Mihaylo finance alumna Irina Arora ’14 is currently a risk underwriting analyst and portfolio manager at Capital One Healthcare Finance. She discusses her career, opportunities in finance related to health care, the impact of the Applied Securities Analysis Program (ASAP) on her success, and steps you can take to succeed in your career.
Less than three years after earning her undergraduate finance degree, Irina Arora ’14 already has a successful professional career. After working as an equity derivatives analyst and controller at Goldman Sachs for more than one year, Arora landed her current position as healthcare cash flow underwriter and portfolio manager for Capital One Bank in Washington, D.C.
Following is a discussion with her about her personal journey and lessons that business students can apply to live their purpose.
What are the responsibilities of your current role at Capital One Bank?
My role as a senior underwriting analyst in the risk team is to conduct due diligence for our clients looking to buy companies in health-care industry sectors, such as hospitals, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and senior housing.
A great deal of my position entails running cash flow models, doing industry research and performing financial analyses. I work closely with the deal team to ensure the credit worthiness, operations and finances of the customer in accordance with underwriting guidelines. As a portfolio manager, I monitor the performance of all the deals I have underwritten in the past to ensure they are in compliance with the credit agreement. I also maintain documentation for structured lending transactions.
Capital One Healthcare Finance is one of the most active capital providers in the U.S. health care market, deploying about $9 billion in new commitments to customers through more than 200 transactions in 2013, the last year in which statistics were available. That amounts to more than $65 billion in financing over the past 10 years. The Healthcare Financial Services business (HFS) was the top lead arranger by volume and number of transactions completed for all financings under $500 million in U.S. health care leveraged finance.
We often hear that the health-care industry is growing rapidly, thanks to an aging population and technological advances. What are some of the opportunities for business students in the financial end of the health-care revolution? How can students get started?
Health-care spending is a $3.2 trillion industry in the U.S., a figure that is expected to increase in the future. The growing field will lead directly to the creation of thousands of jobs over the coming years and jobs in the financial aspect of health care will be in high demand in the future. Positions in health-care cash flow, real estate, asset-backed underwriting, health-care accounting, industry research and forecasting, consulting, budgeting, and controlling are just some of these opportunities.
As with finance, the health-care industry has many niches. Choosing where you want to focus and acquiring knowledge of that sector through additional training will enhance your résumé.
My advice to anyone majoring in finance or considering studies in this major is to network with chartered financial analysts (CFAs) and other professionals in the industry. Add another concentration or minor to your finance degree. It will make you so much more valuable. You will have the knowledge of finance and a complementary skill set which will set you apart from other people.
You were a part of Mihaylo’s ASAP program. How did this experience help you in your career?
Saying that my ASAP experience has assisted me in the real world would be an understatement. The program has carried me on its shoulders from helping me secure a job at Goldman Sachs to launching me in the underwriting business. My ASAP background gave me an edge during job interviews that separated me from the rest of the candidates. One highlight of the program was the trip to New York City. We paid our own way to go on a student conference and tour of the New York Stock Exchange to get a behind-the-scenes look at the financial industry.
When I started the ASAP course, I worked with Mihaylo Finance Lecturer, Managing Director of ASAP and Equity Director Michael Milligan to draft two stock reports, which I handed out in my first interviews at Goldman Sachs and Capital One. Those reports not only left a lasting impression on my employers but also showed them the level of understanding I gained from this program.
ASAP also taught me how to run cash flow models on stocks that we would buy. The real-world situations in the program prepared me for the job I am in today. Reading textbooks can help students get good grades, but participating in practical scenarios, as in the ASAP program, provides you with an experience to excel that will stick with you for a lifetime.
For more information
For more on the ASAP program, contact Milligan at email@example.com or Finance Lecturer and Director of Bond ASAP Marcia Clark at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more on the college’s finance program, visit the Department of Finance at SGMH 5113 or call 657-278-2217.