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UCIMCO Vanguard Field Trip

UCIMCO visits Vanguard to gain more insight on investing techniques and more.

On a sunny Tuesday morning, members of the Ursinus College Investment Management Company took a trip to Vanguard’s Malvern campus to gain a greater understanding of the investing world, and ultimately how to possibly manage $5 trillion.

We split up into mini-vans early in the morning and made the short drive to the Malvern campus where we were provided with security badges and shown into a swanky presentation room fitted with multiple projector screens and comfortable seating for the group. We were greeted by Ursinus alums Erich Pingel, Lauren Stipa and Jennifer Dunn who work as the Investment Analyst, Emerging Leader Development Program Manager and Human Resources Recruiter respectively. 

Our first presentation of the day saw Ursinus Alums Erich Pingel, Lauren Stipa and Jennifer Dunn provide us with an insight into careers at Vanguard, and how the recruitment process works for various area of the global investing firm. The pair explained how the various leadership programs function, explaining how the firm cultivates top talent to flourish throughout the company in their respective roles. The UCIMCO group was shown a beautiful video about the inclusivity of Vanguard employment, and how the company prioritizes the advancement and networking of marginalized populations, offering numerous chances to network within the firm. After the presentation the pair took question on how to best engage in Vanguards recruitment process, and the particular opportunities which would be available to new college graduates.

The second presentation of the day was given by Ursinus Alums Peter Kokulous, Michael Gozdowski and Erich Pingel. The question motivating the presentation was “How do you manage $5 trillion? The presenters explained how the firm divides up their assets between various fund managers and ETF’s, explaining their philosophy of passive management through long-term investing. We were also educated on how analysts at the firm utilize forecasting to project economic risk for various regions across the globe, and the factors which they prioritize when attempting to predict the economic outlook for any given region. 

After being provided with a catered lunch we were finally offered the opportunity to talk with a panel of alumni, who answered questions about how life at Ursinus prepared them for the professional world. Kristen Mandi, Jaime Bocanementh and Brendan Gifford all explained their transition into the professional world, as well as explaining the educational opportunities Vanguard had offered them, either through sponsorship of their master or additional certifications such as the CFA.

Ultimately the trip to Vanguard offered students involved in UCIMCO the chance to gain a greater understanding of life at one of the world’s biggest investment firms. Through conversations with Ursinus alumni we were able to understand the applications of our education, and how best to leverage those skills to gain employment upon graduation. 


?By Paul Cottam, UCIMCO Analyst

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