Zara Vakath ’24: Earning real-world experience at CMC
It was the “perfect celebration.”
That’s how Zara Vakath ’24 describes joining her fellow CMCers to ring the New York Stock Exchange closing bell on Aug. 17 in recognition of more than 75 years of preparing students for thoughtful and productive lives and responsible leadership in business, government, and the professions.
The economics-literature major said she was particularly excited to share the podium with two of her professors, Angela Vossmeyer and Nishant Dass, as well as Jim Floyd, the Chief Investment Officer of Claremont McKenna College’s endowment.
Once she graduates, the CMC senior and Robert Day Scholar will join Citadel, where she recently completed a summer internship as a long/short equities intern, an experience which, she said, made the opportunity to explore the NYSE trading floor during her last week in New York City even more meaningful.
This academic year, Vakath will serve as CEO of the Student Investment Fund at CMC, having joined as a first-year student.
She counts David Ying ’21, Annie Raines ’22, and Audrey Guilloteau ’22 as role models and credits her SIF experience for providing her with “invaluable mentorship from upperclassmen and connection with a community of like-minded students. As a member, I have gained transferable real-world experience by helping manage a portion of CMC’s endowment,” she said.
Vakath’s plans for SIF this year include increasing “SIF’s engagement with the broader community by opening training and networking sessions to the entire student body, collaborating with other student investment funds at the 5Cs and beyond, and providing members with opportunities to learn from alumni.”
She said she chose CMC “for the personalized academic support and tight-knit community, in addition to various other advantages that come with attending a small school.”
This fall, Zara's brother, Zain ’27 joined her at CMC, “after witnessing firsthand how I could leverage the career development resources and robust alumni network,” she said.
And, CMC’s bell-ringing ceremony at the NYSE represents “a perfect example of the unparalleled, personalized opportunities that I am provided with here, which my younger brother and parents were excited to see!”