1/1/18

Hello my fellow Monkeys,

Although I've been stalking this forum for a year and a half, I didn't have the courage to officially join until recently. I'm currently in my second internship with JPM and have some down time after working on a lengthy project. I thought that I would share my story with some of you to provide a different perspective from what we usually see on here. Anyways, here goes:

Growing up in the Caribbean:

I was born in the Caribbean to a working class family that often struggled to support itself. My father and mother have always had a strong relationship with me and my siblings. When I was 5 my father had to leave our country in search of employment, leaving us behind. He didn't go too far and was able to consistently send money back home. Despite this extra source of income, things weren't easy for us. My parents both lack a proper education and often turned to the massive factories nearby for employment. From a young age I recognized that struggle and told myself that I wanted my life to be different.

At the time my government did not have a structured public school system. I was home-schooled early on and was later enrolled in a schoolhouse nearby. They taught us how to read and write, as well as basic arithmetic. We were taught by women who barely had more education than we did. I look back at this fondly as it undoubtedly shaped my appreciation for education. I developed a sharp focus and was instilled a hardy work ethic by my parents.

Visa Sponsorship / Move to south Bronx NYC:

My grandmother on my mother's side became a US citizen before after I was born. She sponsored us for visas, a process that would take over 11 years. Shortly after I turned 8 we received news that we were approved. I would soon be leaving for NYC in search of a better life. We were shocked but clearly very happy to have the opportunity to seek a proper education and improve our circumstances. My older brother and sister would finally be able to attend high school and possibly higher education. We packed up all our belongings, sold our small house and took off.

Life in New York was not what I expected. The tourist infested areas were clearly very clean and well kept. I moved into the South Bronx, where I continue to live to this day. Needless to say, my first few years here were really rough. I was faced with growing up in a tough neighborhood and learning a new language. I forced myself to read constantly and watch TV shows in English to pick up the language. School was obviously a big help, but I'm sure I don't need to mention the struggles and shortcomings of inner city schools.

My English improved and I progressed through elementary school, middle school and high school. My high school experience was the worst by far. We had virtually zero guidance when it came to applying to college. My saving grace was my English teacher who helped me apply to schools and multiple scholarships. I was accepted to many private schools that offered very little financial aid. My scholarships didn't stretch too far, so I had to come up with a different solution. I turned to local schools and decided to attend a CUNY. This guaranteed that I would be fully covered.

Internship with JPM FLDP

I currently attend a liberal arts college without a proper business school. My affiliation with national business organizations and extra curricular activities set me apart. My sophomore year I attended an annual convention which hosted a career fair. I was able to network effectively and secured an internship with JPM's FLDP. This brings me to today. I'm coming in on the last few weeks and it feels unbelievable. With the help of WSO's FDP guide, I feel like I've had a successful internship and I'm ready for more.

I'm not an IB intern or a student from a prestigious university. I'm not in a FO role but I can proudly say that I have accomplished everything I set out to do so far. Working in Midtown feels unreal as I remember nights when I went to bed hungry. Perspective is everything, I view my current internship and potential full time as a milestone. I still have aspirations to break into high level finance and I will not give up until I do. The turning point was seeing my mother cry because she couldn't afford to feed us. This will forever push me to do better, to break this vicious cycle I was born into. Sorry for the long read guys, but it feels good to get this off my chest.

Thanks for reading,

Slim

Mod Note (Andy): top 50 posts of 2017, this one ranks #5 (based on # of silver bananas)

Comments (55)

7/26/17

Congrats! Thanks for sharing.

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7/26/17

Great story man, congrats to you

7/26/17

A real non-target success story.

Good job buddy, keep grinding!

Best Response
7/26/17

The American Dream, congrats!

26 Broadway
where's your sense of humor?

8/3/17

Thank you for the comment! Just like you, I have my sights on the TippyTop! :)

7/27/17

Motivating stuff! Good luck to you moving forward.

7/31/17

Never gets old to hear underdog stories

8/3/17

Indeed.

