Finance students sit at Bloomberg terminals in the Capital Markets Lab

Exploring Financial Economics

MSF junior and seniors played a pivotal role in the expansion of the Exploring Financial Economics (EFE) program. As a result of the program’s success with placing students in top financial services firms, it is now being offered to every first-year finance major. The goal is to provide all incoming finance majors with educational sessions where they learn about the different jobs in finance, identify a fitting area and prepare to compete for junior summer internships that result in full-time placement.

As the number of EFE freshmen and sophomores rose to over 250, MSF students volunteered to facilitate supplemental sessions, serve on panels and offer resources for younger students to enhance their knowledge base.

Through sessions like “How to Pitch a Stock” and “Valuation Methods,” freshmen were able to build a foundation of concepts they will be expected to use in an interview and professional setting. Freshmen were also able to hear first-hand about the resources they should use during their decision-making process, the factors older students considered when deciding to pursue their particular area, and the type of work they can expect during a junior summer internship. Without MSF students’ insights, it would be hard for younger students to think critically about the various job options in the industry and create a structured plan for themselves.

Once EFE students reach their sophomore fall, they are instructed to pick their top two placement areas and create a timeline for intensive interview preparation. As a supplement to Mrs. Herring’s behavioral interview module, MSF students conducted mock phone screen interviews and in-person practice sessions with EFE sophomores. This allowed for sophomores to practice their responses in a low stakes setting and get immediate feedback. Older students’ feedback is extremely valuable to younger students as they have recently completed recruiting processes themselves.

Additionally, MSF students who serve as leaders in finance student organizations partnered with EFE to promote the program to its members and offer technical training workshops. Leaders in the Gator Student Investment Fund (GSIF) facilitated sessions on various technical topics, such as discounted cash flow, relative valuation, accounting, and leveraged buyout. This partnership ensures that EFE can reach as many first-year finance students as possible, and that organizations may identify potential new members through these structured training programs.

Through their involvement, the MSF juniors and seniors are positively impacting EFE’s expected outcomes. They have been selfless in the amount of time they are giving back to younger students. They are always providing feedback and ideas for further professional preparation. They also serve as role models for the EFE students. It would be hard to imagine the program being as successful without their participation.

The complete set of sessions facilitated by MSF students for EFE in 2021-2022 are:

–           Day in the Life of a Summer Intern Panel

–           Decision Making Panels (5)

–           “Face-Off” sessions to practice behavioral interview responses (2)

–           GSIF Technical Training Workshops (4)

–           How to Follow Markets (2)

–           How to Pitch a Stock from Start to Finish

–           Mock Phone Screens

–           Overview of the Financial Services Industry

–           Roundtable Sessions and Lunches (4)

–           Valuation Methods

–           Values Panels (2)