At KingsCrowd, we strive to give back to our community and create opportunities where we can. This year we awarded four summer internships to students and recent graduates from across the U.S. We’re very excited to work with them over the next few months. We wanted to give you the chance to know them as well, so we put together a few questions for them to answer.
So, without further ado, meet our summer 2020 interns!
First, tell us a little about yourself.
Alex: My name is Alex Thomas, and I’m a rising junior at Tulane studying finance and accounting. I’m originally from Kingsport, Tennessee. My parents used to live in New Orleans, and after hearing all of their amazing New Orleans stories, I decided to attend Tulane. On campus, I’m involved with Green Bull Investment Club, Tulane University Campus Programming, and I serve as a marketing and data analytics intern for Sodexo’s marketing team.
Matt: My name is Matt Greenberg, I live in Los Angeles, California, and I am a rising sophomore at Tulane University. Currently, I am a finance and political economy major, however, I am still looking at different majors to see if they interest me more. On campus I play an active role in the Tamid Group, The Green Bull Club, and I am a freshman representative for the A.B. Freeman School of Business.
Lauren: Hey! I’m Lauren and I live in Wayne, New Jersey. I’m a rising senior at Wellesley College studying neuroscience and economics. This past semester, I studied abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark! At Wellesley, I’m the captain of the varsity fencing team, treasurer of the Class of 2021 Council, Blue Pride Committee Head on Student-Athletic Advisory committee, and member of the Korean Students Association. I love chicken nuggets.
Mateusz: My name is Mateusz Pacholik. You can call me Matt. I am originally from Poland, but I have been living in San Francisco over the last 4 years. I recently graduated from Hult International Business School, majoring in Finance. During my college time, I continued to grow my passion for sports and business. Also, I volunteered for the CFA Society in San Francisco, building its presence on different campuses around the city.
What about KingsCrowd interested you?
Alex: I was first interested in KingsCrowd after reading about all of the learning opportunities this program offers. I want to work in the financial services industry after graduation, but I would like to start my own business and be my own boss at some point in my life. Interning for a startup is a great way to learn more about entrepreneurship. At KingsCrowd, I am being exposed to unique startups in a variety of industries, which is both a great learning experience and very inspiring.
Matt: I found my interest in KingsCrowd by asking myself where I could work that could both help me learn and a place where I could build a strong foundation of integral skills that I will need later in life. I was introduced to KingsCrowd through an internship program at my university as Francis Vu, a senior analyst at KingsCrowd, also attended Tulane. Being able to further my knowledge in valuation and analytical skills this summer was another major reason why I was interested in KingsCrowd.
Lauren: KingsCrowd interested me because it was the first rating and analytics platform for online private markets. I was first introduced to the company through Olivia Strobl, Senior Investment Analyst at KingsCrowd, who is a Wellesley alumna and also part of the athletic community. As I am graduating next year, I am still considering different career paths, and felt that KingsCrowd was the perfect introduction to the startup investment world. Here at KingsCrowd, I feel that I can better hone my skills and make lasting connections with professionals in the field.
Mateusz: Investing has become my passion since I came to the US. Throughout my college time, I have built my portfolio of companies in the public markets. However, what always made me question my skills is how to choose the right companies in the private market. The lack of information, research, and risks involved with investments makes it much more challenging to do the right calls. With that in mind, from the moment I found KingsCrowd, I knew it was the right place for me to solve these problems.
What past experiences prepared you for this internship? What unique perspective do you bring to the table?
Alex: Before KingsCrowd, I had the opportunity to intern at two search fund accelerators, Broadtree Partners and GT Entrepreneurs (GTE). Broadtree was where I started my career and I learned about the search fund model, financial modeling, research, and business in general. I completed my internship at Broadtree remotely, during the spring semester of my freshman year. After Broadtree, I interned at GTE. GTE was not remote, and I gained experience working in teams, giving presentations, and completing more company research and financial modeling. GTE was especially entrepreneurial, as interns were included in discussions about portfolio company operations and were encouraged to make suggestions. I think these experiences have helped me gain a more entrepreneurial and analytical mindset, which will help me succeed at KingsCrowd.
Matt: Being only a rising sophomore, I don’t have a long track record of previous internships to prepare me. Instead, I took many business-related courses during my first year to provide me with enough background to make me feel confident for this internship. The Tamid Group and the Green Bull Club are focused extensively on finance-related material, which was another aspect of school that has taught me countless essential skills. I like to think that I bring to the table a perspective that emphasizes qualitative analysis when analyzing companies. I feel that this is an often-overlooked viewpoint in today’s industry, and I believe that I help KingsCrowd by making sure that qualitative analysis is not forgotten.
