August 15, 2007

Qiong Wu ’09 Learns Teamwork at Merrill Lynch

He served a summer internship with Jonathan Ellis ’98

Working as a member of a team is an integral part of many post-collegiate endeavors. As an intern for Merrill Lynch this summer, Qiong Wu ’09 (Shanghai, China), is learning first-hand what it means to be a good team leader.

Wu, under the direction of Jonathan Ellis ’98, is interning in the Equity Research division of Merrill Lynch in New York City.

“It is a ten-week-long program and we are placed in a team that covers a certain amount of public companies,” explains Wu, who is pursuing a B.S. mathematics and A.B. with a major in economics and business. “In our teams, we provide insight, knowledge and evaluation of the companies in order to identify attractive investment opportunities within a particular industry to internal and external clients.”

“The goal of the project is to develop models and collect information that is used as part of the research process to identify the best companies for investment in a particular industry,” says Ellis. “The value that research analysts provide is largely a function of their deep knowledge of a particular industry and Qiong has the opportunity this summer to do all of the work that an entry level analyst would be required to do in order to gain a comprehensive knowledge of an industry.”

Besides his internship, Wu is also able to spend time with many members of the company outside of regular work hours.

“There are many activities planned for us. The management team gives us presentations and some of them sit down and have breakfast with us,” he says. “We have networking events and dinners for the beginning and end of the program. We also have three evaluations along with access to a designated mentor within the program to help us evaluate our strengths and weaknesses and how we can improve.”

Wu says the exposure he has received while at Merrill Lynch has given him a clearer vision for his future, which may involve returning to the company as a full-time employee.

“You get the exposure to different parts of the business world,” he says. “We work in a big financial institution, and we build strong relationships with the companies we cover, which range anywhere from Apple, Google, or the local hospital if part of a company is publicly traded.”

Ellis hopes that he has helped Qiong focus on his goals after college.

“Through this internship experience, Qiong will hopefully gain a clear sense as to whether equity research is a field that interests him as a potential career,” says Ellis.

Wu says that the teamwork ethics he has learned while at Merrill Lynch have been satisfying.

“I do anything I can to help my team, including writing up the reports, building models and charts, preparing presentations to the investors, and attending conference calls and web casts,” he says. “One thing that I really appreciated is that my team really trusts me to hand-off a lot of work, which really helps me to learn the business.”

Wu is a resident advisor, a manager at Gilbert’s Cafe, and a supervisor at Kirby Sports Center.

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