Bridging the gender gap in finance
Investment firms want people like Breanne Greene. But, according to Girls Who Invest, top funds say they don’t see enough résumés from women.
Greene, a junior studying finance, is charting a new path for more University of Dayton women to enter finance — as the first UD student to complete the Girls Who Invest online intensive program, an opportunity to explore a career in finance and investment with support from industry experts.
“The investment management industry, and finance at large, can have a reputation for being inaccessible, and trails other industries in terms of diversity,” said Jim Caldarise, director of recruiting and admissions for Girls Who Invest. “However, studies have supported that diverse teams improve financial performance.”
Girls Who Invest builds a pipeline of talented women and hopes to have 30% of the world’s invested capital managed by women by 2030.
“It was a great opportunity for me to build my network with people at top firms,” Greene said of the experience.
“It was a great opportunity for me to build my network with people at top firms.”
Greene said she received a solid foundation in core finance and investment concepts with educators and content from leading finance education institutions such as CFA Institute, Wall Street Prep and Wharton Online.
“I gained practical skills like working more efficiently in Excel with hotkeys in the Wall Street Prep module, but I also gained philosophical insight into investing through the Wharton module, which was a highlight for me,” Greene said. She completed the program while interning in the Fidelity Investments Diverse Investor Student Experience program.
Bridget Momper, a senior studying finance and Davis Center senior manager, connected with Girls Who Invest to bring the program to UD.
“They have relationships with the biggest names, like Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley,” Momper said. “So I found contact information and worked persistently at the relationship. When I had the opportunity, I pitched the Davis Center to them, and they asked to start a relationship and pipeline with us.”
Momper and Greene are analysts in the University’s Davis Center, which is the largest student-run investment fund in the nation managing $64.6 million in assets as of Dec. 31. Students working in the center learn skills needed in the industry such as how to be resourceful, driven and build effective relationships.
With Greene paving the way, four more UD students are participating in the Girls Who Invest online intensive program this semester and during the summer.
“At Girls Who Invest, we are looking for engaged students who are eager to learn within a community of like-minded peers interested in advancing gender diversity within investment management,” Caldarise said. “We believe in the power of community to make change, and we have certainly seen that from our University of Dayton scholars as they continue to remain active community members in our program and on campus.”