June 24, 2009

Researching Companies Internationally for Bloomberg

Undergrad research and Div. I sports prepared me for my work as a credit analyst – by Lindsay Bryant ’07

As a member of Lafayette’s cross country and track & field teams, Lindsay Bryant ’07 was named to the Division I All-Academic Women’s Cross Country list in her senior year and repeatedly earned placement on the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll. She presented her undergraduate research at the annual joint meetings of the American Mathematical Society and Mathematical Association of America in New Orleans.

I graduated in May 2007 with a B.S. degree in mathematics and a minor in economics & business. During my time at Lafayette, I was given numerous opportunities to grow both as a student and as an individual. As an EXCEL Scholar, I conducted research on modeling convertible bonds with Professor Qin Lu. During my senior year, under the guidance of Professors Lu and Michael Kelly, I wrote a joint mathematics and economics & business honors thesis on pricing credit default obligations and created a model in Mathematica. Both of these projects had a direct impact on my career thus far at Bloomberg L.P.

    Now that I am in the “real world,” I have a great appreciation for the countless academic and life lessons I learned as a student-athlete at Lafayette. I began my career at Bloomberg by participating in the Global Data Training Program. This included four weeks of intensive classes, a series of exams, and group presentations on the financial markets with the focus on Bloomberg’s role within the financial world. Although much of what I learned in the training program was new, applying the skills I learned at Lafayette allowed me to thrive and finish in the top of my class. At the culmination of the training program, I was placed in Bloomberg’s fixed-income department.

    As a fixed-income data analyst, I used skills daily that I acquired from both my academic and athletic experiences at Lafayette. Early on, I published a document on our internal news wire about dividend protection for convertible bonds, for which I relied heavily on my EXCEL research experience at Lafayette. In conjunction with my research, I provided training on dividend protection to several teams within Bloomberg. Without a doubt, my experience at Lafayette influenced my ability to present new research and procedures to my colleagues effectively and confidently.

    In December 2007, I moved into a credit analyst role in which I research the corporate and capital structure of companies internationally. This role requires meticulous research and multitasking skills. As a Division I cross-country and track athlete, I developed time management and prioritizing skills at Lafayette. I learned that diligence and hard work are required to be successful. I have applied all of these skills throughout my career at Bloomberg.

    Currently, I am the primary trainer for our capital structure product for both internal and external Bloomberg users. I am responsible for conducting and organizing training sessions for the product, and am the principal contact for our research conducted in Asia. In addition, I have been given the opportunity to manage the interns who work on our capital structure product over the summer months. I serve on our standards committee, which is responsible for any enhancement projects and ensuring that our research is complete and uniform across all regions including Asia Pacific, Europe, and North America.

    As a Rho Gamma (recruitment counselor) and member of Delta Gamma sorority at Lafayette, I helped with recruitment and strengthened my networking skills. These proved invaluable when interacting with colleagues and clients, and provided me an opportunity to work within Bloomberg’s recruitment process. I revisited Lafayette for the career fair in the fall of 2007 and 2008, and for an Investment Club presentation in October 2007. When looking back on the past two years, I realize that my “Lafayette Experience” has truly helped smooth my transition from a student-athlete to an analyst at Bloomberg. I am continuing my education by pursuing my chartered financial analyst (CFA) designation while working at Bloomberg, and am currently a Level 2 CFA candidate. Lafayette has provided me with the confidence and knowledge to tackle any challenges that I may face now and in the future.

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