This summer I had the pleasure of working as an intern with BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager with $7.4 trillion in assets under management. I decided to do an internship in finance because on top of engineering, I really enjoy investing and financial markets. My role was in the Global Markets Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) & Index Investing group. I spent a lot of time looking at investment products called ETFs which are funds that often track an index and trade on stock exchanges like the New York Stock Exchange or Nasdaq.
The internship was supposed to be 9 weeks but was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the changes and virtual environment, the internship was still a rewarding experience. Having never taken a finance course, I spent a ton of time learning about how ETFs work and trade. My favorite part was looking at market changes and developing a better understanding of market events. I found that you can take engineering skills and apply them to different industries. The general analytical and quantitative framework plus an emphasis on teamwork and collaboration can open new doors in hidden places.
In the future, I hope to keep working with financial markets and hopefully in-the-office one day! If you want to pursue finance with your engineering degree, it is definitely possible and worth pursuing in my experience. Some good places to learn more are publications like the Wall Street Journal (free subscription with your usc.edu email) or YouTube. There are even some USC clubs like Trojan Investing Society to get more involved.