Thomas Sigle

The combination of research and taking a research course simultaneously helped me see a great return on my research experience. I had worked on my research project for a semester before starting the undergraduate research course. I found that taking the course while doing the research allowed me to appreciate the work I was doing more and gave me new models in which to analyze what I was doing. I had a great experience in the undergraduate research seminar.

This research experience has been very beneficial to the development of my professional skills. I want to find a job in finance or economics. Both fields are very quantitative and require the ability to work with large data sets. In this research, I created a large, original data set. The course itself has also helped with my interviews. I interviewed for a credit analyst position at a local Chicago bank. During the interview, I was asked about leadership style. I referenced the difference between a transformative leader and a transactional leader. The study of the class gave me great talking points to answer questions. I actually was offered the position and will be starting with the firm next week.

Along with professional development, this research experience has also strengthened my graduate school applications. I truly enjoy the educational experience. Education can open many doors and awards the student with a new understanding of the world around them. It is a profound experience. My number one goal was to get acceptance to attend Vanderbilt University’s Master of Science in Finance program. I have worked diligently in many areas in order to strengthen my application. One such area was this research opportunity. During my interview, I was able to talk about the research I have done. The director of the program appreciated the work I had done, and I believe that this experience influenced their decision to offer me admittance and a scholarship. I know that I will be able to take the experience that I had doing research at Loyola and expand on it at Vanderbilt. Dr. Green was also a great resource to have as I wrote my essays for the application. He was more than willing to review them with me and was very helpful in the recommendations he made.

I have enjoyed this project and the undergraduate research course. Taking the course while doing the research helped me gain a better understanding of the work that I was doing. I learned many things about different research strategies, leadership theory, and ethics. Though my research at Loyola is finished, I am certain that the experience will continue to show returns as I enter graduate school and eventually the professional job market.