2-10?
Do you agree, disagree?
Here's what I think is missing:
The Hudsucker Proxy
Also, I think its a bit of a stretch to say that "American Psycho" was about money.
-Charlie O'Donnell, SEMI Chair
A Don't Miss NYSSA Event: Careers in Fixed Income
One of the great benefits of the SEMI program is that you also become a student member at a 50% discount. Membership enables you to go to a lot of NYSSA events for free, including the Career Chats. This month's Career Chat is "Careers in Fixed Income".
|Note: Change of Date
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
|5:45 p.m.-6:30 p.m. Networking
6:30 p.m.-8:00 p.m. Presentation
New York University
|SPEAKER||Margaret Cannella, Managing Director and Director of Americas Corporate Research, JPMorgan Chase & Co.|
William A. Hayes
Members Free | Nonmembers $20
|Wednesday, February 8, 2006 |
Walk-ins cannot be accepted.
Check out other great NYSSA events on their webpage.
We want to hear from you... What do business students need?
At NYSSA, we are thinking a lot about ways in which we could provide students enough resources to that they would like to join our professional society. We think that the SEMI program is a great offering, but not everyone is going to be able to participate in it.
We'd like to hear from you, the students. What are the "holes" in your career preperation? What could a group of professionals in your industry to do help you? What could NYSSA do for you that would make it worth you becoming a student member?
Thanks in advance for your answers, and please accept, as gratitude, a helpful career tip:
Searching for jobs?
Forget Monster, Careerbuilder, and Hotjobs.
Indeed has ALL the jobs from each of those databases PLUS all the jobs from Craigslist, NYTimes, and most of the Fortune 1000 corporate websites... all for free!!
Indeed. One search. All jobs.
Leveraging the SEMI Network Through LinkedIn
One of our goals for the coming year is to leverage the experience of our prior SEMI participants--all of the students who have graduated from the program and gone on to very successful careers. In addition, we would like to strengthen our ties to the various speakers, internship supervisors, and other professionals who have help us build SEMI into what it is today--the premier experience for NYC area college students interested in Finance.
One of the ways we are doing that is through a website called LinkedIn.
LinkedIn enables you to connect with and take advantage of your network--and extended network--of professional contacts. Plus, it allows others that you trust a way to benefit from the contacts that you bring to the table in a safe, secure, and permissions-based way.
If you are a SEMI alumni, a mentor, an internship supervisor, or a SEMI event speaker, join our network by clicking here. If you are already a LinkedIn member, attaching your profile to our SEMI group is easy. Just remember to add to your bio how you were connected to SEMI.
If you are not yet a LinkedIn member, take some time to join, and input a short bio and your job history.
Here's why:When you complete a LinkedIn profile and join our network, it will allow current and future SEMI students a chance to visualize all of the fantastic professionals that have participated in SEMI in some way. They will be able to contact you (through the website only, until you accept their invitation and provide only the contact information you wish) for professional advice or perhaps to ask for some insight into your firm. Its a way for you to contribute your experience in a very small, non-time consuming way.
If you want to provide even more value back to the program, and really take advantage of the LinkedIn network, you can invite other professionals to connect to you, and in turn, make those professionals available for introductions to SEMI students. Its all permission based and all up to you. So, for example, if I'm connected to Mary the Investment Banker at Goldman, and a SEMI student needs interviewing advice for Goldman, that student can see Mary's profile and ask me for an introduction to her. The student needs an introduction, because Mary has her permissions set to only be contacted by people she knows and those who are connected to people she trusts. With Mary's permission, I can pass that student on to her.
Joining our LinkedIn network enables every participant to receive lasting value through our extended network. If you do choose to invite others to the network, we suggest writing to them outside of the site first, explaining what you use LinkedIn for, lest your LinkedIn generated invitation look like spam.
If you know of any SEMI participants, especially alumni and mentors, who are not connected to our group, please pass this blog post to them by copying this link and get them to join the network.
Record Year for SEMI Applications!
As of midnight Friday, we received 119 applications for the 2006 SEMI program, which is a new record for us. We would like to thank everyone who supported our marketing efforts, especially this year's SEMI students who helped spread the word.
We'll get to work on going through everyone's answers and hopefully interview invites should go out next week.
The Best Opportunity Around for Undergraduate Finance Majors
REMINDER: SEMI APPLICATIONS DUE BY MIDNIGHT, FRIDAY OCTOBER 28, 2005!!
Click on the > arrow below the image to play the video. (Requires Quicktime)
What is SEMI?
SEMI takes place over the summer, meaning that this year's application are for the summer of '06. If you make the program, we will match you up with a mentor. Mentors are investment professionals from the New York Society of Security Analysts. They can be portfolio managers, traders, analysts, bankers, etc. If you don't have many professional contacts, SEMI is a great way to start building your network.
