The following was written by UGA Men’s Swimming & Diving student-athlete, Blake Atmore. Blake is currently pursuing a degree in Finance from the Terry College of Business.
As a student-athlete at the University of Georgia, I believe there are numerous traits that are manifested and developed due to the strenuous day to day activities as a college athlete. Countless others and I have learned how to manage time efficiently, culminate a dedicated work ethic, and compete outside of our respective comfort zones. However, one immense disadvantage student-athletes have compared to other college students is the inability to intern during the college years. Whether it’s because of commitment to training, traveling for athletics, or countless other reasons, I often observe that although student-athletes have the characteristics to succeed in life after athletics; they have not been given the same opportunities to acquire experience to allow the respective student-athlete to obtain the career of their choice. However in part to The Georgia Way, I was assisted in being able to intern as a Sales & Trading Analyst at Barclays Capital in New York City upon completion of my senior year of college athletics and it was one of the greatest experiences I have had in my life.
My Sales & Trading internship consisted of a 10-week rotational program. The first week consisted of basic market overview and training, which repeated concepts I had learned at UGA and taught me new concepts I had not been exposed to beforehand. Once I finished training, my three week rotational program began. My first rotation was on the Institutional Equity Sales desk. It consists of general equity sales persons that work with institutional sized clients (e.g. hedge funds). It was a great starting point because I assumed a generalist role and was able to gain exposure to all market sectors such as industrials, telecom, consumer staples, and more.
For my second rotation, I worked on the Cross-Asset Sales desk. It consisted of me learning how Barclays structures customized notes and works with Broker-Dealers, private banks, and more. It was a great desk to rotate to second because in comparison to Institutional Equity Sales, this desk was more quantitative in nature.
Ultimately, for my last rotation, I rotated on the Credit Sales desk. The credit sales desk is a rotation within itself; I shadowed the Investment Grade, High Yield, Distressed, Emerging Markets, and Loans credit teams. It was extremely beneficial to observe the pace of the credit floor and learn more about the depth and breadth of the credit world.
Overall, it was a great summer as it forced me to step outside my comfort zone and learn to shadow and network with junior and senior bankers. At the same times, this internship taught me an immense amount of knowledge relating to the finance world that is only taught with hands on experience. It was an incredible summer that will serve me in my future career. Go Dawgs.