Funmilayo Associate, Global Investment Research Technology Technology division, London

Joined GS: Intern, 2008; Full time, 2010
Studied: Electrical Engineering, Howard University (Wash., D.C.)
Interests: Running, Traveling

I’ve done a lot of web development, desktop development, and scripting projects… I love working with these different technologies!

I was born and raised in Nigeria. From the time I was in high school, I knew I wanted to go to school abroad, so I applied to Howard University in Washington, DC and received a full scholarship. I graduated summa cum laude in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering.

Goldman Sachs was recruiting on my campus, and I knew a couple of upperclassmen and alumni who had interned with or were employed by the firm. Nonso was one of the people who came back to talk about his experience. It was very helpful to hear a first-hand account of the type of work one could do at Goldman Sachs.

As a summer intern in 2008, I had the opportunity to work on really complex projects. I was part of the Global Investment Research (GIR) team within the Technology Division, and I was building software that the business intended to use. We went through an entire software development lifecycle: gathering requirements, talking to business users, developing a proposal for a new platform—and then actually building it. It was a web-based project, so I got to work with Java and JavaScript, both completely new technologies for me at the time. It was fascinating, and I started to think this was something I could enjoy doing after graduation, even though I was studying electrical engineering. I was invited to return as an intern the following summer, with the added responsibility of bringing my fellow interns up to speed.

I joined Goldman Sachs full time in July 2010 and began the 6-week New Analyst Programmer and Associate training program (also known as the NAPA Program) in the Technology Division. After training, I joined the Global Investment Research (GIR) Technology team.

GIR Technology is responsible for building software that optimizes the workflow of GIR analysts, among other things. We build platforms and systems that make it easier for analysts to generate and publish investment research for clients. One example is GIR's iPad app—available to clients in the Apple App Store—which our team built and deployed. 

While I’m primarily a developer, my official job title is analyst/developer. The analyst part is important because my day-to-day role requires planning and research for projects, not just coding. I’ve done a lot of web development, desktop development, and scripting projects, and I’m currently doing some iOS (mobile) development. I love working with these different technologies!

It’s exciting to dig in and learn how things work. Recently I’ve sought out more opportunities to work with our business users directly and learn their needs firsthand. This helps me challenge some of my own assumptions about whatever it is I’m working on.

I’ve had great mentors since I was an intern. I attended intern events hosted by the Women in Technology affinity network and the Technology Black Network—it was a great way to connect with people across the firm. I’ve also found some mentors through Howard University’s alumni network at the firm, as well as through formal career development programs that Goldman provides.

Recently I relocated to London, where the GIR Technology team was hiring in anticipation of a number of projects that were coming up. It was a great opportunity for me and a chance to work on new and exciting projects in a different region. 

London is great! I didn’t think I would enjoy it because when I first visited three years ago, it was freezing cold in the summer—I had to buy winter clothes!  But I was open to moving here, and this time around I’m really enjoying it. London is very different from New York, and it offers so many unique things: the food, the activities and experiences, the weather. I love the proximity to the rest of Europe.

I took up running last year in New York after a few years of being fairly inactive. I found it was a great way to start the day. In fact, I've just registered for my first half-marathon in October 2014 here in London. I read about Alex in Investor Relations and her performance in last year’s marathon—she’s really inspirational, and it would be great to do just as well as she did! I have been making more of an effort to challenge myself to take up new things.

Not long ago, I went on a ski trip to Andorra. Having grown up in a tropical climate, it’s something I only ever dreamed about!  Now that I’m in Europe, I hope to do a lot more traveling in the next couple of years. I’d like to visit Paris again, and I’m looking forward to seeing Italy and Spain for the first time—I want to absorb as much culture as I can.

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