When I tell my friends that my dream job is modeling, I often receive confused looks. However, as much as I’d like to walk the runways of Milan, I’m speaking of financial modeling. This type of modeling is a combination of mythical financial formulas, obscure assumptions, and a little bit of luck, which in the end helps you find a reasonable valuation of the company you’re analyzing. The interesting thing is that even though people get paid hundreds-of-thousands of dollars to build these forecasting tools, which are known as Discounted Cash Flow and Leveraged Buyout models, they’re only taught in a handful of colleges. These colleges, known as target schools by the banks, are where they primarily recruit from for analyst positions out of college.
However, coming into college at a non-target school, I didn’t even know investment banking or private equity existed. It was through sheer luck that in the second week of school, I walked into the wrong room one evening when I was looking for where my school’s trivia night was and stumbled upon a group called the Securities Society. From there, the senior president took me under his wing and set me up with a plan for the next two years to find a Sophomore summer internship.
And that’s where I am now. If you had told me two years ago I would be working under two Harvard Business School graduates receiving personalized financial model training, I wouldn’t have believed you. Every day working for Ellery expands my knowledge, and thus future opportunities, exponentially. But knowledge is meant to be shared, and my ultimate goal is to be a mentor to another Freshman someday, as my mentor was to me. But that’s a long ways away, while I’m young I’m going to focus on my modeling career.