John O’Gorman is double majoring in Finance and Accounting who will graduate in May 2019. He interned this summer for BlackRock as the Hedge Fund of Funds-Due Diligence Intern in Seattle, Washington.
How did you get this internship? Through professional and personal networking.
What was a typical day like? A typical day consisted of many different tasks. Most of my time was spent on auditing hedge funds, valuing hedge funds, and developing an expense analysis. There were a few main functions that went into the initial audit of each fund. The majority of the time was spent on digging through each of the feeder fund’s 10k and finding material items to prop out. Valuing the fund entailed building a model to compare each position net of the risks associated to develop a broad understanding of the hedge funds performance on a multiple look through basis. I would spend later half of my day creating an efficient expense analysis report. This made sure that the hedge funds were operating in the most efficient way possible.
What was your favorite part of the experience? Working with BlackRock’s Fund of Fund team provided me an opportunity to network with like minded individuals. My favorite part was the responsibility that was given to me and the network that I have built.
If you worked on a big project, please describe it below: I was tasked to initially audit and evaluate over 90 billion dollars of capital. This was also noted in my day to day task.
What did you find most challenging about your internship? The most challenging part was leaving. I built life-long connections and made an impact to the team. I understand it was an internship, but my direct managers made a huge impact on me personally and professionally.
What advice do you have for other students looking for a similar internship? Be a student of finance and network. Just because you are a finance major doesn’t mean that’s the end of learning. I spent my last couple years networking, not to get a job but to understand finance more in depth. My obsession with finance paid off in the beginning by understanding simple terms and the “why” behind most trades. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions.
How did Eller prepare you for your internship? Eller gives all students equal opportunities to succeed. The two major things Eller has provided is the access to information whether that be a discounted WSJ subscription or access to the Bloomberg terminal. Second is the culture Eller has built. Plain in simple, Jeff Welters has help me tremendously since transferring to the University of Arizona and I encourage all individuals looking for a similar internship to meet with him. He has been and continues to be a fantastic mentor to myself.
Did your internship employer provide housing or transportation assistance? No, my employer did not provide any housing or transportation assistance.