2023 Best & Brightest Business Major: Geeta Jhangiani, Tulane University (Freeman)

Geeta Jhangiani

Tulane University, AB Freeman School of Business

“Ambitious student, passionate about fostering diversity in business leadership, who loves Zumba and making music!”

Fun fact about yourself: I participated in the Junior Olympics for fencing when I was in high school and was the Great Lakes Conference Champion in 2019.

Hometown: Vernon Hills, IL

High School: Adlai E. Stevenson High School

Major: Finance

Minor: Accounting

Favorite Business Course: My favorite business course was the Aaron Selber, Jr. Course on Hedge Funds. In this class, we learned about alternative investing through an in-depth analysis of hedge fund investments and strategies. After building a foundation of knowledge through lectures, case studies, research papers, and guest speakers, we created an investment pitch with teams for a new investment strategy. We worked one-on-one with hedge fund executives as our mentors and, at the end of the semester, presented our pitches to CIOs and general partners at hedge funds across the nation.

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles:

  • Founder and President of Women Investing in Women, an organization I created for women interested in finance to learn vital skills for the industry and network with like-minded individuals
  • Deans’ Honor Scholar at Tulane University, an award and merit-based full-tuition scholarship given to 50 of over 1,000 applicants
  • Treasurer and Advisor for Hearts for the Homeless, an organization focused on promoting heart health for the unhoused population of New Orleans
  • Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Phi Mu, Female Fraternity
  • Investment Research Manager at Tulane Burkenroad Reports
  • Member of Feminist Alliance of Students at Tulane
  • Member of Mixed Martial Arts Club
  • Court Watch Volunteer at Court Watch NOLA
  • Selected Academic Fellow for the Mercatus Center at George Mason University
  • Tutor for statistics and accounting classes
  • Tulane Honors
  • Dean’s List (all semesters)
  • Beta Alpha Psi Honor Society
  • Beta Gamma Sigma Business Honor Society
  • Fall 2022 Steward Foundation Case Competition Finalist
  • BMO William A. Downe Scholarship
  • STAC (Security Trader Association of Chicago) Fund Scholarship

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • Investment Banking Summer Analyst at William Blair (May 2022 – July 2022) – Chicago, IL
  • Growth Intern at Alinea, Y Combinator W21 (Nov 2021 – Feb 2022) – Remote/New York, NY
  • Summer Analyst at Tulane Investment Management Office (Jul 2021 – Aug 2021) – Darien, CT
  • Summer Intensive Program (May 2021) and Campus Ambassador for Girls Who Invest (Jun 2021 – Present) – Remote/Philadelphia, PA
  • Financial Planning Intern at Ayco, a Goldman Sachs Company (Jan 2021 – May 2021) – Remote/Deerfield, IL
  • Risk Management Intern at Consumers Credit Union (Jun 2020 – Jan 2021) – Remote/Gurnee, IL
  • Intern for Sandra R. Simon, Attorney at Law (Jun 2018-Present) – Remote/Riverwoods, IL

Where will you be working after graduation? I will be working at William Blair as an Investment Banking Analyst in the Corporate Advisory Group in New York, NY.

Who is your favorite business professor? My favorite professor is Christine Smith because of her passion for teaching and the betterment of her students. I first met Professor Smith as a senior in high school and prospective student at a Tulane Information Session in Chicago. Through our brief conversation, I could already tell that I would want her as my professor. During my first semester at Tulane, I had Professor Smith as my Financial Accounting professor. She always succeeded in keeping students engaged throughout every class. Professor Smith would walk around the class to get everyone to participate, and she even made a square dance to help us remember the accounting cycle. Whenever I had a question, Professor Smith was eager to set up a time to help me. Two years later, in my junior year, I took Intermediate Accounting with Professor Smith. She was just as driven to make sure her students understood the content and made our class so intriguing. Professor Smith drove me to pursue a minor in accounting, and I am so grateful for everything she has done for me through my four years at Tulane.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? The biggest lesson that I learned from studying business is the importance of collaboration. In a school setting, collaboration can bring multiple viewpoints to the table, helping a group provide a unique value and holistic solutions to complex problems. From the perspective of advancing a career, collaboration is essential through networking. In business, networking is so significant, and good collaboration and communication skills make it more effective. Finally, through many experiential learning and application-based courses I’ve taken, working effectively in a team was one of the main factors in succeeding and learning in the class, which emphasizes the value of collaboration in the workforce.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? One piece of advice I would give to a student looking to study business would be to use their college experience to learn about multiple careers and jobs in various fields. One aspect that set apart Tulane’s experience for me was that we didn’t have to declare a major until we took an introductory class for each potential major in the business school. I liked that we were able to learn about the different fields to get a well-rounded knowledge base and think about possible careers with each educational path. Equally as important as learning in class, I think internships and networking are also key parts of learning about career opportunities. By networking with professionals in fields you may be interested in and getting hands on learning experiences in the workforce through internships, you are able to deepen your understanding of different fields and solidify your confidence in what you want to do.

