Getting to the Chicago Mercantile Exchange from UIC Business

by Saif Sarvana

I’m an intern at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and a junior at UIC Business, though I’m just now finishing my second semester here. I transferred from the College of DuPage over the summer of 2015. Why did I transfer to UIC? The short answer is the value of the UIC Business program. What does that mean? Well, here’s the long answer.

I was curious about markets and finance from an early age, and I’ve been investing for a long time. I bought my first stock when I was twelve. I still remember the symbol. When I was a kid, I could read the Chicago Tribune business section at home, and Forbes, Fortune and The Economist at my local library. I grew up in Naperville and attended Waubonsie Valley High School, where I took all of the business classes that were offered and was a member of the business club.

I enrolled at College of DuPage in 2012. While there, I interned in the wealth management departments at UBS and Morgan Stanley.  After Morgan Stanley, I left for Germany on a scholarship from the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange and studied in Mainz for a semester, followed by a semester as an auditing intern for Mittelrheinische Treuhand in Frankfurt. After Germany, I returned to College of DuPage and started thinking about UIC.

Location was a big draw. I was looking for internships downtown, and UIC is on the edge of the loop. More importantly, I know a lot of people who went to UIC and have done really well. It makes other schools look overpriced. In August of 2015, I enrolled.  My UIC coursework has already proved its worth. IDS 331 has been especially valuable for the work I’m doing at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, and FIN 449 has given me fresh perspectives on investment problems. BA 420 changed how I operate in the workplace.

Alongside my path to UIC is my path to CME. At 18, I wanted to be in wealth management. But after the internships at UBS and Morgan Stanley, I saw that wealth management is mostly sales. I needed something more analytical. At CME, I analyze the flow of money across the organization, which encompasses NYME, CBOE, the Chicago Board of Trade, and much else. I’m really in my wheelhouse.

I don’t graduate from UIC until May 2017, but I can already say that the UIC Business degree is a good value. And just as importantly, the UIC Business location has put me right where I want to be.

For more information on internship opportunities for UIC Business students, visit the UIC Business Career Center.

Photo courtesy of CME.