After exploring many avenues of the finance sector and working several summer internships, Jacob Han ’21 will be joining J.P. Morgan as an investment banking analyst in the real estate, gaming, and lodging division.
Both Han’s parents and his brother work in finance, so he already had some level of interest in the field. However, it was not until high school when he realized he actually enjoyed finance. He participated in some business competitions and found he wanted to gain some real-world experience.
Unsure of what aspect of finance he was interested in, Han worked as an intern in wealth management the summer after his first year at Hamilton. He realized it wasn’t for him and continued to explore different services. Toward the end of his sophomore year, he began focusing on sales/trading and investment banking.
“That summer, I was in New York City with an internship, so that allowed me to connect with a lot of different people,” Han said.
Hometown: Vienna, Va.
High school: George C. Marshall High School
During the pandemic last summer, he worked virtually as an investment banking summer analyst at J.P. Morgan. The 10-week program was condensed into an accelerated five-week session due to COVID-19. “It was really great because the J.P. Morgan team I was on was very inclusive, very supportive,” he said. “Although I was very nervous at the time, they gave me the instructions and the blueprint on how to be successful.”
Han was given more responsibilities than in his previous summer internships, such as contributing to the pitch book, listening on client calls, and taking notes. He particularly enjoyed the collaborative team aspect of the work.
“Having the liberal arts background can be looked at as a disadvantage in finance, but I’d argue that it actually put me at an advantage because it helped me develop my problem-solving skills and how to work with people who aren’t necessarily like you, or who take a different approach to things,” Han said. “That was something that really helped me for my summer internship because Hamilton, not being a finance school, taught me [how] to conquer that sort of steep slope.”
After his virtual J.P. Morgan internship, Han is looking forward to living in New York City. A few of the other analysts that were in his intern class will be joining him full-time.
“This past summer …was completely virtual, and that was a huge challenge for me, so I’m really excited to see the people on the team in-person and to be there with them face-to-face,” Han said. “There’s so much value in that. We worked really well together, and the senior analysts were great mentors for me over the summer. I’m really looking forward to working alongside them.”
Although he is unsure what the future holds, Han is excited to continue his work at J.P. Morgan. Reflecting on the application process, he cites his older brother, an investment banking analyst at Barclays, as a tremendous mentor.
“When I was going through the recruiting process — it’s a really long, tiring process — he helped guide me throughout that and supported me,” Han said. “I wouldn’t be here without his guidance.”