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Featured Events | Apr 18, 2017 |

Women in Leadership Conference points students toward their future

For women preparing to enter the business world, the path to career success can sometimes seem less than clear.

That’s where industry leaders at this year’s Women in Leadership Conference, sponsored by Smart Woman Securities, stepped in.

Among the speakers were Ashley Cotton, executive vice president for external affairs at Forest City Ratner Companies, Terri Ferri, branch manager and senior vice president at Morgan Stanley, members of the American Woman’s Society of CPAs, and executives from GAMCO, the asset management company owned by Mario J. Gabelli, BS ’65.

To start the morning, female CPAs spoke about their experience in accounting. Eva Minsteris, senior managing director at JSB Partners, got right to the point: accountants are needed. Their skills are in high demand, there’s tremendous job security, and the industry is resilient during recession.

For women seeking jobs in any field, Marissa Wolpinsky of the financial services audit practice at Deloitte Touche LLP noted how important it is to find balance in life. Students should focus on landing strong internships and building foundations of knowledge within their chosen field, but they should also be sure to take time out for other interests.

The term “hustle”—meaning relentlessly working hard and doing whatever is needed in order to get ahead—is used in the business world for a reason, and certainly, Minsteris said, you will always be working hard. However, if you can make the right connections in the right places, then you can determine your own destiny.

Even for those who know exactly what their journey will look like, flexibility is key. Don’t be afraid, Wolpinsky advised, of moving into different fields if the opportunity for progression presents itself.

“If I didn’t think I could move further in the field I was in, I would get comfortable looking at a different field,” she said.

While the path to success may not be straight, or short, the goal is within reach for those willing to put in the work.

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