Continuing with the campus highlight series, the Bentley Investment Group, or BIG, is a campus organization that most students have heard of, due to its impressive size (200+ members!) and impressive reputation.
Why should you consider joining BIG?
Well, students are able to gain first-hand experience running an equity fund, which is an experience that most college students can only expect to get out of their future jobs. Doing it during undergrad will prove to be a huge advantage in interviews and beyond. BIG is able to invest and control a small portion of the Bentley Endowment and students are able to learn more about asset management while showing off their interest in the stock market.
Seems serious. I’m probably too busy for BIG, with my classes and everything else. Right?
Wrong. Students attend a sector meeting to learn more about topics that interest them. The sectors BIG students can currently join are:
- Materials and Industrials
- and Technology
Each sector meets once a week, so students are able to get to know each other and build their networks while also learning more about specific industries, general investment knowledge, and gaining skills that will greatly benefit them during their careers. For example, a BIG part of BIG is chiming in with a great investment opportunity idea or volunteering to step up and represent your sector in a stock pitch. The great part about BIG is that it’s what you make of it, and students are encouraged to attend several sector meetings to get a feel for where they want to make the biggest impact in the organization.
Can you explain BIG stock pitches?
Sure can! Each sector has one or several opportunities to pitch a stock to be added into BIG’s portfolio throughout the semester. Pitches happen weekly during a general body meeting and attending members vote on whether the equities that are presented get into the portfolio or not.
Will it be good for my career? 100%.
Miles Shaheen, a current Junior and an analyst within Financials, says that he has gained many relevant skills from actively participating in BIG, such as financial modeling practice, presentation skills, networking skills, research skills, and even became more apt with technology through using Bloomberg and FactSet.
Miles says that “in every single interview I’ve had to talk about BIG and being an analyst. Interviewers are typically interested to hear more about some of the stocks that I’ve pitched and the thinking behind them.”
He urges students to get involved by asking questions, helping out with pitches, and spending time learning about topics that you find interesting.
Final thoughts on BIG for YOUR career?
Bentley Investment Group has a wide range of opportunities for any investment interest that you may have. Additionally, there are many tiers of involvement, from being a general member, to becoming an analyst, to leading a sector, or even going for an E-Board position.
With any organization as large as this one, and especially one that is so focused on students’ futures, the alumni network is incredible. Miles mentions that a lot of the alumni he has personally networked with has had experience with, or is familiar with, BIG. This creates and instant connection and leads way to an impressive conversation on what he has done for the org.
This networking benefit alone is worth joining BIG for, but if you’re an aspiring financial analyst, investment banker, or just someone who is planning on trading on your own, BIG should be #1 on your list.