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Taking a Deeper Dive into Life as a Banker: LBO Modeling Course

by Cecilia He, MBA '14 (2/27/13)
Cecilia He, MBA '14

Many prospective Johnson students have asked me this question: what has exceeded your expectations at Johnson? My answer is the Investment Banking Immersion, which creates a learning environment that reaches beyond cases and coursework and simulates a real-world investment banking environment in the classroom.

Without a banking background, I have appreciated those opportunities provided by Johnson, which largely differentiate me from candidates from other schools. Under the direction of Drew Pascarella, a former Director in Citi’s Technology Investment Banking Group, this Program pushes us to learn like bankers, think like bankers, and act like bankers.

A recent workshop we took centered on LBO modeling and advanced financial statement modeling, which is designed to prepare us for an LBO assignment. This training is provided by a global financial training firm providing investment banking self-study programs and e-learning finance training. I found this program extremely relevant for my investment banking career. It provides a solid platform for financial modeling and makes me feel much more confident with excel and financial / accounting concepts.

Through this workshop,  I have been able to learn what makes a good LBO candidate, what the most important output is in LBO models, how to evaluate LBO decisions, and what role the financial sponsors and investment bankers play during the whole process. Additionally, I have a more thorough understanding about current LBO trends as well as the dynamics of a LBO transaction. I even got questions regarding LBO models in an interview I had after this assignment, and the interviewers were surprised about my knowledge in this area, as I don’t have any prior banking experience.

For all these reasons and more I tell prospective Johnson students that the Investment Banking Immersion and Drew Pascarella have further maximized the ROI of my MBA study.