2024 Best & Brightest Business Major: Haig Chakamian, Syracuse University (Whitman)

Haig Chakamian

The Martin J. Whitman School of Management, Syracuse University

“A driven individual with a joyous character that strives to bring light to any room.”

Fun fact about yourself:  I won an intermural basketball MVP award.

Hometown: Closter, New Jersey

High School: Northern Valley Regional High School at Demarest

Major: Finance and Business Analytics

Minor: Information Management & Technology and Sociology

Favorite Business Course: Data Management for Business with Professor of Finance Practice Penelope Pooler Eisenbies

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  • Whitman Class Marshal
  • Whitman Undergraduate Board Member
  • Whitman Scholar
  • Orange Value Fund
    • Senior Analyst
    • Junior Analyst
  • Syracuse University Investment Club
    • President
    • Contrarian Fund Manager
  • Delta Sigma Pi, Professional Business Fraternity
    • Vice President of Finance
    • Vice President of Alumni Relations
  • The Student Association at Syracuse University & SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF)
    • Chief Data Officer
    • Whitman Assembly Representative
  • Whitman Student Ambassador
  • Dean’s List

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • Credit Suisse, New York, New York: Sales and trading summer analyst
  • PGIM, Newark, New York: Operations and innovations summer intern
  • Myriad Wealth Management, Old Tappan, New Jersey: Intern

Where will you be working after graduation? NatWest Markets as a USD rates sales analyst

Who is your favorite business professor? My favorite business professor is Penelope Pooler Eisenbies. I had her for three different classes: Statistics, Introduction to Business Analytics, and Data Management for Business. Professor Pooler Eisenbies does an excellent job in applying the concepts we learn in class to practical situations. This has allowed me to succeed in my internship experiences. Moreover, she clearly breaks down daunting tasks, such as coding, making it easier to learn these crucial skills.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? Studying business has taught me the importance of building a network with my peers in class, faculty at Whitman and professionals in the industry. These relationships have allowed me to grow, flourish, and expand my horizons as I navigated my undergraduate career and internship recruitment. I’ve met so many individuals who are willing to help me by providing their advice, and they’ve taught me the importance of mentorship, which I hope to pay forward in the future.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? Have an open mind! I started out at the Whitman School as a marketing major, but, after taking Introduction to Finance and speaking to others, I had an open mind and decided to pursue finance further. This allowed me to find my true passion.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? The most surprising part about studying business was real world application. I found that a lot of the skills I learned in the classroom, I carried over to my internships. I owe this to my professors, who have been great in ensuring that we learn in a way that is highly applicable.

Looking back over your experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently in business school and why? One thing I’d do differently in business school is study abroad in order to have a more global perspective. As the business world becomes more interconnected, I think this would have been an enriching experience. With that being said, I am extremely grateful for the on-campus experiences I had through all semesters.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am extremely proud of putting together the SU Career Closet as a member of the Student Government Association. During my sophomore year, I wanted to build a place on campus for students to exchange professional dresswear and get a new outfit. During my junior year, I was able to work with Vice President of University Affairs Yasmin Nayrouz to obtain $10,000 in funding to buy suits for undergrads. The event was so successful that my budget doubled for this year. I’m hoping this can be a lasting tradition on campus long after I have graduated.

Which classmate do you most admire? The meaning of friendship changed for me when I met Tage Oster. Tage has been both an inspiration and a role model. Whether it be professional assistance or just a friend to talk to, Tage is the go-to person. His leadership within the Kenya Trip, Interfraternity Council (IFC), Enactus and the Orange Value Fund make him a leader on campus, and his passion, kindness and sociability make him an even better friend. I have complete confidence that Tage has influenced me and my peers’ undergraduate experience and success. Words cannot fully encompass my gratitude for what he has brought to this community. He is kind, intelligent, funny, resourceful and, most importantly, loyal. Very few men in this world can say they’ve found their brother. However, I am privileged enough to make that statement about Tage Oster.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? While I feel success is an accumulation of every person I’ve ever met in my life, the person that stands out the most is my mother. She has told me from as far back as I can remember that anything is possible, and that, if you can apply yourself to a situation, you can achieve whatever you want. She continues to be by my side in everything that I strive to achieve, and I cannot thank her enough. Thanks, Mom!

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

The first thing on my professional bucket list is to set up a fundraising/networking event during the month of October for breast cancer awareness. In 2008, I lost my aunt from breast cancer, and I’d love to use my professional network to raise awareness and help in the fight against this disease. The second item is to help undergrads at Syracuse University get into finance jobs/internships. After starting my business school journey as a marketing major, I owe my switch to finance entirely to the alumni who guided me throughout my underclassman journey and prepared me for the Wall Street recruitment cycles.

What made Haig such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2024?

“Haig Chakamian was my student in three different courses, and he stands out as one of the best students I have ever had. He enhanced my lectures and the understanding of his fellow students by asking perceptive questions, and he genuinely enjoyed the assignments and was eager to go beyond the required material. Aside from my courses, Haig handles his impressive academic workload and extra-curricular commitments with grace and the positive attitude of someone eager to learn more and contribute to his community. He demonstrates genuine intellectual curiosity, is helpful and kind, embodies the ideals of the Whitman School and

Syracuse University and is truly an asset to our university and his graduating class.”

Penelope Pooler Eisenbies
Professor of Finance Practice (Statistics)



Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.