Mr. and Mrs. Ghobriel knew their son would make a great doctor or lawyer. George Ghobriel '21 disappointed them when he passed on both professions. Instead, his parents had unwittingly inspired a completely different career path...
Ghobriel's parents immigrated to the United States from Egypt. They worked hard to provide a good life for their family, but they weren't well versed in their finances. Ghobriel studied business and found his way to finance. He was able to work with his family to make more informed decisions. He realized you don't have to be a doctor to help people. HIs parents realize that too. They're proud of the work their son will do, assisting people through important financial decisions, as a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs Ayco Personal Financial Management.
In 2020, Ghobriel scored a prestigious internship and then took off for London for the spring semester. When the pandemic hit, his study abroad experience was cut short, and the employer rescinded the internship. Ghobriel's future, all of a sudden, seemed murky. Using his Siena network, Ghobriel passed his resume on to an alumnus who formerly worked with Ayco. A few weeks later, Ghobriel got a call about an interview.
Last July, Ghobriel started his tenure at Ayco as a financial wellness intern. Students who score internships know the conversion rate to a full-time position, assuming high marks during the internship, is incredibly high. Ghobriel started his full-time position this month. Once he passes a series of exams (the next four months will be devoted to studying), he'll work with clients on their retirement planning, asset allocation, income taxes, college planning, and more. He won't be cold-calling or trying to sell services or superfluous plans. He doesn't work on commission. He's simply helping people navigate their finances - the work he found so rewarding with his parents. There's a Franciscan component to that kind of work; perhaps that's why the CEO so frequently recruits from Siena. In fact, the intern who took Ghobriel's spot? See below.
“Without the people I met and the education I was blessed with at Siena, I can’t imagine having such a fulfilling four years of my life and a promising career ahead of me. For that, I thank my Siena family… today and every day.”
George Ghobriel '21
Anthony Barbera '22, G '23 couldn't ask for a better mentor at his Ayco internship. His supervisor was recently an intern himself with the same responsibilities. In fact, his supervisor created Word documents - cheat sheets, effectively - with helpful tips in case Barbera needs to go back reference something he learned during orientation. It was a time consuming, extremely generous gesture. And exactly what you'd expect from Ghobriel.
Like Ghobriel, Barbera wants to use his talents to help others. Friends have told him about their experiences as interns at other wealth management firms where the analysts bragged about the size of their portfolios, but didn't seem to care about the clients. On day one at Ayco, Barbera overheard a client tell a financial coach, "Thank you for saving lives."
Barbera is at the internship 40 hours per week over nine weeks this summer. He's working on a team helping to prepare slides, or Excel sheets or tables. He's producing data for upper management. And perhaps, a year from now, he'll be in Ghobriel's position and supervising the next Siena intern.