Internship Spotlight – Claire O’Connor, Voya Investment Management

Eller PDC Coordinator Student Stories

Claire is a Finance major graduating in the Spring of 2019. This summer, she interned for Voya Investment Management as a Credit Research Analyst for the Senior Loan Group in Scottsdale, Arizona.

How did you land this internship?

Jeff Welter, my Career Coach, told me a U of A Alumni was looking for a summer intern. I emailed her asking for more details, and then applied online. There was a first round phone interview, and then a three hour in person interview where I met eight different people.

Did you work on any big projects this summer?

Toward the end of my internship, I led the underwriting process on a $535mm syndicated loan, and pitched it to our Investment Committee. I made DCF, value to loan, and downside models in Excel so I could evaluate the creditworthiness of the borrower. I also analyzed how the company made money, and what I thought the business would do in the future. The presentation was a 10 page packet that I presented to six portfolio managers, our Chief Credit Officer, and our Group Head. After an hour of presenting and answering their questions, our group committed $30mm to fund part of the company’s loan. I saw the company on a billboard driving down the freeway the other day!

What advice do you have for other students seeking a similar internship?

I would advise students to network as much as possible. The popular internships have hundreds or thousands of applicants each year, and you need someone at the firm to pull your application out of the stack and suggest you to HR. Employers love to see students taking the initiative and seeking out people at the firm, it really sets you apart.

How did Eller prepare you for your internship?

The internship was after my sophomore year, so I hadn’t taken any Eller classes yet. Even though I wasn’t in Eller, my Career Coach and Eller Adviser worked with me to mock interview, and taught me how to find people on LinkedIn to network with. Aside from networking and interviewing, my freshman and sophomore year classes taught me to take initiative when it comes to learning. When I didn’t understand BNAD 277, I ordered extra books, and watched tutorials online. Same goes for the internship, when I didn’t understand how a syndicated loan worked, I ordered books to teach myself so I could be a better asset to the firm.