Derek's Summer at Goldman Sachs
Derek is a rising senior at Howard University studying finance. He currently interns in the New York Investment Banking Division’s Consumer Retail & Healthcare Group at Goldman Sachs and, last summer, interned in the Financial Institutions Group.
REALIZING THIS IS WHERE I WANT TO BE
14 AUG 2015 - NEW YORK
Leaving my mid-summer review, I felt confident. All of my hard work was paying off. “You’re tracking very well – keep up the good work,” I was told. Of course I was also given advice for ongoing growth. Returning to my desk, I wrote my feedback on a sticky note and placed it on my computer so that I could focus on action steps for improvement.
I think of working at Goldman Sachs as more than just a job – Goldman Sachs is a holistically rewarding experience that works to maximize your potential not only as a financial analyst, but as a leader and pioneer. During Week 8, I had the opportunity to present to a group of high school students for LaunchPAD, one of the firm’s high school diversity programs. I spoke to them about my background, college experience and path to Goldman Sachs. While speaking to them and answering their questions about the firm, investment banking, and a career in financial services, it became clear to me that this is the place for me.
The live deal that has taken most of my time this summer has been intriguing and intense. I have had deep exposure to our client’s sector of the healthcare industry and discounted royalty stream analyses. I was tasked with decoding in-depth analyses, building presentations and understanding patents. In addition, as the highlight of my summer, I was invited to a client meeting and personally met the chairman of the company. It was the ultimate inspiration and motivation for me. I can’t believe we’re at the end.
SETTLING INTO MY ROLE
28 JUL 2015 - NEW YORK
The past two weeks have been quite eventful, from a team and overall firm perspective. Our deal picked up aggressively during week five, allowing me to see more deeply into the healthcare industry and our client’s specific business. I was able to touch qualitative and technical projects, and felt that I was able to truly add value.
We have sat in on talks by senior leaders and other inspiring figures throughout our internship and, most recently, Gary Cohn, the firm’s COO, sat down to have a “Fireside Chat” with all of the interns. His remarks were extremely inspirational. When explaining to us why he has stayed so long at the firm, he spoke about having the chance to directly engage with some of the most interesting and unique people in the world. The same day I sat in on a lecture on Alzheimer’s with PhD professionals moderated by the head of the Merchant Banking Division.
I have become significantly more efficient with my work, and the job feels more natural to me each and every day. The firm has an abundance of resources, so whenever I have some down time, I study, read and practice to increase my knowledge and widen my skill set. In addition, I feel that each day I am forming stronger bonds with my intern class. They are some of the smartest and most amiable people I have ever met. It’s easy to see that the bond that we have contributes to the quality of our work and internship experience. I have my mid-summer review coming up and am excited to receive formal feedback that I can apply to my work.
HITTING THE GROUND RUNNING
09 JUL 2015 - NEW YORK
Several weeks into my role as a returning investment banking summer analyst at Goldman Sachs in New York, the summer has been moving surprisingly quickly, and the last four weeks in the Consumer, Retail & Healthcare Group have been quite an experience. Staffed on a live deal my first day on the desk, I have had the chance to do meaningful work that I can call my own. Later that same week I had the opportunity to sit in the same room as a CEO to hear about a possible transaction by a multi-billion dollar company.
The firm’s flat environment is refreshing and reassuring – my buddy, analysts and mentors have been extremely involved from the first day, sharing insights, giving advice, providing explanations and always being willing to help with technical and functional walk-throughs. The co-head of Investment Banking took the time to speak with us last week, and gave a significant amount of insight into investment banking, Goldman Sachs and also into building a career. Through training and on the job experience, I find myself learning more about not only the firm and my group, but the industry as a whole.
Mid-summer reviews are coming up soon, and I am looking forward to receiving tangible feedback so that I can focus on these points as I receive more technical work in the coming weeks.