Meet our Student Spotlight for the month of September: Zach Johnson. Zach comes from the small town of Washington Court House, Ohio. His journey to Ohio State began at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. It was there that the seeds of an interest in a finance career were planted. Zach transferred to Ohio State for the Autumn 2015 semester to join the Buckeye family and to pursue a career in investment banking. He described his decision to transfer as:
“The best decision I’ve ever made”
Zach arrived at Fisher timid about getting involved. At West Point, the focus was on academics. By the start of his sophomore year, Zach began to increase his involvement. That fall semester he joined Buckeye Capital Investors, an investment-focused student organization at Fisher. The following semester Zach joined Scarlet and Gray Financial, a program that provides financial education to college students. Zach was also accepted into the Fisher Futures Investment Banking Program, an investment banking preparatory program run by the Office of Career Management, and he became a member of the Honors Cohort program, a leadership program offering an MBA-like experience to select honors students.
Following his sophomore year, Zach completed a long-awaited investment banking internship with Brown Gibbons and Lang in Cleveland. He followed this with another investment banking internship following his junior year with Lincoln International in Chicago.
Now in his senior year, Zach has accepted a full-time offer to return to Lincoln International as an Investment Banking Analyst. With a job locked down, Zach has turned much of his attention outside the classroom to giving back to the Fisher community. For him, becoming a Peer Advisor has provided the opportunity to help transfer students who are experiencing the same challenges he did when he arrived at Ohio State. He’s been able to share his experiences and relate his own development with these students.
“Getting involved at Fisher has been the most critical piece of my development as a leader. I truly believe there’s something for everyone here.”
If you don’t know what your “something” is, consider sitting down with a Peer Advisor or a Peer Impact Consultant. Students like Zach are here to point you in the right direction.
Meet this month’s Student Spotlight: Maggie Chwalek, a graduating senior studying finance and pursuing a minor in business analytics.
Throughout her time at Fisher, Maggie has been involved in a plethora of programs and organizations. As part of the Alumni Undergraduate Mentorship Program, she developed a lasting relationship that helped her explore the health care industry. She also participated in the Honors Immersion program, where she researched best practices of conjoint analysis, which broadened her view beyond the finance specialization. She recently presented this research at the Denman Undergraduate Research Forum.
Maggie has spent the past year serving as the president of the Undergraduate Business Council. One of her proudest accomplishments is building a cohesive team, despite the organization undergoing an advisor change. In this role, Maggie developed her communication skills by sharing a vision and turning it into a reality. Small steps and setting goals were the key to this journey.
A major takeaway from Maggie’s four years at Fisher is that a business degree allows anyone to do whatever they want. Thanks to the insights of guest speakers and Fisher’s world-class professors, Maggie learned the importance of building connections and networks as a young professional. She credits Fisher for creating a “safe environment” to fail and learn from mistakes.
Maggie’s favorite Ohio State experience was her Buck-I-SERV service trip to Guatemala (pictured), where she worked with her peers to build additions to three houses. Maggie also met one of her best friends on this trip. In her free time, she enjoys working out, going to football games, spending time with friends and being a foodie (@maggieeeats on Instagram).
Upon graduation, Maggie will start her career in corporate finance at Cardinal Health. She will also serve as a member of the Alumni Board for the Honors Immersion program and hopes to, one day, provide projects for students’ hands-on learning.
Jacob is a third-year student majoring in finance with minors in real estate and Spanish.
He is a student in the consulting Industry Immersion Program – a fully immersive experience in which students explore an industry of interest and engage with real companies to work on projects. Jacob enjoys the Immersion program because it is an opportunity to expand his learning outside of his major. As part of the program, he traveled to Chicago to network with alumni, visit companies such as the Accenture Innovation Lab and PwC, which provided project ideas and advice, and explore the city. Jacob will also be traveling to Italy as part of the Industry Immersion Program.
Global experiences and perspective have been critical to Jacob’s education at Fisher. He recently traveled to Japan as a student as part of the Kakehashi Project – a 10-day trip sponsored by the Japanese government in which he spent time with a local host family and took part in a presentation to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Jacob is already planning his trip back.
Jacob has grown and developed as a leader at Fisher and, thanks to opportunities such as Dean’s Leadership Academy and projects with local businesses, he has learned that an effective leader does not need to be in charge, but instead takes action. He has learned how to utilize self-awareness in a group setting – leveraging his strengths, and having others help with his weaknesses in order to maximize the outcome.
In his free time, Jacob enjoys running, playing golf and serving as a basketball scorekeeper for intramural sports. Jacob’s favorite Ohio State memory was rushing the football field in 2016 after a thrilling overtime win over That Team Up North.
Meet Mason Monahan, a third-year student majoring in finance with a minor in Spanish, and a 2018 recipient of a Pace Setters Award – the college’s top honor for undergraduate students. Thanks to lessons of hard work from his parents, Mason was motivated to be successful from an early age. He attributes much of his success to his support system of family and mentors. He encourages students at Fisher to find mentors, surround themselves with positive people and to try and emulate those individuals.
Mason is very active on campus through Alpha Kappa Psi (as professional director), Buckeye Capital Investors (as managing director) and Sigma Phi Epsilon (as sound mind chairman). His involvement centers on a desire to give back to contribute to others’ success. Mason prides himself most on giving back on an individual level — he is always willing to receive emails, texts or phone calls from his peers. He wants to encourage students to diversify their experiences to find what they are passionate about, telling them that now is the time to explore and fail. Likening himself to a shark — “If I stop swimming, I will die,” — Mason maximizes his time every day, following a very rigid schedule, which includes waking up and going to bed at the same time each day.
Mason is focused on continuous learning and developing as a professional and as a leader. He recently discovered that one of the best ways to lead is by delegating tasks to others. He credits Fisher for providing students with these types of leadership opportunities through group projects, case studies and an abundance of student organization offerings.
Mason will be spending this upcoming summer with Brown Gibbons Lang as an investment banking analyst. In his free time, he enjoys attending Buckeye wrestling matches, playing the guitar, working out and reading.
Meet Ray Silvestri and Lizzie Erlanger, two students involved in the Fisher Peer Mentor Program — a program that connects new students with established ones to provide them with a greater understanding of Fisher and its many opportunities for involvement.
The pair began their mentor/mentee relationship in August — Lizzie’s first semester at Ohio State. She joined the Peer Mentor Program because she wanted to make friends, get involved and learn about Fisher from a fellow student. Ray, who went through the program as a mentee, wanted to give back by serving as a mentor during his sophomore year.
During one of their first meetings, Lizzie expressed interest in joining Pi Sigma Epsilon (PSE), a professional business fraternity at Fisher. Coincidentally, Ray served as the vice president of chapter operations for PSE and helped Lizzie prepare for the recruitment process. Today, Lizzie is an active member of the organization and serves in a director’s role for the annual Fisher Sales Competition hosted by PSE.
Ray, who is from Sylvania, Ohio, is majoring in finance with minors in leadership and real estate and urban analysis. Aside from his involvement in the Fisher Peer Mentor Program and Pi Sigma Epsilon, he is a Morrill Scholar, the vice president of outreach for Out in Business, and he also works part-time at the Jesse Owens Recreation Centers.
Lizzie, a native of Tiffin, Ohio, is majoring in marketing with minors in screenwriting and psychology. In addition to her extensive involvement as a mentee, she regularly volunteers with A Moment of Magic, a nonprofit organization in which college-aged students dress as princesses at children’s hospitals and schools. Lizzie is also a writer for The Tab at Ohio State.
For more information about the Fisher Peer Mentor Program, visit: https://fisher.osu.edu/mentor-opportunities