Mason student shares her experience as an intern at Goldman Sachs & Co.
BY REEMA ALARAINI, STAFF WRITER
“Everything in life has some risk component. To be well-informed of the consequences of your decisions and being able to anticipate potential problems and solutions to plan effectively goes a long way.”
Senior Sri Medicherla, a Mason student majoring in Finance and minoring in Computational and Data Science, recently completed an internship at Goldman Sachs & Co., an experience she thought was valuable to nurturing her passion for finance.
Medicherla discovered her passion for finance during the pandemic where she took the time to invest and familiarize herself with the financial markets. She opened her first brokerage account and took advantage of different opportunities to buy stocks despite the poor market sentiments.
Medicherla says she enjoys the constant change in the finance field. “The world of business and finance is dynamic and ever-evolving, which I find extremely interesting. Every day is different in the markets and there is something new to be learned,” said Medicherla.
Understanding finance and investing is not an easy thing to learn. But, for Medicherla, she decided to take on that challenge. She taught herself about investing mainly through watching YouTube videos and reading books. Some of the books she recommends for beginners interested in investing include “The Intelligent Investor” by Benjamin Graham and “Little Book of Common Sense Investing” by John C. Bogle.
Her efforts did not stop there as Medicherla started to put the concepts she learned to the test.
“I created a long term portfolio that holds mainly Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), Real-Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), and high dividend paying stocks, where I make sure to reinvest the dividends,” said Medicherla.
Through her self-taught journey, Medicherla also discovered an interest in blockchain technology and cryptocurrency.
“Through transacting and investing in crypto, I learned about network efficiencies/inefficiencies, Web 3.0 technology, Decentralized Finance (DeFi), smart contracts, cross-chain transfers, bridges, etc. I also coded and deployed a token on the Binance blockchain and made the asset tradeable,” said Medicherla.
Medicherla took the chance to incorporate both her passion and knowledge in finance during her recent internship at Goldman Sachs & Co.
“The experience was incredible. I was able to contribute my skill set to a prestigious institution and build upon my knowledge of the business. It was great working on projects with my team and interacting with other interns. Since Goldman is a global company, I was able to make several connections with employees across Asia and Europe. This opportunity is extremely valuable to my career goals as I hope to grow professionally in this industry,” said Medicherla.
Of course, every new opportunity comes with its own set of challenges. “One of the biggest challenges I faced was living in a new city and balancing work with other responsibilities such as housework, cleaning, and cooking,” said Medicherla. “Work-wise, I sought to improve upon my professional communication skills and networking. I had the chance to connect with people from several different departments, so I pushed myself to be more confident and put my best foot forward.”
Medicherla is the current president of the Finance Committee for the Montano Student-Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) at Mason where there are several opportunities for students to participate in events such as “The Alpha Challenge”, and visiting Wall Street to meet with top firms like JPMorgan Chase and Apollo Global Management.
With her extensive experience in finance, Medicherla offers advice for those who want to follow in her footsteps. She encourages students to keep up with finance news and pursue certifications such as Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) in Excel, PowerPoint and take the Securities Industries Essentials (SIE) exam. Students should also enroll into finance courses at Mason, to increase their knowledge.
“With investing, understanding risk-to-reward ratio is really important and I would advise to invest only what you can afford to lose.” Said Medicherla.