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- Roles and Work Environment
- Skills and Training
- Industry Timeline
- Find Opportunities
- Applying and Interviewing
- Additional Industry Resources
Roles and Work Environment
The financial services and banking industries are multifaceted, therefore many job functions exist, catering to a variety of skills and interests. Below is a sample of roles you might find:
Examples of Finance & Banking Jobs:
- Investment Banking Analyst
- Financial Analyst
- Securities and Commodities Broker
- Financial Planner
- Portfolio Manager
- Venture Capitalist
Companies within the financial services and banking industries are in the business of managing money; in this sector you’ll find large conglomerates as well as smaller firms.
Examples of Sectors within Finance & Banking:
Skills and Training
- Problem solving and analytical skills
- Research skills
- Critical thinking skills
- Attention to detail
- Strong written and oral communication skills
- Strong quantitative background
- Time management and ability to multitask
- Ability to work in fast-paced environment
- Strong financial modeling skills
- Bachelor's degree required for entry-level position
- MBA may be required for upper level position
Recruitment for some positions within the financial services industry, primarily at large bulge bracket investment banks, are on an accelerated recruitment timeline. This means employers will begin coming to grounds during early spring of 2nd year to start the process of recruiting students for their 3rd year summer internship. It is important to play close attention to programs and events surrounding this so you don’t miss out on a valuable opportunity to learn more about this industry and network with employers.
- Early Spring/Summer
Large bulge bracket investment banks recruiting 2nd years for 3rd year summer internships
- Late Summer/Early Fall
Other financial services firms, including some small investment banks, recruiting 3rd and 4th years for internship and full-time positions
A great way to gain experience is through participation in CIOs; whether you join a business-related CIO or gain relevant experience in another CIO (join the finance committee, apply for a finance role!) the skills and experience you gain will be valuable to employers.
- Alpha Kappa Psi
- Virginia Venture Fund
- Women’s Business Forum
- Smart Woman Securities
- Sales and Trading Group - McIntire
- Global Markets Group
- McIntire Investment Institute
- Virginia Finance Institute
- Vault Guides (accessible via Handshake)
- eFinancial Careers
- Deal Book
Applying and Interviewing
First impressions are critical in the job search. Developing and executing the best documents possible will help to ensure that you put your best foot forward and increase the likelihood of progressing to an interview. Make sure to check out the Resumes and Cover Letters sections of the website for helpful advice and sample resumes and cover letters.
- Keep resume to 1 page; expect recruiters to spend less than 30 seconds skimming your resume. Your font can go as low as 10 pt and margins as low as .5
- Keep it simple -- no colors or crazy fonts.
- Highlight your academic achievements; include your GPA.
- Show relevant finance experience; financial modeling and valuation skills are great to highlight. Quantify results wherever you can.
- Include the right keywords and phrases. Many banks will use applicant tracking systems to review your resume and push you to the next round (i.e. a computer is looking at it, not a person). Look at the job description and pick out keywords and skills to include in your resume to increase your chances of advancing.
- Make sure to include a variety of activities you’re involved in. Employers want to see that you’re a whole person with varied interests, so no need to only include “business related” involvement.
If you have never interviewed before, make sure to check out the Interviewing section of our website. Log on to Handshake to schedule a mock behavioral interview with a career counselor for practice. Follow-up after every interview with a thank you email or letter.
Many banks will conduct virtual interviews for the first round. Often you will be required to pre-record an answer within a set time limit. Visit Interview Stream to practice virtual interviewing.
Visit the Business Community resource page (accessible via Handshake in Career Center > Resources > Business: Business, Technology & Entrepreneurship) for access to finance interview practice guides.
Additional Industry Resources
Blogs and Industry Research
- Check out VAULT Guides (accessible through Handshake) for detailed information on specific industries. The following guides may be of interest to you:
- Vault Career Guide to Investment Banking
- Vault Career Guide to Sales and Trading
- Vault Career Guide to Middle Market Investment Banking
- Vault Career Guide to Leveraged Finance
- Vault Guide to Finance Interviews
- Vault Finance Interviews Practice Guide
- Street of Walls
- EY Webcasts
- Mergers and Inquisitions
- Wall Street Oasis (accessible via Handshake in Career Center > Resources > Business: Business, Technology & Entrepreneurship)
Resources for Diverse Student Populations
- Most banks have programs that focus on diverse populations. Check Handshake, the Business & Technology Slack Channel, or the employer websites for more information.
- Guide for Job Seekers & Workers with a Disability
- Certified Financial Planners Board of Standards
- CFA Institute
- Insurance Information Institute
- Financial Industry Regulatory Authority
- Corporate Finance Institute
- Financial Management Association
- American Finance Association
- Association for Financial Professionals
- Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association
- American Association of Finance and Accounting
- National Association of Personal Financial Advisors
- Investments & Wealth Institute
- Investment Advisor Association
- Global Association of Risk Professionals