, that's why they win.

7/31/17

Congrats to you, bud. I grew up in the South Bronx as well, always good to see people go on and do good things (although it's rare). Keep working, set more goals and work harder to reach those.

8/1/17

Hey Conyak,

Thank you very much! The Boogy Down is a tough place for sure, but we have many talented people looking for their shot. I'll continue to pay it forward and help those around me.

7/31/17

As a fellow product of NYC public schools, I want to congratulate you for persevering through all the adversity that growing up in this city entails. I know it's one of the hardest places in this country to compete and thrive in as a kid - all the more so without formal guidance and mentorship along the way.

I am proud to see another kid from the streets rise to the skyscrapers, and I wish you luck in all that you do.

8/1/17

Hey Fugue,

Thank you for your pride and kind wishes. It's certainly a hard place when all the guidance you have are books and television. Under-funded NYC public schools (Most of them) simply don't provide their students with the resources they need to thrive. I have found many mentors now but the road here was a hard one.

7/31/17

Incredible story. Keep working hard and pushing yourself to the next level.

7/31/17

Terrific. Keep up the good work.

8/1/17

Your story is more impressive than most people who even get that FO role including those coming from non-targets. Make sure to reward yourself for your success here and there.

8/1/17

Hey fromtheshadows,

Thanks for your advice. I'll be sure to enjoy myself once the summer gig is over. I'm not so sure if it's more impressive but I'll keep pushing for that FO role nonethless.

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8/1/17

Cool story what was your native language, French?

8/1/17

Hey Bate,

My native language is Spanish, but I also speak a bit of Italian.

8/1/17

Congrats. I am very happy for your success. However, it is important to keep things in perspectives and always be hungry for success. Fortune is a cruel mistress and she will test you time and time again. First thing I would do when you get your big bonus will be to lock it up in a secret account for the rainy days. Don't let the money change the person who get you there in the first place.

8/1/17

Hey Naoki,

Thank you for the kinds words. I'll be sure to keep that perspective in mind. I remain humble by remembering what I went through.

8/1/17

Enjoy your money, don't listen to these 401kers who tell you to live like a bum until you're 60 years old. You owe it to yourself

8/1/17

Very inspirational. You played well with the cards you were dealt.

8/1/17

Feels good to read a story like this after 18 consecutive posts of "is it okay to wear a rolex as a summer analyst even if it was a graduation gift from my grandfather??"

8/11/17

Fucking this^.

'I'm jacked... JACKED TO THE TITS!!'

8/1/17

Thanks for the warm response, guys. I was very nervous to share this story but I wanted to let students in my position know that they have a chance. It's good to see that there are good people on here. I appreciate the love!

8/1/17

Cheers man, appreciate the honesty and frankness of it all. Humble beginnings, never forget them. Keep making music that's fire, spitting your soul through the wire. Congratulations for making it this far, and keep going - best of luck to you, from one hip hop head to another. Thanks for sharing. Perspective is everything.

8/1/17

Hey bankerboy252,

Thank you for the support. I think that perspective of one's life and situation can determine the difference between success and failure. Hip hop music has been a outlet for my stress and motivation for my relentless efforts. Big up!

8/3/17

Great story; it's pretty much identical to mine (caribbean origin, not-so-safe city, first gen American, public schools, first gen college grad).

The most important thing to remember is to keep working like you're still hungry. I never forget those nights, ever. Don't ever get complacent, never settle or think that you're in a "good spot", and always be appreciative of the opportunity you're given. It's okay to have a bit of a chip on your shoulder, but don't let it mask your thinking (always be humble, but confident).

You're not allowed to stop until you can write your mom and dad a check for seven figures and tell them that they never have to worry about anything else for the rest of their lives.

Lastly, I can't emphasize this enough, but always work like there are 1,000 people trying to take your job. Be thankful for all of your tough times, because fire forges iron. I have no doubt you'll become successful- just keep pushing, and always strive to become a better person with each passing day.

