Katie Fowlkes, a senior finance major, works in the Masters Investment Learning Center at the Haslam College of Business. She attributes her confidence in the knowledge of financial markets to this experience and says it has helped her determine a career track.
“Laura Cole, the center director, has been a personal mentor since I began working there three years ago,” says Fowlkes. “She provided me with career guidance, connected me with older students who had taken the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exams, and has been a wonderful influence on my collegiate experience.”
The confidence that Fowlkes gleaned from her experiences in the Haslam College of Business was not always first-nature.
“I love the volunteer spirit we have on this campus and think it’s really unique,” says Fowlkes. “I remember as a freshman I was terrified about the first day of classes, and didn’t know where anything on campus was. My orientation leader noticed my panic and offered to walk me to all of my classes the day before so that I would feel confident and prepared on the first day. This is a perfect reflection of how special our culture is on this campus and in our college.”
Fowlkes interned at both Edward Jones in St. Louis, Missouri, and for a member of the British Parliament in London, England.
“Both of these experiences were incredible and helped me further my grasp of what I wanted to do for my career. My time with Edward Jones allowed me to communicate with a lot of different finance professionals—both the advisors out in the field and the portfolio managers that create the investments that Edward Jones sells,” says Fowlkes. “My experience in London was eye-opening, especially because it was such a tumultuous time in British politics. I saw the intricacies of the political system and how global events affect the financial markets. London broadened my views of the world and it was an absolutely unforgettable experience that would not have been possible without the support of our donors and faculty members.”
Fowlkes has accepted a position as a financial analyst at Kroger corporate in Cincinnati, Ohio, and will start there upon graduating in May. She is also studying for the Level I of the CFA.
“I am sure that with the lessons I have learned from our faculty and the confidence they have in all of us, paired with the depth of knowledge I will glean from the CFA, this will aid me in my future career and make me a better analyst,” Fowlkes says.