Updated: Mar 11
We had the opportunity of interviewing Oliver Sun, an alum from Princeton University about: Balancing His Career
Oliver is currently a Manager in the Wealth field with the Equity Index Research team at London Stock Exchange Group. He graduated from Princeton University in 2016 with a concentration in the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and a certificate in Finance. He has an expansive work experience ranging from marketing and quantitative strategies to wealth management and private banking.
As a high school valedictorian, Oliver was also a part of Mock Trial, Science Olympiad, the Charlotte Symphony Youth Orchestra, and others.
Here are some important words Oliver shares:
"Having diverse experience means that you can always have an answer when faced with a new or difficult situation. Bringing a scientific perspective to a financial question or a law perspective to an IT challenge can help you create new and innovative solutions."
"Never stop learning, never rest on your laurels, always strive to be the best, and once you are the best, make the best better."
Q: Could you briefly describe your current career path in your own words?
A: I started out in wealth management in my internship. This led to a full-time offer in wealth management at Credit Suisse, but unfortunately Credit Suisse sold their private banking business before I graduated. However, I was recruited into their index strategy team, and I learned a lot of technical skills in this role. I always wanted to return to wealth management, so I reached out to some contacts at Morgan Stanley, who helped refer me to a financial advisor team there. Working at Morgan Stanley was a phenomenal experience because my role combined the technical expertise of my first job with the direct client interaction that is so great about wealth management. My current role is as a manager at London Stock Exchange Group, a company that traditionally has provided indices for institutions, and my primary responsibility is increasing our market exposure to the private wealth segment.
Q: Given your extensive experience in the business and finance world, how do you think majoring in Public and International Affairs has helped you in your career?
A: Understanding policy helps you understand how business leaders think and how they are likely to make decisions that will affect their companies and employees. In addition, my economics-focused coursework has been very helpful with my finance-related jobs.
Q: You have a very well-rounded experience with experience in science, law, IT, business, and finance. How do you think being well-rounded has benefited or disadvantaged you in your career field?
A: Having diverse experience means that you can always have an answer when faced with a new or difficult situation. Bringing a scientific perspective to a financial question or a law perspective to an IT challenge can help you create new and innovative solutions.
Q: What do you enjoy about your current job? Why?
A: The role is new and exciting, as the company is pivoting toward private clients in addition to institutional. As such, I have the opportunity to drive this project using my wealth management background and my technical expertise and index research experience.
Q: What’s one of the most difficult things you’ve faced in your career and how did you overcome it?
A: My first full-time job was extremely technical, and none of my coursework of previous work experience had prepared me for that level of programming expertise required. I learned how to code on the job through tutorials, examples, and help from my colleagues.
Q: What type of student do you think would do well in your career field?
A: There is no specific major that is required in this career field. What is necessary is creative thinking, the ability to relentlessly find solutions to problems, and the drive to continue to learn and evolve with the industry.
Q: What future job prospects are available to you that may incorporate both of these subject areas?
A: Finance is becoming increasingly technologically-oriented in a new type of industry called “fin-tech.”
Q: What future goals do you have in terms of finishing your education, career, and life?
A: Build out a team at my current company focused on the wealth client segment.
Q: How are you able to effectively manage time in your busy life?
A: I find that managing time is easier in the workplace than in school because there is no homework. Most employers these days are respectful of work-life balance, and if you stay on top of your projects during the work day, you have the rest of your time to yourself. You can use this time on hobbies or on personal development such as pursuing a certification program.
Q: What work ethics do you think have led to your success in high school, college, and career?
A: Never stop learning, never rest on your laurels, always strive to be the best, and once you are the best, make the best better.
While you’re here, connect and learn more about Oliver Sun on his LinkedIn.
Want to share your experience on your expertise? Sign up for AlumniAngles to give advice to our audience.
Want to get personalized advice? Apply for AlumniAdvisors to get 1:1 with one of our interviewees! Sign up here.