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From Marine to Investment Banker

Story and Images by Nicole Thomas

It has 73 offices around the world and primarily recruits from Ivy League schools. Last year, only three percent of 267,000 applicants were hired. Of those offered a position, 90 percent chose to join. Goldman Sachs is the top firm for investment bankers, attracting and hiring the best talent from around the world. Kyle Keeran landed his dream internship and job by being one of six interns last summer in Goldman Sachs’ Los Angeles office, and will return as a full-time employee following his college graduation.

At the moment, Keeran is a graduating senior in the Fisher College of Business with a specialization in Finance. Prior to attending Ohio State, Keeran grew up with small-town life in Canal Winchester, Ohio before spending four years with the United States Marine Corps. During his four-year enlistment, he spent time in Southern California, Afghanistan, Japan, and Australia. His interest in finance was sparked when he began investing his own money at the age of 18. During his free time, he would also help his fellow marines with their personal budgets. From there, Keeran gravitated from personal financial management to investment banking as a career path.

At Ohio State, Keeran became involved with student organizations such as Buckeye Capital Investors (BCI) and enrolled in Fisher Futures. Through the Office of Career Management, this highly competitive program helps prepare finance students for the world of investment banking through interview preparation and networking trips. Keeran learned many skills and strategies for entering this job field, but he says an individual’s uniqueness is an important part of the job.

“For those trying to go into investment banking, take the time to figure out what will make you different from the rest of the competition,” Keeran says. “When you find out what makes you different, translate it into how it will make you successful.”

Keeran started his internship search last fall with his sights set on the Goldman Sachs Investment Banking Summer 2015 Analyst internship. After applying online and being one of seven students selected for an on-campus interview, Keeran began preparing. He spent hours reading and studying, as well as reaching out to other investment bankers. After successfully making it through his first round interview, he went to Los Angeles for “Super Day,” a series of three 30-minute rotational interviews. By the end of the day, he received an offer for the internship.

From there, Keeran was off to New York City a week of training, and then to Los Angeles for the remainder of his internship. On his first day, Keeran was put on a deal team, a group of 4-6 analysts and managing directors who worked with the firm’s clients.

Keeran knew going in that a life in investment banking would be arduous. He worked 8 a.m. to midnight six days a week, averaging about 70 hours a week. Keeran was surprised by how much responsibility he was given within Goldman Sachs, such as deals ranging from an Initial Public Offering to client-specific modelling analysis. With these responsibilities, he felt he was able to add a lot of value to the team and their projects. Still, the part of his internship that Keeran values the most is the people with which he spent time.

“It was an incredible experience to be surrounded by such motivated, intelligent and humble people who were more than willing to help whenever I asked,” Keeran says. “Beyond the financial modeling itself, the people I had the opportunity to work with were my favorite part about working at Goldman Sachs.”

Even though Keeran received and accepted an offer for a full-time position after college, he isn’t mentally checking out of his remaining time at Ohio State. Rather, he’s focusing on his involvement as BCI President, helping other students pursue their interests in investment banking by critiquing resumes, giving mock interviews and teaching students about the industry.

credit nicole thomas-2

2 Comments on From Marine to Investment Banker

  1. Thanks for taking the time to post. It’s lifted the level of debate!

  2. Really informative post.Much thanks again. Want more.

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