Immersion Learning

A Closer Look at Johnson’s Week on Wall Street

by Stephen Andrew Segall, MBA '14 (2/12/13)
Stephen Andrew Segall, MBA '14

One of the many reasons I decided to attend Johnson was the opportunity to participate in the Investment Banking Immersion, which focuses on developing the skills necessary to become a successful investment banking associate. Part of the training comes in the form of traditional classroom learning including core finance, accounting, and valuation classes. However, the curriculum really comes alive when we begin the Immersion.  The collection of classes and hands-on learning gives us real world experience building financial models, analyzing transactions, and preparing and delivering presentations. The Immersion kicks off at the start of the second semester with Week on Wall Street.

Week on Wall Street is designed to gives us the opportunity to analyze recent transactions and then discuss them with the bankers who actually worked on the deal. Over winter break, we worked on teams to analyze specific transactions by reviewing proxy statements, forecasting revenue projections, and analyzing deal structures. We worked painstakingly to ensure we understood the minute details of the transaction because we would soon be sitting in front of the bankers who had executed the deal earlier that year. But before we put our banking knowledge to the test, we wanted to first thank all of the alumni who had helped us throughout the recruiting process and show Johnson’s support for our Wall Street alumni.

We started off the week in New York City by thanking all of the alumni who had spent countless hours working with us throughout the interviewing and recruiting process by throwing a happy hour in their honor. We invited alumni across all the banks to come together to celebrate with us and reconnect with each other. We had a wonderful turnout, and our alumni were very receptive and happy to see such a strong Johnson presence on the Street.

Following the alumni happy hour, the real work started as we visited seven top-tier investment bank. Over the course of two days, we reviewed seven transactions including mergers, acquisitions, IPO’s, LBO’s, and a SPAC transaction across the energy, consumer, financial, telecom, technology, and healthcare industries.

During our time at each bank, we had the opportunity to listen to the bankers’ description and view of the deal, learn from their perspective on how the deal came together, and ask many technical questions. It was an incredible opportunity to hear what actually happened over the months that it took to execute a deal. During each of the sessions, we spoke with bankers from all levels of the organization, from associates to managing directors, each of whom added his or her unique perspective to the discussion. At one bank, we were fortunate to speak with one of the sponsors who participated on the deal via videoconference, which added additional insight into the transaction.

The opportunity to interact with the bankers and understand what day-to-day life is like when preparing for and working on a live deal provides the ultimate learning experience. It also helped connect what we have been learning in the classroom to what we will be doing when we get to our desks during our internships this summer.