Another piece of advice I have for business students is to make sure their college experience is well-rounded. While succeeding academically is pertinent, I also think that all students should join organizations, get involved with the local community, and have fun. College is a time to not only grow professionally, but also personally. Exploring your personal interests, cultivating friendships, and actively participating in organizations are equally necessary to your growth during college. Time management and work-life balance are critical skills to implement through your whole career, and starting to improve these skills in college will help you once you enter the workforce.

Looking back over your experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently in business school and why? One thing I would do differently would be to study abroad. I always wanted to go abroad to learn more about different cultures, broaden my perspectives, and travel the world. Due to the uncertainty of the pandemic and other commitments, I didn’t study abroad during the semester that I had originally planned to. Nevertheless, I always strive to learn about other cultures and traditions, and I plan to travel more for business and personal trips in the future.

What business leader do you admire most?  The business leader I admire most is Mary Erdoes, the CEO of JPMorgan Chase’s Asset & Wealth Management line of business. As one of the most influential women in finance, she is someone I have always looked up to. Mary Erdoes leads with a combination of compassion and analytical skills, and she is passionate about supporting women and fostering diversity among her employees. Outside of the workplace, she finds time to give back and is a board member of UNICEF. I aspire to be a leader like her and make a positive influence in finance the way she has.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of?  I am most proud of creating Women Investing in Women (WIW), an organization at Tulane for women interested in finance. When I started at Tulane, I realized that we didn’t have an organization for women in finance. When I talked to a few classmates, I found that it wasn’t something that only I wanted. Noticing that there was a true need for such an organization, I put myself up to the challenge of creating an organization. I talked to various business professors to find an advisor, presented a pitch for club approval to Tulane’s Undergraduate Student Government, and budgeted out the organization’s needs for financing. By my second semester at Tulane, Women Investing in Women was a registered organization. I started leading weekly meetings, consisting of academic and professional workshops, current events discussions, networking events, and speaker events. Despite the pandemic, we kept interest high and grew the WIW community through virtual events. I am proud that I created this space for women at Tulane and that it will continue to thrive after I graduate as a group dedicated to helping women succeed in the finance industry.

Which classmate do you most admire? The classmate I most admire is Ashley Carollo. Ashley and I have been classmates and friends since high school, and she has never failed to amaze me with her academic prowess, dedication to extracurricular activities, and innate leadership. This semester, Ashley will complete the 5-year joint BSM/Master of Accounting Program one year early, all while being a student-athlete and teacher assistant. Ashley and I met in an accounting class in high school, and we have since grown our professional and personal friendship through the many classes we’ve taken at Tulane together. Despite Ashley’s other commitments, she always prioritized our study sessions and excelled academically. I am so proud of her and can’t wait to see what she accomplishes at Ernst & Young next year!

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I would want to thank my parents most for my success. I learned so much about the business world through my dad, as he also works in finance. As I grew up, he would teach me about his job and help me find people to shadow and talk to in other career paths. Once I realized I wanted to go into finance, he helped me navigate the industry and constantly inspired me. Along with my dad’s help, my mom’s warm-hearted yet powerful nature shaped me into the woman I am today. She showed me how to stand up for what I believe in and be a strong and passionate leader. From the values I have learned from both of my parents to their unconditional love and encouragement, they have empowered me to succeed, and I couldn’t be more thankful to have them as my support system.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list?

  1. Manage and lead a company, whether that means running my own company one day or working my way up in leadership at an existing firm.
  2. Teach a college course on something I have learned through my professional experiences, focusing on finance, strategy, leadership, consulting, or a combination of those disciplines.

What are your hobbies? My favorite hobbies are Zumba, weightlifting, guitar, piano, cooking, and hiking!

What made Geeta such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2023?

“I had the pleasure of having Geeta in a by-application-only, experiential course on hedge funds. All of the students in the course are the best-of-the-best: smart and motivated, but Geeta distinguished herself. Her course work demonstrated that her ability to think globally and creatively about complex and independent financial markets is unparalleled. And her positive attitude and infectious enthusiasm for the material made her a dynamic and engaging presenter as well as everyone’s favorite team member. Geeta is also a mentor and leader outside of the classroom as well.  As a professor there are students you teach and students with whom you learn and grow together- Geeta is definitely one of the latter.”

Mara Baumgarten-Force
Professor of Practice


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