Does a career in the fast paced, high-octane world of Wall Street appeal to you? If you are among the many college age people who strive for an interesting and rewarding job in the center of the global financial market, now is the time to act. There is more to Wall Street than the stereotypical overcrowded stock-trading floor depicted in the media. In fact, a lot of Wall Street is focused on intense market research, alternative assets, crypto taxes, and essentially any “high-rollers” in the financial sector. What are the steps that can set you on the pathway to finance jobs in the world’s financial capital, New York City? How do people maximize their chances of not only landing such jobs but also thriving in them?
Everything begins with research. Wall Street candidates should study the job market to get a feel for what’s available and what’s not. The single most important component of success is a college degree. Getting and financing one should be uppermost in your mind. Next, seek internship positions with financial services firms while in college, get any paid industry experience you can, and start building a professional network from day one. Consider the following suggestions to land a career-oriented position on Wall Street.
Research New York’s Financial Job Market
The NYC financial job market is massive, but it constantly changes based on economic forces and the national employment situation. Some years are better than others, but there’s always room in entry-level positions for hard-working college grads who want to establish themselves on a career trajectory. Spend time combing through the job posting sites and various open position listings to get a feel for who’s hiring and what the going entry salaries are.
Get a College Degree
Successful Wall Street workers have college degrees in their respective fields. That generally includes subjects like finance, accounting, statistics, IT, and mathematics. The entire New York City financial industry is based on both corporate and retail economic concepts, which is why hiring agents place a high premium on degreed applicants. For most prospective students, the biggest college-related challenge is not academic but financial. Paying for school can be as tough or tougher than earning decent grades and graduating.
The good news is that there are plenty of scholarship awards available. It makes sense to use a platform that allows people to search for opportunities and apply for them from the same location. That’s why Going Merry scholarships are a top choice for future students who want to get enough money to pay for an entire degree program or a portion of one. The bottom line is that recipients can offset their educational costs by applying for all scholarships for which they qualify.
Intern for a Brokerage or Investment Banking Firm
The fastest way to make a direct connection with a potential employer is to secure a paid or unpaid internship position. Many of Wall Street’s largest firms hire graduating interns. It’s a win-win for the companies because they don’t have to do extensive background checks, and they get employees who are already partially trained. For interns, the situation is ideal because they get solid experience and have a chance to land a job quickly and easily as soon as they graduate.
Get Paid Experience in the Industry
The way college students spend their summers can make a major difference in their long-term job prospects. Getting any kind of relevant experience in finance can be a boost for the job-hunting process after graduation. If you don’t reside in NYC during the summer months, focus on taking jobs with brokerage firms, banks, mortgage companies, and insurance companies. Aim to stick to the financial services sector whenever looking for a summer job during college.
Start Now Building a Professional Network
It’s never too early to develop a professional network. Even if you’re a first-year college student, start collecting names and contact information for anyone who might be able to propel your career along. That means including people like counselors, instructors, teaching assistants, summer employers, supervisors on internship stints, and older students who go to work for companies that are on your radar.
Don’t fall into the trap of waiting until graduation day to start building a network. Students have plenty of opportunities to amass a significantly large list of names well before they receiver their diplomas. Treat the list as a living organism by contacting people on it and touching base with them. Try to call, email, or text each person on the list every few months.