Networking through Coffee Chats

Name: Naina Mishra

Year: Sophomore

Major(s): Economics

Minor(s): Entrepreneurship, Business Institutions Program

CFS Class: Business Field Studies

Employer: Goldman Sachs

My name is Naina Mishra, and I’m a sophomore studying Economics, Entrepreneurship, and Business Institutions. I was born in Mumbai, and then I lived in Singapore and then Hong Kong before moving to the US for college. I interned in Goldman Sachs’ Private Wealth Management division, which provides investment services to high net worth individuals and organizations. Going into the internship, I had no prior experience in finance. While I read the news daily, most of the terms in the “Markets” section confused me. On campus, I was more involved in entrepreneurship and business consulting than finance. However, I was excited to try something new and experience the finance industry. It turned out that Goldman Sachs was the best place for me to learn. Every week, I listened to firm-wide investment calls and read the firm’s internal research on stocks. My coworkers loved discussing the markets and they were more than willing to answer any questions I had. Additionally, I was given the opportunity to generate portfolio reviews, which summarizes a portfolio’s return at the end of the year. Through my projects and reflections in class, I learned a lot about the wealth management industry.

My favorite thing about the internship was the emphasis that Goldman Sachs placed on “coffee chats.” The company encourages us to get to know our coworkers over coffee. I was able to get coffee with around 15 people. I learned about their career paths, job responsibilities, and hopes for the future. My most interesting conversations were with an army veteran and someone who used to work in the nonprofit sector before transitioning into finance. These conversations taught me that there is no single “normal” career path and that I should feel free to pursue a non-traditional job. I’m grateful for the opportunity to develop meaningful connections in such a short amount of time.