2021 Best & Brightest Business Majors: James Sorrentino, Binghamton University

James Sorrentino

Binghamton University School of Management

Passionate positive pal who enjoys sharing pasta with friends.”

Fun fact about yourself: I can take a nap anywhere.

Hometown: Oyster Bay, New York

High School: Chaminade High School

Major: Business Administration with a concentration in Finance

Favorite Business Course: Corporate Finance

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  • Finance Society – Co-President
  • Investment Banking Bootcamp Instructor
  • Binghamton Investment Fund – Alumni Chair
  • Deans Mentoring Program – Mentor (2021, 2020), Mentee (2018)
  • Mergers & Acquisitions Case Competition – 1st Place
  • Equity Research Competition – 1st Place
  • MGMT 111 – Intro to Decision Making in Management – Mentor

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • Citigroup – New York, NY – Investment Banking Summer Analyst, Communications
  • New Mountain Capital – New York, NY – Private Equity Operations Intern
  • Jefferies – Binghamton NY – Equity Research Extern
  • Wolfe Research – New York, NY – Summer Associate

Where will you be working after graduation? Citigroup – Investment Banking Analyst

Who is your favorite professor? Professor Dina Layish is my favorite professor because she pushed me to work harder than I ever have. Although I struggled at the time, I truly feel that the experience I gained during my Equity Research class allowed me to perform better in my internships.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? The biggest technical lesson I learned while studying business was the importance of cash. Before attending business school, I did not fully understand the difference between net income and actual cash generation. This understanding helped me learn more about the crucial decisions that managers make to effectively run an enterprise. Business school also taught me the importance of maximizing each individual person’s strengths in order to form a more effective team.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? I would advise business school students to always reach out and speak to industry professionals and learn more about their careers. Connecting with professionals can help to solidify the concepts taught in the classroom and learn how they connect with the real world.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? The focus on mentorship has been the most surprising to me. The School of Management at Binghamton enabled me to meet upperclassmen who helped guide me along my finance education. The information they provided aided me in my academic and professional challenges.

Looking back over your experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently in business school and why? I would have reached out to more professionals and professors in fields other than finance. I spent most of my time in business school laser focused on studying finance, often ignoring other courses that I found interesting. I would have tried to take a few classes in management information systems.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of my three years on the executive board of the Finance Society. As Co-President, I am very fortunate to continue the transfer of finance knowledge and mentor the next class of students. I enjoy being able to create an environment where all people feel welcomed to explore their interest in Finance.

Which classmate do you most admire? Dominic Macri – I first met Dom at a Finance Society meeting first semester freshman year. We decided to team up and we worked together on the M&A Case Competition. Throughout the semester, Dom worked as hard as he could, and he did a great job explaining the very complex concepts to the rest of the team. Whenever our team hit a wall, Dom would dive deeper into the material to solve the problem. He approached every decision with rationality and ensured that all team members found their strengths. Dom now heads the Binghamton Investment Fund, and he has put the same high-level effort into giving back to the Finance community at Binghamton. Dom is the kind of passionate, knowledgeable, and reliable student every business school strives to have in their program.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I would thank Rick Piket’16 for all of the mentorship he provided over my four years of school. I met Rick as a freshman and he later became my mentor at Citi. I remember the night before my interview we spent over two hours going over last-minute preparation. He has always provided me with truthful feedback and pushed me to work harder and do better. I hope to model my mentorship after his example and give all the time and effort that he gave to me.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list? I hope to continue to be a mentor to students who are looking to work in finance. I would have never discovered my interest in finance without my conversations with many industry professionals. I also hope that my work continues to be challenging and engaging for my entire career.

What are your hobbies? I really enjoy skiing with my friends during the winter and going to the beach or hiking in the warmer months. When I cannot get outside, I like to listen to podcasts such as Hidden Brain or watch YouTube videos from Hot Ones.

What made James such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2021?

“James has exemplified the excellence that Binghamton stands for. He is very bright, hard-working, goal-oriented and believes in giving back to others. James has performed at the highest level both academically and outside the classroom. His teams placed first in both the Spire Capital Equity Research and Raymond James Mergers & Acquisitions Case Competitions.  He recognizes that he has benefited from his mentors and fellow students and actively seeks out opportunities to give back to the School of Management community. In addition to serving as co-president of the Finance Society, which is one of our most active student organizations, James has participated in the Emerging Leaders Program and served as a mentor for the Dean’s Mentoring Program. James is always willing to assist with open houses for new students or help a fellow student learn more about the finance field. His passion for finance is infectious. I have seen his impact firsthand in one of the classes I teach, Introduction to Decision Making in Management, where students have greatly benefited from his mentorship. I have every confidence that James will be extremely successful and continue to impact our community long after he graduates.”

George S. Bobinski, Jr., Ph.D.
Associate Dean of Undergraduate, Masters and Executive Programs

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