Each week of the summer, SEMI students attend a breakfast about a different aspect of the financial world. If you're not sure what area of finance you're interested in, these can be invaluable.
At the end of the summer, the best SEMI students have a chance for a scholarship. Since we take only around 25 students a year, those that make the program have a good chance at being rewarded.
The application is short, so make sure you get it in by this Friday. There is no excuse for an undergrad interested in finance not to apply for this program. Please make sure you fill out the answers in Word or another word processing program first, and then copy and paste into the form, so as to avoid typos and spelling mistakes. Questions? Contact Charlie O'Donnell, SEMI Committee Chair.
The Top 10 Reasons NYC Undergrads Interested in Finance Should Participate in SEMI
1. SEMI gives NYC-area Finance majors in their sophomore or junior years an opportunity to meet, learn with, and learn from their counterparts--the best of the best--at St. John's, Fordham, NYU, Seton Hall, Rutgers, Baruch and Pace. These students can either be the best resources in your professional network in the future, or the competition on the other side of the table. Isn't it better to get to know them now?
2. Every student gets match up with a mentor from NYSSA--the largest group of financial professionals in the New York City area--over 9,000 strong! Your mentor will be dedicated to answering all of your tough questions--and all of the easy ones, too. Plus, getting a NYSSA mentor volunteering for SEMI is better than cold calling people who may or may not be interested in sharing their wisdom.
3. SEMI won't affect your summer internship. Its an "add-on" program that meets before work and on your own time with your mentor, so you can do both SEMI and a summer internship--really beefing up your resume for next summer.
4. Breakfasts on portfolio management, trading, fixed income, networking, etc, etc... SEMI is the best overview of the finance world you can get. Each week, SEMI invites speakers to share their career expertise with you over breakfast, answer questions, and give you the inside scoop on how to make it in finance.
5. A stock picking contest with cheesy prizes! All SEMI students compete in our Steeplechase. The prizes this year? For the winner, a DVD copy of Wall Street. For the loser? A copy of Reality Bites.
6. A chance at a scholarship worth up to $5,000. Hmm... should we have listed that first? No, we shouldn't have, because if you think the $5,000 is the most valuable thing you can get out of SEMI, you're probably not SEMI material. We're into long term thinkers who realize that the contacts they make at SEMI are going to be worth a lot more than a few grand over the long term.
7. SEMI is a target for recruiters. In the past, we've had banks, buyside firms, rating agencies and lots of others specifically ask us for SEMI students for internships and fulltime jobs. This year, we're formalizing that effort and working on expanding our reach and visibility on the street, so SEMI students are sure to get a look from the top firms.
8. Free food! Each week there's a breakfast. We have a mixer to meet the mentors initially with refreshments. We have a pizza party. We have a closing dinner. Given the cost of eating in NYC on an intern's salary, why turn down all this free nourishment--and all of the great conversation that goes with it.
9. SEMI is well publicized within NYSSA. Each student, if they make SEMI, will become a NYSSA student member at a substantially discounted price ($30). That gives them access to NYSSA's online member database of over 9,000 professionals, each of whom gets NYSSA's monthly newsletter. The newsletter has featured SEMI prominently in the past and the SEMI program is visable within the NYSSA community, giving you an automatic connection to NYSSA members.
10. Because its all about differentiation... Each year, hundreds of thousands of students will apply for jobs with top finance firms. Only about 25 of them will be able to say they participated in this program. That gives SEMI students a leg up for recruiting. That being said, can you think of a good reason NOT to participate in SEMI?
The application is short and shouldn't take you that long to complete. Apply here by October 28th. If you are selected, interviews will take place at night on November 16th and 17th.
SEMI Wraps Up 2005 with Annual Dinner at Reuters
This years SEMI program finished up strong with an enjoyable dinner at the Reuters offices in Times Square. Students, internship supervisors, speakers and mentors all got a chance to share good conversation over good food and mark the transition from SEMI and their internships to upcoming classes.
Awards for the Steeplechase stock selection contest were given out to both the winner and the person with the toughest luck. The winner received a DVD copy of Wall Street and the loser received Reality Bites, but it was all in good fun.
The best part of the dinner was that it was obvious that a lot of relationships made over the summer will be continued. Many of the internship supervisors hadn't known about the program beforehand and indicated interest in recruiting SEMI students next year. Mentors and students alike seemed intent on continuing their summer conversations.
Here are some photos from the event:
NYSSA's SEMI blog is offered as a resource to Student Members in the SEMI Program to discuss their experiences and impressions of the program. NYSSA makes no representation concerning the accuracy, completeness, or timeliness of information conveyed by the SEMI blog. Opinions stated in the SEMI blog are statements of the individual making the post, and do not constitute statements by NYSSA.