Early Investment in His Finance Career Pays Off for Alum
In spring 2015, Aaron Markowitz walked across the graduation stage with his diploma from the University of Pittsburgh’s College of Business Administration in one hand and a job offer from PNC Capital Markets LLC in the other.
To achieve his finance career goals, Markowitz enhanced his studies by gaining industry experience through internships with HRG Group in New York City in summer 2014 and with the New York Yankees in the summer of 2013. While one internship was in finance and the other internship was in sports, both were focused on the bottom line.
Markowitz says the diverse set of course requirements in the Pitt Business program gave him the foundation for a successful career.
“In some finance classes, I was encouraged to learn on my own, which is an important skill for this type of work. The Practicum in Portfolio Management and Security Analysis gave me experience in managing a real stock portfolio, and in combination with my other courses, I gained a deep understanding of corporate finance, stock pitches, and equity valuations,” he said.
In his role as a fixed income analyst for PNC Capital Markets LLC, Markowitz’s typical day includes preparing profit and loss statements, risk sheets, and by helping to bring municipal bonds to market. Additionally, he assembles pitchbooks for the traders to use on pitches and runs analytics for the company’s traders or public finance bankers.
“I really enjoy finance because it applies to any business. It doesn’t matter if it’s PNC or Razzy Fresh, companies will still need to look at capital allocation and what makes the most sense for the business,” Markowitz said.
Even so, a successful career in finance isn’t built on strong qualitative abilities alone, according to Markowitz.
“The main soft skill needed for finance is communication. From standing out in a job interview to working to solve a problem with coworkers, communication is key,” Markowitz said.
For Pitt Business students who will soon embark on a career in finance, Markowitz’s advice is to have the tenacity to get your foot in the door.
“Finance isn’t easy. Adjusting to a new career is a reflection of what you put in. If you really commit yourself and focus on succeeding, you’ll go far,” he said.
For more information on the requirements and curriculum of the Finance Major at Pitt Business, visit cba.pitt.edu/academics/majors/finance.