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I have categorized my potential career paths into two distinct options: finance and marketing. As an economics major with the Integrated Marketing Communications certificate, I am naturally inclined to job opportunities in these fields. I would be thrilled to work in an environment in which economic developments impact daily decisions and investments. At the same time, I have great interest in consumer psychology and effectively positioning brands to a targeted audience. Last winter, my internship applications were split 50/50 between finance and marketing.

What's the view from Kelly's cube? GCM Grosvenor in Chicago.

What’s the view from Kelly’s cube? GCM Grosvenor in Chicago.

I was very excited about my offer from GCM Grosvenor because it incorporates both of my interests. GCM Grosvenor is an asset management firm based in Chicago that is focused on alternative investments. The marketing division specializes in creating content and presentations that explain its funds to potential clients, both institutional investors and high net worth individuals. As a marketing intern, I am expected to understand all areas of the business: investment strategies, fund performance, market news, and the process of acquiring new investors and maintaining existing client relationships. I am continually reading about the investment management industry while learning how to target and market to hedge fund investors.

There are about 30 interns at GCM Grosvenor this summer, spread out mainly between the Investments, Client Services, Finance and IT divisions. Although we do not all work together every day, GCM Grosvenor sets up information sessions and events to bring us together. We attend “Lunch and Learns” three times a week, in which Managing Directors and Vice Presidents give us a presentation on their functional areas and allow significant time for questions. These sessions are an effective way for us to learn about GCM Grosvenor’s different divisions and the hedge fund and private equity industries. In general, GCM Grosvenor is a firm with a very strong culture of interaction and inclusiveness, giving interns great exposure to all levels of the business.

We have also had several “Strategy Overview” sessions to learn about hedge fund strategies in the credit, equities and commodities asset classes. This is a great educational resource for interns since we do not learn much about alternative investments at school. Aside from informational meetings, GCM Grosvenor plans social activities after work for the interns. So far, we have attended a cooking class at The Chopping Block Cooking School and a White Sox game.

I am currently working on two main projects that I will present to the Marketing Team at the end of the summer. Although I am only halfway through my internship, I have learned an incredible amount about alternative investments and have worked with very talented and helpful individuals.  GCM Grosvenor has intently focused on making our internship experiences diverse and meaningful. And I’ve learned something important through this experience—there are ways to combine functional interests.

Kelly Cadden will be a senior at Northwestern this year and is majoring in Economics with the Integrated Marketing Communications certificate.