Lerner Graduate Student Stories: Bridget Joyce

Bridget Joyce, a native of Horsham, Pa., is pursuing her master’s degree in finance (4+1 program) and is expected to graduate in 2024. Bridget shared why she chose to continue her grad studies at Lerner and the most impactful project in which she’s participated.

Lerner: Why did you go back to pursue your graduate degree? Why did you choose the Lerner College for your studies?

Joyce: I chose to continue my education after completing my undergraduate education at Lerner College. I knew that earning a master’s degree would open up much more opportunities in my career, and was eager to deepen my knowledge in finance. After being in Lerner College for four years, I knew that it was the right place for me to pursue a Master’s degree, and being able to earn one in just a year was a game changer.

Lerner: What did you learn through this opportunity that you wouldn’t have learned anywhere else?

Joyce: I learned how to articulate my thoughts when doing a financial analysis. Doing a financial analysis is one step; however, being able to articulate it, especially when speaking to professionals without a background in finance, can be challenging. Through my classes in Lerner, I feel confident in my ability to communicate any financial analysis I do, which will be helpful in my career.

Lerner: Please share an example of a course or concept that you were able to apply directly to your life and/or career.

Joyce: In Fall 2022, in my Advanced Corporate Finance class, I completed a financial analysis of Bed Bath and Beyond. In the project, I looked at its current financial standing, and completed pro-forma to discover what measures would need to be taken in order for the company to return to good financial standing. It was an interesting project to complete since it was happening in real time and the company filed for bankruptcy the following April.

Lerner: Describe an important connection you have made through your graduate program (personal, professional, peers, mentors, professors, etc.)

Joyce: I made an important connection during my Advanced Corporate Finance class last fall. I was lucky to be paired with two of my now friends, Sam and Chloe, for group projects. We spent a lot of time working together. We each brought an intense work ethic as well as different strengths that helped us collaborate and learn from each other. I still keep in touch with Sam and Chloe today.

Lerner: If you were to describe your classmates in one word, what would that be and why?

Joyce: Motivated. My classmates are highly motivated and driven, eager to learn and ask questions to deepen their knowledge in the field of finance.

Lerner: How do you balance your career with your studies?

Joyce: In addition to being a full-time student, I am also on the women’s varsity track and field team, a member of Delta Sigma Pi Professional Business Fraternity, and Chair of the NIL Committee within Athletics and Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Balancing school, my extracurriculars, and the job application process can be tricky at times, but I’ve learned that planning ahead is key. I plan out each day to ensure that I am completing my assignments on time for school and my extracurriculars, while also taking care of myself.

Lerner: Fill in this sentence: “My graduate program helped me become…”

Joyce: Well-rounded. There is a lot that you can do with a finance degree, and getting a master’s degree gives me a background in multiple areas, while also helping me pinpoint which area I would like to start my career in.

Lerner: What was the most impactful hands-on project or case competition that you were able to participate in?

Joyce: In the fall, I completed a currency exposure project. My group was tasked with finding the optimal hedging strategy with the lowest cost. Through this project, I was able to learn the importance of hedging and the ability to explain our choice as if we were talking with clients.

Lerner: What are your plans or next steps for the future?

Joyce: I would like to work in asset management. Through my classes, I have found an interest in consulting. I would love to be able to combine my two passions – working with numbers and helping others – to be able to make a difference in other companies/institutions. At some point in my career, I would also like to educate college athletes on financial literacy.

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