Centre College students preparing for life after graduation have access to a community of alumni eager to help them in their career search. Ben Coates ’18 of Lexington, Kentucky, has a mentor in Kevin Taylor ’85, who helped Coates find his spring internship at Wealth South, a financial service based in Danville that develops and manages investment portfolios. The economics and finance major was first introduced to Taylor during his time as president of Centre’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon chapter, of which Taylor is an alumnus.
“He could not be more helpful. He has re-written my resume, re-written my cover letter, and he has helped me get in contact with different bank presidents,” Coates says.
Coates’ primary responsibility at Wealth South consists of reviewing investment policies to ensure that a client’s assets fit within the policy they have purchased. He also has access to the company’s accounts, helping him understand more about the individual corporations in which Wealth South invests its clients’ wealth.
“My internship is very beneficial for Centre’s Investment Society, for which I’m vice-president, because I have the knowledge to help other students if they are interested in following a similar career path as me,” he says.
This is Coates’ second internship with Wealth South. During CentreTerm 2018, he worked for the company as a commercial lending intern. Although he prefers the work he is doing now in investments, his experience in loans has allowed him to apply for job positions in both sides of banking.
In fact, Coates recently interviewed for a portfolio manager position at Wealth South’s Lexington branch.
“I definitely want to work at a regional bank,” he explains. “I think the atmosphere is a lot more comfortable than a national corporation. Community banks are really focused on helping their customers and are involved at the local level.”
While Coates acknowledges the importance of the quantitative skills learned in his major, he finds that his internship experiences have been invaluable in preparing him for life after graduation.
“What is hard to learn is the teamwork and personal skills of working in an office, especially when you take a management role,” he concludes. “One of the first things I do is ask the managers if I can set up meetings to talk with them about their experiences.”
By Carbery Campbell ’19
March 16, 2018