It’s a common refrain heard from many McIntire graduates this spring: Most of their most cherished memories at UVA can be attributed to the friendships they’ve made at the Commerce School.
Add Lauren Larizza to that list of students.
The Darien, CT, product says that across her studies at McIntire, the connections she formed with those she learned with while tackling group projects—such as those she and her fellow Block 3 peers worked through during the Integrated Core—were crucial to her experience in the program. Larizza sees it having an impact that will resonate long after the chapter of her life on Grounds comes to a close.
“These relationships will be important post-grad, with the opportunity to have friends potentially in your career field, in a new major city with you, or even somewhere abroad from McIntire’s exchange program,” she says.
As a volunteer with Madison House as part of its Creating Assets, Savings & Hope (CASH) program, as well as serving as the prior President of the Community Honor Fund, a micro-lending institution that provides affordable loans to low-income individuals in Charlottesville, Larizza has forged other significant relationships. Lending her developing expertise to those in need has generated many positive effects for others while she prepared for her upcoming professional role. She’ll be working as an Analyst with global advisory investment bank Rothschild & Co., eventually returning to their New York office after having interned in their rotational program.
She notes that one lesson that has helped her to navigate the start of her career comes from the approach the Commerce School instills in its students; it’s been integral to most of the coursework she completed in her Finance and Management concentrations and Global Commerce Track. “McIntire does a great job of encouraging students to ask questions and think critically when reading articles and reviewing data samples. I believe that this skill will enable us to understand what is truly important and make decisions in the future,” she says.
We asked Larizza what led her to Rouss & Robertson Halls, what she learned there, and where it will be taking her.
What led you to apply to McIntire? What about the program appealed to you?
I applied to McIntire because I liked the sense of community that the School holds through its group-based discussion style, the various group projects through the Integrated Core and other classes, as well as the approachability of my professors and classmates. I also appreciated the ICE curriculum to get a comprehensive view on business through the semesterlong projects and different subject areas. Finally, I was also interested in studying classes in its Finance and Management concentrations, but I appreciated the opportunity to take classes through the global lens of the Global Commerce Track.
What Comm School professor has made the greatest impact on you and why?
I really enjoyed taking Global Commerce with Professor Peter Maillet last semester. Throughout the course, we were encouraged to follow current events across the world, which is a skill I have kept with me and will be incredibly useful in starting my career. In addition, for many of us in the class, the course brought us to a new level of academic challenge. We worked through trying to understand complex, global events and how they tied to things, such as the financial markets, disruptive technologies, and international policy, through group discussion and analysis.
After you walk the Lawn, what are you looking forward to most?
In June, I’m planning to spend a couple of weeks in Europe, traveling around with friends. I think that it will be exciting to experience new European cities that I didn’t get the chance to travel to due to COVID-19 my third year. I also start my training for Rothschild in London in July with the other analysts in the other office, so that will be a great experience—training among my peers internationally. Finally, I am looking forward to moving to New York City, accompanied by many other UVA and McIntire grads. It will be an exciting opportunity for us to start our careers and form new networks.