Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
placeholder article
placeholder article

Alumni Return To Offer Finance Career Advice

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Northwestern chapter.

On Thursday, November 17, over 45 Northwestern students interested in finance attended Alumni Connection Series: Careers in Finance. Co-sponsored by NCA- The Student Alumni Partnership and the Northwestern Alumni Association, the event was an eye-opening panel discussion with alumni who have found success in the finance world.
The alumni were an impressive group with a broad range of experiences, from working in investment policy to being the former New York State Treasurer.

Even with all of their expertise, the alumni were still relatable. Ronald Jin (McC02, KSM13), Credit Research Group Intern, PIMCO joked that his day-to-day life would seem very familiar to students since he’s currently completing his degree at Kellogg.
They also shared their wealth of knowledge with the attendees, some of which were eager to find out how they have forged a path in the high-stakes world of finance.  Others have no interest in doing anything finance-related after graduation, but the alumni still had plenty of helpful insight. They thoroughly explained their jobs and gave examples of their typical days.
For Diane Faunda (WCAS92, KSM98), Managing Director at J.P. Morgan, most of her days include traveling for face-to-face client meetings. Eugene Sunshine (WCAS71), Senior Vice President for Business and Finance of Northwestern, spends a lot of his days working with various NU deans.
The alumni at the ACS: Careers in Finance spoke confidently of their life choices and were enthusiastic about answering each question to help students be proud of their life choices, too.


Peter Custer (WCAS04), Vice President/Financial Investment Professional for Goldman Sachs, wanted students to realize that part of being proud of their life choices would come with simply having a job that pleases them.
“I do like weekends, but on Monday morning I’m happy to go into work,” he said. “I like being the person people turn to when they have problems. For a doctor, those problems are medical. For me, they’re financial.”
When asked if they each had one piece of advice they would like to give students, the answers were simple, yet powerful.
Faunda emphasized the importance of seeking out mentors.
Sunshine made it clear that “relationships last forever” and that thinking long-term is paramount to succeeding career-wise.
“However you define success in your job is really important. You get a real high out of it,” he added.
Custer spoke about the importance of knowing when you don’t know something, and being humble enough to admit that.
“If you don’t know, you don’t know. Prove your ability to learn,” he said.
After the panel discussion, students and alumni networked and got to know one another better for almost an hour.  
Although the finance-related conversations and advice were excellent, the alumni’s willingness to reach out to other members of the Northwestern community was the true success that night.

Her Campus Placeholder Avatar
Casey Geraldo


Casey Geraldo is a junior at Northwestern University. She is journalism major, with a broadcast concentration, and a history minor.Casey coaches gymnastics, and in her spare time, she is usually babysitting, watching TV, eating candy and ice cream or spending time with the people she loves.Follow Casey on Twitter! @caseygeraldo