Summer program spurs investment interest


by Stephen Briggs

Averill Wong and Danielle Bragale are Girls Who Invest - 2019

Pictured (L-R): Averill Wong and Danielle Bragale

This summer Danielle Bragale was JMU’s first student to participate in Girls Who Invest (GWI), a learning, mentorship and internship program founded in 2015 and designed to increase the number of women in asset management careers. After being surrounded by what she calls “90 of the smartest girls I’ve ever met,” the junior quantitative finance major says she understands that “it's important to have diversity in the workplace, because if you have diversity of people, you're going to have diversity of thought, and you'll make better investment decisions.”

The GWI program consists of a four-week, campus-based series of classes and learning sessions, featuring speakers and roundtable opportunities to learn and ask questions of industry professionals. “It gave me a greater appreciation for what I'm learning in a greater context,” Bragale said, “a solid foundation on how this fits into what I want to do.”

Following that, the students spend another six weeks in internships set up by GWI. Bragale’s internship was with asset management firm Angelo Gordon in New York City. “Two of the best things I took from the summer,” she says, “was learning how to advocate for myself and how to create relationships that I know will last a lifetime.”

Bragale now wants other JMU students to have the same sort of transformative and fun experience that she had. At an upcoming lunch meeting of the newly formed Women in Business student organization, she will give a talk about her summer in GWI in an effort to get other Dukes to pursue the opportunity. “Throughout the summer, I thought ‘this is fun,’” she says. “Doing research on these companies, having an opinion on whether you think the company is going to succeed or not, and how you can make money off that opportunity is a really awesome thing to think about—and powerful, too.”

Read more: Danielle Bragale's work with the Research Experience for Undergraduates program.

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Published: Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Last Updated: Thursday, November 2, 2023

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