George Mason UniversitySchool of Business

Finance Student Takes on Internship in the Concrete Jungle

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SaylesEmily Sayles is interning in the concrete jungle of New York City, immersing herself in what it means to be a busy New Yorker in the Financial District by day, navigating Wall Street walkers and investors in the afternoon, and debriefing research with seasoned financial analysts by night. Sayles is a rising sophomore studying finance. She obtained her internship through networking early and asking the right questions about gaining work experience in finance.

Sayles is a financial research intern with Argus Research Company, an independent investment research company that provides unbiased and impartial analysis of the U.S. equities to the professional financial services market.

Sayles is mainly responsible for obtaining research for analysts, updating and evaluating earning models for companies, and composing reports. Sayles’ internship has given her the opportunity to attend the NASDAQ with analysts for an on-air round table, visit and participate in the New York Stock Exchange with brokers, and work closely with select IPO brokerage firms.

Her interest in finance started early, when she realized her strengths in critical problem solving. “I like the more ‘what if’ situations to solve, so finance really intrigues me as a career that solves the ‘what if’s’ in financial services and investment banking.”

Sayles said her Contemporary Macroeconomics Principles and Development of Professional Skills courses that both helped her prepare for her internship in ways of interpreting trends and working in professionals settings. “We really talked about the different factors and analysis of trends in a business and trends,” she said.

She further explained the importance of writing a resume to prepare for professional environments and being career ready. “I already had a resume, but Career Services came into my class and helped us revise our resume, explaining how to write about soft skills versus technical skills.”

Sayles believes there is value in experiential education and planning for a full-time job or graduate school. Her future plans consist of living in Washington, D.C. or Philadelphia, obtaining her MBA, and becoming a financial manager for an ETS.

When asked what advice she would give to an intern on day one of their internship, she said, “You need to have a good mindset, open to everything coming at you and learn to intake information quickly and being open to lifelong learning.”