Exploring Private Equity

Tiana Wang, WH ’26, Houston, TX

This summer, I had the pleasure of interning at a private equity firm based in the United States and China. Serving as my first “official” introduction to private equity, I gained a lot of insight into what the day-to-day of such a career would be like, as well as learned about the work that goes into sourcing, negotiating, and completing a deal. The global aspect of the firm also allowed me to experience what it was like to communicate with and manage international clients, as well as the fundamental differences between domestic and international deals.

As a younger analyst, I was tasked mostly with sourcing potential investments, and much of my time was spent reaching out to companies independently and conducting due diligence for those opportunities. From understanding business models to following industry trends, this kind of experience gave me a big-picture overview of various markets and allowed me to develop my communication and analysis skills. Conversations with management and founders of multiple companies in diverse industries gave me a ton of insight into in inner workings of those fields. For example, one specific project that I was involved in was focused on the food and beverage industry—a field that I had absolutely no experience in whatsoever. This kind of exposure to new and unfamiliar markets was a really valuable experience for me and served as a great introduction to future career possibilities.

In addition to sourcing, I also worked on building financial models as needed. There was a bit of a learning curve when it came to these tasks, but guidance from managers and supervisors was super helpful and allowed me to develop new skills while improving on my modeling capabilities. Beyond the responsibilities that I was tasked with, I really enjoyed the people that I was able to work alongside at the firm. Fellow interns were supportive and always willing to lend a helping hand, and other higher-ups of the company were constantly ready to offer that same kind of assistance—all I had to do was ask. The global reach of the firm also extended to its employees, as I was able to work with a super diverse team from all over the world. It was super fulfilling to be surrounded by people who were passionate about the same work as me, and who were there to challenge me and guide me.

Overall, this experience was absolutely invaluable to me, as someone who is interested in pursuing private equity or an adjacent career in the future. From developing various skills that are critical for an analyst, to simply getting to see first-hand what the process of completing a deal and working for such a firm is like, I am very grateful for the Career Services Summer Funding for allowing me to take on this opportunity this summer.

This is part of a series of posts by recipients of the 2023 Career Services Summer Funding Grant. We’ve asked funding recipients to reflect on their summer experiences and talk about the industries in which they spent their summer. You can read the entire series here.

By Career Services
Career Services