AEP Alumni Success Stories
Elizabeth Smyth (2010)
- Wilmington, Del.
- BBA, Accounting (2009) | MBA, Accounting (2010)
- Financial Advisor, Wells Fargo Advisors*
Upon graduating, I began working at a local accounting firm performing audits. After almost two years I realized that auditing wasn’t what I wanted to do long-term, and began working at M&T Bank.
I joined M&T’s Management Development Program and moved to Delaware for the position. In my role at M&T, I was able to sell investments and insurance and really enjoyed it. I transitioned to M&T Securities as a junior partner to be a financial consultant.
Within a few months, my partner left to go to Wells Fargo Advisors and I followed shortly afterward. Wells Fargo Advisors offers an intense training program for financial advisors and I knew that I wanted to be a part of it. After three months of training, I began working in the branches and absolutely love it!
How did AEP help you as a college student? Did AEP prepare you for the major you ultimately declared?
When I went to college, I had no idea what I wanted to do. One of the main reasons I chose Niagara was for the Academic Exploration Program. Stephanie (Currie) Chesebro was my advisor and I remember meeting with her quite often.
After many lengthy conversations, we realized that business was the route that was most suitable for me. Stephanie suggested accounting as I could do anything in business with that degree – and that has proven true as I have worked in auditing, management and now finance.
How did Niagara prepare you for the “world of work” (i.e. key coursework, internships, clubs, etc.)?
Niagara offers so many opportunities for business students. I was a member of the Accounting Society and Beta Alpha Psi. The Meet the Accountants Night was a fantastic networking opportunity for the students. I have now attended that event as a student and as a representative of my company.
There were so many internship opportunities and the Career Services Office was fantastic. I utilized them for mock interviews and for help with my resume. I had two internships while at Niagara and eventually was hired by one of the companies. I feel that if you utilize all Niagara has to offer, there’s no way to fail!
Any fun professional tidbits?
Wells Fargo Advisors offers a multitude of networks geared towards diversity. One of them is the Women’s Team Member Network. I joined this and have gone to a couple of events. It promotes women in the workplace and that is something I am passionate about.
* Wells Fargo Advisors is a trade name used by Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC