Kate Rooney (’23): What I Wish I Knew as a First-Year Student

Graduating from college is a significant milestone that deserves to be celebrated. However, this event also allows for retrospection on the person you’ve evolved into since you were a first-year and proves that, as scary as going into the corporate world is, things do work out in the end. As we continue with our “What I Wish I Knew as a First-Year Student” series, we couldn’t exclude the graduating class of 2023 to give their insights on their first-year experiences. We sat down with Kate Rooney (23′) to walk down memory lane to look back at her first-year self.

Tell us a little bit about yourself!

KR: “I am a senior Eco-Fi major. After graduation, I am going to be working as an Investments Associate at Columbia Threadneedle Investments, which I’m super excited about. I am really passionate about health and fitness and love watching Boston sports, specifically the Celtics.”

What has your career journey looked like so far?

KR: “Freshman year, I called all the financial planning firms in my town until I got an interview, where I worked at a small advisory doing data entry. Sophomore year, I had a sales internship and absolutely loved the people but realized sales wasn’t for me. Then junior year, I worked as a finance intern for the Boston office of the US Securities and Exchange Commission. I absolutely loved the work there and really enjoyed my experience, but ultimately knew that I wanted a younger and more collaborative culture post graduation. Even though it was challenging and stressful, I decided to go a different path than the SEC for a full time offer.”

What do you remember most about your first-year at Bentley?

KR: “I remember having no idea what I wanted. It felt like finance was such a huge industry, and that there were so many paths and options within finance and I definitely felt overwhelmed.”

Did you take CDI201 and/or CDI301? If so, what did you find the most helpful?

KR: “In CDI 201, taking a deep drive into my strengths and what motivates me and makes me passionate helped me narrow down my path and apply more focus on my career journey.”

Are there any resources you wish you had taken more advantage of as a first-year student?

KR: “I wish I had gone into the career center more to talk to the career colleagues. Freshman year, I didn’t even know this program existed and wish I had utilized this resource more. I think it’s so valuable to learn from your peers who have been in your shoes and have experience that you can learn from.”

What would you tell your first-year self about your career journey?

KR: “I would tell myself to make professional connections with professors, especially in your major. They have a lot of industry experience and are overall great people to hear from , especially if you’re still trying to decide your career path and desires.”

What else would you tell yourself? Anything else you want to add about your experience?

KR: “Don’t stress, Bentley is a great place to develop a career path. Use your resources and take it day by day!”

By Isabella Ampié
Isabella Ampié