Andrew Lo, the Charles E. and Susan T. Harris Professor at the Sloan School, told the students they had some of the biggest advantages of any generation in history, with “enormous amounts of information and tools at your fingertips,” but also some of the greatest challenges—climate change, flu pandemics, cybersecurity threats, and systemic risk in the financial system.
He also reflected on the meaning of the ten-year anniversary of of the financial crisis, which is now in the spotlight. “Finance doesn’t have to be a zero sum game,” he said. “You can do well by doing good if you use that power responsibly—and I suspect all of you will.”
And now for the awards…
Commencement awards went to:
Question the Status Quo: Achuthan Sekar
Confidence Without Attitude: Shravan Sunkada
Students Always: Manas Shah
Beyond Yourself: Yasmine Moulehiawy
All Four Defining Leadership Principles: Jules Landry-Simard
The Heart & Ethics Award: Pedro Zonari
Valedictorian and Salutatorian: Cheryl Xu and Jules Landry-Simard
University of California, Office of the President Award: Amneet Singh
Alum Who “Helped us Day and Night”: Frank Xia, MFE 17
Best Applied Science Project (sponsored by Morgan Stanley): Tao (Tony) Tong, Manas Shah, Manoj Cherukumalli and Yasmine Moulehiawy
In his speech, class president Ivan Nurminsky noted the great support the class received from Kreitzman and the MFE staff. “They were very much our adoptive parents through this journey,” he said. Snow Wang, class vice president, thanked the faculty. “It’s because of professors like them who genuinely have a passion for student learning that Berkeley has had its place in the world for the past 150 years,” he said.
During the program, all of the students held internships in areas such as big data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, working in hedge funds, investment and commercial banking, asset management, and financial services. The majority will go on to work in the U.S. or London at such firms as Citadel, PIMCO, BlackRock, Squarepoint Capital, and Morgan Stanley.