Before I started my Princeternship, my alumnus, Eckhart Richter ‘98, provided me with a few documents to read: one was an overview of his fund and the other was an article about how the financial system and macro economy fit together. This background was helpful in getting a better understanding of his work and allowed me to formulate a few questions that I had about the readings and the industry in general.
On the first day, I leisurely woke up at 10:00 am because Mr. Richter had a meeting in New York City and would not be back to his NJ office until 2:00 pm that afternoon. I appreciated the few extra hours of sleep, and the 35-minute commute from my house to South Shore Asset Management was quite painless. Upon my arrival, I was happily greeted by Mr. Richter.
We started the day by learning about his firm, particularly the details about the fund he manages and the interplay of the financial markets. Since I didn’t have a detailed understanding of the industry itself, I learned a lot about asset management, differences between various funds and fund managers, and the financial system as a whole.
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
I arrived in the morning to begin my day with Mr. Richter, spending most of our time in his office where we discussed balance sheets and income statements of companies and how they were relevant to analysts on Wall Street. We went over in detail the components of these documents and the particular information that was used to extrapolate the investment value of firms.
We then went to lunch at a famous local pizzeria, where we had the chance to talk about his Princeton experience. Interestingly enough, we both had a common extracurricular activity in which we both had many stories to share.
The rest of the afternoon was spent asking questions and picking Mr. Richter’s brain about his views on the financial industry. His insights and guidance were extremely valuable and helpful as he offered a perspective that focused on what is important in the “real world,” rather than the abstract theories I learned in my finance classes.
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
The final day of my Princeternship was a little less structured than the first two days, and I had the opportunity to converse with Mr. Richter about his time at Princeton and his decision to start his own firm. We talked about his thesis, his college life without places like Olive’s and Fruity Yogurt on Nassau, and his professional journey that led him to where he is today. I also enjoyed the opportunity to eat lunch with his wife and their one and a half year old son that afternoon.
Overall, taking part in this experience was both informative and enjoyable. I am so appreciative of the time he spent answering all my questions and making sure I was clear on all the concepts he taught me. His sage advice has not gone unnoticed. We definitely plan to keep in touch.