-Anon

8/3/17

Anon,

Thank you for that inspiring comment. I share the same view, I will not stop until my parents are taken care off. Fire does indeed forge iron. However, my mother has instilled within me a deep appreciation for all. My circumstances will not define me, I will continue to push forward.

8/3/17

I am in a similar situation but in an eastern european country. What i would like to add is that my drive is not breaking the cycle . I, and probably you, already broke the circle. You have food, you are not going to sleep with the fear of tomorrow. My drive is to help those people who would be in the same situation as i was. Im always hungry as long as i know that someone from my hometown wouldn't be able to get the same chances as i did and fight for food his whole life.
You broke he cycle, dont chase the money. You know how life is down there, people in high-finance will never understand it. If people like you don't care, nobody will.

8/4/17

Hey Vadok,

My friends form Eastern Europe tell me the same. I admire your drive to help those around as I try my best to pay it forward. You make a very valid point, I am one of the lucky ones in the sense where I got the opportunity to escape. I escaped poverty but there are many kids back in my hometown who wish they could do the same. I'll keep your words in mind as they resonated with me deeply. Money is not my motivation, I simply seek a better life.

8/3/17

Awesome stuff! Keep preparing and you'll be in a FO job in no time. Guys like you will succeed.

8/3/17

very inspirational - and I think it's great for all of this hear stories like yours to realize how lucky most of us truly are.

Thank you for sharing!
Patrick

8/4/17

Hey Patrick,

Thank you! It's a pleasure to see that my story has reached you. I want to personally thank you for the site as it gave me the resources to be successful. This is a great community with even greater people.

8/3/17

Awesome story. Never stop the grind. Never stop the hustle. Your hunger will be your success.

8/4/17

You sound like a guy I would love to have a beer with. Cheers!

8/4/17

Awesome story! Love to see you never gave up. Hard work and aspiration truly pays off. Congrats!

8/4/17

Awesome story. Your English is very good. When you were going through learning English, did you ever listen to rap? I ask because of your username, but also because I have found that listening to rap forces one to learn idioms that one would otherwise miss by just reading books or learning a language's grammar.

8/4/17

Hey Sil,

Thanks for reading, I really appreciate your support. I used Hip Hop and television to learn English. As you can see by my profile, I'm a huge Eminem fan. When I first arrived in this country, he was still in the "Slim Shady" era. His twisted rhymes and humor really helped me develop my grammar. I was able to understand idioms and metaphors easily.

8/4/17

I just have to log on and reply. Awesome story!

8/4/17

Congrats. Never let anyone tell you that you cannot achieve something.

8/4/17

Wow Congrats! I can relate as my parents are from the Caribbean as well (Guyana) and we have a similar story. I was able to land an Intern position with BAML jr year of college and now I am in my 2nd year full time.

8/9/17

Hey jaysingh1993,

Thank you! It's good to see another kid for the Caribbean doing well. Congrats! I hope to be in a similar position soon enough.

8/4/17

Thanks for sharing! A great story, and I'm sure those struggling will find motivational and helpful.

Catanha

8/5/17

GOOD JOB!!!

ALL THE VERY BEST TO YOU AND YOUR FAMILY!!!

8/7/17

Amazing stuff Shady. Thank you for sharing.

8/11/17

Congratulations, bro! Luckily you got papers, so when you DO break in, you won't need sponsorship - a huge plus. Cheers!

8/11/17

Hey yessir1,

Thanks a lot, man. I'm a citizen now so sponsorship is not a problem. Thanks for your kind words!

8/11/17

Great story, OP! Thanks for the read.

'I'm jacked... JACKED TO THE TITS!!'

8/11/17

Hey Chuck,

Thanks for the message, man. I appreciate it!

9/22/17

CONGRATULATIONS!!!

12/30/17

You'r not the real Slim Shady then, huh?
Anyway, Congrats bro! GG WP!

1/2/18

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1/10/18

English man in WSO, fresh off the boat.

1/10/18

Stephen T
Finance Major
Bentley University
Boston, MA