Leveraging the language of business

by Alyana Versolatto

Image of Nitish SharmaAs a Mathematics/Chartered Professional Accountancy student, Nitish Sharma (BMath '14) was part of the second team that led the development of the hEDGE Financial Services Conference. Hosted annually in the heart of Toronto's financial district, hEDGE offers University of Waterloo students a comprehensive look into both sell-side and buy-side finance through six pillars of capital markets: asset management, equity and debt research, investment banking, private equity, sales and trading, and venture capital. The brainchild of School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) students, the conference’s goal is to showcase the impressive finance talent that is present at SAF and to inform students about recruitment and networking opportunities. What is particularly inspiring about the large and successful conference is that it continues to be completely student-run to this day.

It’s been 10 years since the founding of the conference, and topics covered now include overall trends in the finance industry and the future of work. In that time, Nitish graduated and carved out an impressive career in the world of finance. He is currently an associate vice president at Instar Asset Management Inc., a private equity firm that invests in infrastructure assets across North America.

Nitish had these three pieces of advice for aspiring professionals that are interested in building their leadership experiences and working towards leadership roles: 

  1. Take the opportunity at Waterloo to observe upper-year students and find out what they have accomplished in their careers so far and what makes them effective leaders. 
  2. Take the time to learn from experts and mentors to understand how they have led productive and positive teams.
  3. Take the opportunity to find roles that fit you in a leadership capacity while studying at university. This is the time to experiment, put yourself out there, and seek out opportunities in areas that are compelling and of interest to you. 

The School of Accounting and Finance caught up with Nitish to hear more about the inception of hEDGE and the disruptive changes in the financial services industry.