Lauren: Last summer, I was a medical affairs intern at Pfizer. At Pfizer, I worked extensively with meta-analyses and medical data and was able to work alongside a team of medical directors while collaborating with legal, finance, and marketing teams to further medical research. The year before that, I worked three jobs, as I was still unclear about my future career endeavors. These experiences allowed me to prove that I can communicate effectively and have strong multitasking capabilities, as well as the ability to work effectively in an environment of stringent deadlines and constant change. As the only STEM major intern on the team, I hope to approach situations with a unique perspective, think outside the box, and use my problem-solving capabilities.
Mateusz: Despite my young age, I am privileged to say that I have worked on two continents (Europe, North America), in three countries (Poland, UK, USA), for both corporations (Daimler) and smaller enterprises (Vaquero Capital). My previous experience is mainly with accounting and finance positions. The most recent one is spending a few months at a San Francisco-based tech investment bank. The variety of my experiences and my international network has prepared me to tackle the biggest challenges of the business world in the 21st century.
Is there anything you’re excited to learn more about this summer?
Alex: I am most excited to learn more about entrepreneurship, different industries, and the crowdfunding ecosystem. After my experiences at GT Entrepreneurs, I became interested in entrepreneurship, and KingsCrowd is an excellent place to learn. The startup crowdfunding space also presents lots of learning opportunities, as it is a popular, rapidly growing industry.
Matt: I am thrilled to learn more about how the startup funding ecosystem works and how it has evolved over the years. I am curious to know how investors use our data to make informed investments on new companies that have the potential of being the next great investment.
Lauren: I look forward to learning more about the equity crowdfunding ecosystem and working with professionals and mentors involved at KingsCrowd, as well as receiving criticism to build my own strengths.
Mateusz: So far, my experience with crowdfunding was only in Europe. Thus, I am excited to learn more about the US early-stage investing ecosystem. Also, I cannot wait to get more exposure to different areas of building a company like KingsCrowd.
Give us a book or show recommendation. What have you been reading/watching during quarantine?
Alex: I have to recommend Fargo. It is a fast-paced show that keeps you on your toes, while still maintaining a serious tone. I haven’t finished the show, but so far, it’s served as a nice distraction from the COVID-19 related disruptions we’ve seen during the last few months.
Matt: I recently started re-watching the show Lost with my family, and I think that it is one of the best shows in the last 20 years. Now, more than ever, you can relate with the situation the characters are in as this quarantine is making us all feel stranded and is testing our mental strength. A book that I loved reading was Den of Thieves (by James B. Stewart), as not only was it a fantastic story with lots of unexpected twists, but it has helped me think about my long-term career goals.
Lauren: Given the fact that I’ve been in quarantine since mid-March, I’ve had nothing but time to catch up on shows and movies, both old and new, and read some interesting books. I’d recommend Arrested Development on Hulu (since I’m a huge Jason Bateman fan), All-American and 13th on Netflix, and Game of Thrones on HBO. In terms of books, I’d recommend So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo and The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. Both books are incredibly thought-provoking and tell powerful stories.
Mateusz: [For a book,] The Future of Power by Joseph S. Nye – it perfectly captures the determinants of power in the 21st century polarized geopolitical landscape. After many years of hearing great things about Mad Men, I finally decided to watch it. No spoilers, please!
Last one. Tell us something interesting about yourself. Do you have a cool hobby or secret talent?
Alex: I really enjoy hiking in my free time. There are many hiking trails where I grew up in East Tennessee, and hiking was a frequent weekend activity. Since I’m home this summer, I’ve been able to hike more than normal, which is always nice. I also play guitar. I started playing guitar about 9 months ago, and it’s probably the best hobby I have ever taken up. For anyone considering learning a new instrument, I would absolutely recommend you start. After the initial learning curve, it is a lot of fun.
Matt: Being from California, I have spent a lot of my childhood outside in the fantastic year-round weather and I have always been fond of riding a longboard on summer evenings with my friends. Those experiences will never leave me no matter what city I end up living in.
Lauren: I am a nationally competitive fencer. I’ve traveled all over the country to participate in tournaments, competed in Junior Olympics, and trained with the Russian National Team with some other members of my fencing club in Latvia. I’m also the clumsiest athlete that I know. I also like to golf and play volleyball with friends and family.
Mateusz: Since I was 6-years old, I was trained in soccer. I had a chance to represent my state on a national stage as well as participate in many European-level tournaments. Beyond a good movie, book, or hang-out with friends, I enjoy tasting new red wines.