Amber Keeseman ’11 Builds on Individualized Major with Investment Company

Lebanon Valley College students immerse themselves in four years of rigorous study of their specific interest, but often the internship experience solidifies and synthesizes the skills learned in the classroom. Amber Keeseman ’11, of Shippensburg, Pa., was able to put her many skills to work during her summer internship with Five Mile Capital Partners. The company, located in Stamford, Conn. is an alternative investment and asset management firm.

From early June to the end of July, Keeseman was an analyst for commercial real estate deals. “I spent time researching and analyzing characteristics of properties and helping to create recommendations about whether deals should be accepted or not,” she said. Additionally, she performed portfolio maintenance on deals the company had already started before she arrived.

Keeseman believes the internship helped compile the skills developed in the classroom, and required her to use them in a real-world environment. Keeseman began her career at LVC as an actuarial science major, but after working with Dr. Brian Hearsey, chair and professor of mathematical sciences, she developed a plan to individualize the mathematics of finance major to include business, accounting, and economics courses.

While her specialized major gave her a good basis of knowledge, her internship helped to build off of the various skills she developed in the classroom. “Learning finance from a textbook is about as difficult as learning medicine from a book. Unless you see the financial tools being used, it is hard to understand why they exist. Through my internship with Five Mile Capital Partners, I was immersed in the terminology connected to finance.”

Not only was the internship a good way for Keeseman to develop skills, but it also gave her the chance to work on one of the most famous streets in the country. Every once in a while, she was asked to take the two hour commute to New York City to work at the company’s office on 5th Avenue.

“I think anyone that is interested in a career in finance has dreams about working for a high profile company in a nice NYC office,” she said. “Traveling into the city alone was also a confidence builder, because I had to find my way to the office and figure out the correct train to take.”

Now that she is looking for a job, Keeseman says she is grateful for her time with Five Mile Capital Partners. “The job market for finance is extremely competitive right now, so great experience is a must. I hope to find a job in finance after graduation, and my summer experience really helps my résumé. Plus, I was able to network with some very well connected individuals, which will help me as I begin a career.”