Finance Association

Homepage for the Penn State Smeal MBA Finance Association

The mission of the MBA Finance Association is to prepare Smeal students for a career in both corporate and investment finance. Careers in finance are related to both the internal perspective of the firm and the external perspective of the markets. The association is designed to give students access to Smeal alumni and current business leaders who can help mentor students with a professional interest in finance. Additionally, the Association provides internal support to students for their professional development efforts in the field of finance.

Officer Bios

Portrait of Matthew Young.

Matthew Young, President

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Matthew Young graduated with a B.S. in Finance from the University of Maryland Global Campus in 2018. Previous to joining Smeal, Matthew served in the United States Army as a Petroleum Supply Specialist. There he worked in a logistics role, managing fuel resources for a unit of 200 people while stationed in Germany.  He also has several years of personal financial planning and investing experience He joined the Smeal MBA program to continue building his business and finance skill sets, and is interested in pursuing a career in financial analysis or operations management.

 As President of the Finance Association, Matthew plans to help build a confident, well-informed community of professionals. Through informative outreach and professional development, he hopes the Association can become a resource for both those pursuing employment in finance, as well as all MBA students interested in personal financial success.

Portrait of Supriya Sarkar.

Supriya Sarkar, VP of Operations

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I began my career as a Process Engineer after graduating with a degree in Chemical Engineering. I have 10 years experience in different job functions in organizations such as Ecolab and Fluor. Working with diverse teams to solve business problems is something that I have enjoyed the most. I had the opportunity to provide hazardous waste management solutions to major oil industry clients, and identify and develop new clients in potential markets. My focus is to work in an organization that provides challenging career opportunities and an environment to evolve.

As the VP of the Finance Association, I will try to maximize student participation and meet expectations.

Portrait of Santos Lopez Flores. Santos Lopez Flores, VP of Professional Development

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Santos is originally from La Ceiba, Honduras. After obtaining a dual Bachelor of Science in Management and Economics from the University of the Ozarks in May 2011, Santos moved back to Honduras. He started his career as a financial analyst at Ficohsa Bank, which is the biggest Honduran bank. After almost two years in the banking industry, Santos switched towards the CPG industry. He spent four years in commercial finance at Unilever and spearheaded different projects in the Central American region. Prior to coming to Smeal, Santos led the FP&A team at Intur Group for one year. Intur Group is a Honduran holding company with investments in several industries in Central America.

As VP of Professional Development, Santos plans to foster alumni mentor-ship through increased communication. He will also focus on leveraging internal and external resources to further develop the skills of those interested in a career in finance.

Past Association Events

Past Association events have included; a trip to Omaha to meet Warren Buffett, an annual corporate sponsored golf tournament, networking events and dinners with Fortune 500 companies, and lunch sessions with professors discussing financial impacts of current events.

The MBA Finance Association standing outside on the steps leading up to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

On February 21, 2014, the MBA Finance Association went on a NYC Roadshow with 23 members. We learned about the US Central Banking System at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, got to visit the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange, spoke directly to the President of the Bank of New York Mellon, and saw the closing bell at NASDAQ.

Here’s what the members said were the best part of the trip:

"The coolest part of the trip was being able to go down to the trading floor of the NYSE and talk directly to a Designated Market Maker." Anthony Cheng [2013-2014 Finance Association VP of Treasury], Smeal MBA Class of ‘14

The MBA Finance Association visiting the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

"It's always exciting to visit and learn more about places with such a history behind them, but I have to say that such a friendly meeting with President of BNY Mellon was definitely one of the highlights not only in my MBA but also in my entire life so far." Masoud Ghayoumi [2013-2014 Finance Association VP of Corporate Relations], Smeal MBA Class of ‘14

“The best part for me was becoming a millionaire, even if only for a couple minutes. Deep within the Federal Reserve's vault, I had the opportunity to hold two 30lb gold bars valued at over $500,000 each!” Jeff Goff, Smeal MBA Class of ‘14

“I was excited to see three different kinds of financial organizations in one day and I loved the feeling of holding a big, big gold bar in my hands. And this would be one of the most memorable trips in my MBA life.” Carrie Zhou, Smeal MBA Class of ‘14

The MBA Finance Association saw the closing bell at NASDAQ.

"I got to hold a $500,000 gold bar at the Fed, talk with market makers on the trading floor of the NYSE, and see the closing bell at the NASDAQ, but the most fun part was spending 18 hours with Alpha Nayete [2013-2014 Finance Association President]. That guy is crazy and so fun!" Andrew Svoboda, Smeal MBA Class of ‘15

“Being on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange was a fascinating experience. I'm also glad that we had to chance to speak with the President of BNY Mellon and feel very fortunate that she offered her time and gave us a chance to speak with her. Overall, it was a very exciting trip.” David Eilenberger, Smeal MBA Class of ‘15

The MBA Finance Association speaking directly to the President of the Bank of New York Mellon.

"My favorite part of the day on Wall Street was talking to Karen Peetz, President of BNY Mellon and Penn State alumnus. She spoke candidly about the banking industry: how it works, how it has changed and how it can utilize technology to face its most pressing challenges. In addition, our discussion with her on leadership and the skills that we should focus on was eye-opening. Karen emphasized how it takes a lot more than a high IQ to be influential in today's business environment. It's opportunities like these that make the MBA program both unique and invaluable." Matt Herbert, Smeal MBA Class of ‘15