Hi! My name is Nick Burko, and I intern with Leumi’s Credit Team and International & Tech Banking Group within the Commercial Banking division. Due to my keen interest in commercial real estate, I have also spent some time going on site visits to properties in New York City with Chris Polito, Chief Regional Credit Officer for the Real Estate Group. I am a native New Yorker and a rising senior at Syracuse University, majoring in Finance and Accounting, with a minor in Economics. At Syracuse, I am involved with the Orange Value Fund and my fraternity, Pi Kappa Alpha.
Below is a snapshot of a day in my life:
6:45AM – 7:30AM: My alarm goes off. I jump out of bed and brush my teeth. I start my day with an egg white omelet breakfast while reading The Wall Street Journal.
7:30AM – 8:30AM: After a shower, I get dressed and leave my apartment to walk to 579 Fifth Ave.
8:30AM – 8:45AM: Upon arriving at the office, I settle myself in for the day by making a cup of tea. On my way to the kitchen, I pass a sign displaying our company values. This is part of Leumi’s ‘PACE with Integrity’ campaign, which promotes the company values of Passion, Accountability, Care, Excellence and Integrity. It is a great reminder for everyone in the office of what we stand for as an organization and prompts us to think about how we can incorporate those values into our professional and personal lives.
8:45AM – 9:00AM: Back at my desk, I check my email. My mentor, Benny Kosman, Senior Credit Officer in International and Technology Banking, has requested a report on credit maturities that are past due. Then I receive an Outlook reminder that I have a commercial real estate site visit with Chris Polito and Jasmyn Yuzary, an intern on the finance team.
9:00AM – 11:00AM: Chris, Jasmyn and I hop on the subway to visit a property in lower Manhattan. I take a few pictures of the location. Chris reports that construction is on schedule and coming along nicely. I enjoy site visits because they are good opportunities to learn how properties in different areas are utilized based on each neighborhood’s needs and history.
Left to right: Me, Chris and Jasmyn
11:00AM – 12:30PM: I go straight from the site visit to the Manny Cantor Center, a community center on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Leumi is volunteering at the center today. John McGann, our Chief Administrative Officer, has organized this event to assist with senior lunch service as part of our CSR efforts. We served more than 200 adults!
12:30PM – 1:15PM: Today is our weekly intern “Lunch and Learn.” Once a week, interns gather to hear a guest speaker give a presentation on his or her business unit at the Bank. I look forward to the lunch each week because it gives us exposure to other areas of the Bank that we would not necessarily learn about in our day-to-day roles. Today, my manager Paul Letourneau, National Head of Credit, and I were asked to speak about credit at Bank Leumi. It was a great experience to present with Paul and share a little about what I do with all my peers!
1:15PM – 1:30PM: I check my email and see a message from Include@Leumi, our company-wide diversity initiative. Upcoming events include a Women’s Leadership Workshop and festivities celebrating Latin Heritage Month in September. These events happen frequently and are my favorite part about Leumi’s company culture.
1:30PM – 2:30PM: It is time for Credit Committee, where the Bank reviews specific loan requests. I prepare an expression of interest for a loan that includes highlights from financial statements, information about the loaning company and loan structure. It is very exciting to be part of the process to help determine which loans will be approved.
2:30PM – 3:00PM: I work on reports for maturities, principal and interest payments that are past due. These reports used to take over an hour, but I created a macro in Excel that completes them in a flash (30 seconds, to be precise). I guess that Excel certification course I took is really paying off!
3:00PM – 3:30PM: For the International & Tech Group, I input financial data into Moody’s RiskAnalyst. Using Moody’s for financial calculations is a skill I learned during the internship and it makes analysis faster. After the calculations are complete, I update the office memos for afternoon meetings.
3:30PM – 4:00PM: Early afternoons are great for getting acquainted with other departments. Today I meet with Debra Bar, Head of Marketing, to discuss Leumi’s marketing efforts, including the rebrand, advertising, our PR efforts with our economist and senior executives, and social media. I enjoy having these discussions so that I can gain a better understanding of the different departments of the Bank.
4:00PM – 5:00PM: I attend a meeting for the Leumi Summer Internship Project. All of the interns work on a summer-long, capstone project related to commercial banking, private banking or IT. My team’s project is exploring the cost and benefits of asset-based lending for the Commercial Bank.
5:00PM – 7:00PM: It is the eighth week of Leumi Olympics, our Bank-wide cross-functional team competition. Tonight, the teams are competing in trivia. Kate Etinger, Chief of Human Resources, is the captain of my team, the Leumi-Toons (get it?). Our team is comprised of all the interns, which is great because it allows us to get to bond as a group!
7:15PM – 10:30PM: After trivia, Paul and I go to the Mets game at Citi Field. Since Paul and I are both baseball enthusiasts, this is a wonderful opportunity to have a fun experience together outside of the office. It is great to get to know Paul on a personal level and to share in our passion of baseball. I could not be happier to have a manager like Paul.
This was one exciting day in my internship experience, but the summer as a whole has taught me so much. I appreciate the opportunity I’ve had to spend time at a company with such strong values and to have grown from such a wealth of experiences at Leumi.