Charlotte, North Carolina — February 2012
Known as “the Queen City,” Charlotte is the 17th largest city in the United States and the second largest banking capital in the United States, after New York. It is home to Bank of America, the second largest financial institution in the country based on assets, as well as Wells Fargo–which purchased the Charlotte-based banking jugernaut Wachovia in 2008 and made Charlotte its East Coast headquarters.
Needless to say, in addition to loads of Southern charm, Charlotte boasts a number of opportunities in banking. Wells Fargo Secruities — the investment banking arm of Wells Fargo — is housed in the sprawling, Wells Fargo Plaza, which occupies three major buildings in “Uptown,” as Charlotteans insist on calling their downtown area (very confusing!).
The home of the Nascar Hall of Fame, Charlotte also boasts both an NFL (Panthers) team and an NBA team (Bobcats).
All of the folks I met with who work for Bank of America seem to be perpetually afraid for their jobs, given all the turmoil in the European economy and the overall state of the financial business in America these last few years. The bank, nonetheless, is hiring–particularly for experienced-hire positions in the Charlotte office.
Wells Fargo Securities assured me they would post their summer and full-time investment banking analysts rolls with us in the fall — both for investment banking and sales & trading. So stay tuned for that. In the meantime, do a little research on Charlotte. It really is an energetic, lovely city with everything a young professional could ask for in a place to live and begin your career.
I even had an opportunity to stop by a local joint featured on my favorite Food Network program, “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.” It most certainly falls in the “Dive” category, although technically, it is a drive-in. B-B-Q King is its name, and sloppy delicious and not-so-nutricious Carolina bar-b-que is its game. I ordered the chicken I had seen Guy Fieri tear into with such delight on the show. An order of fried chicken–perfectly fried, tender, crispy and juicy, fried to perfection and THEN, dunked into a vat of spicy, vinegary Carolina bar-b-que sauce. Although I recommend it highly, I would specify trying it on your way OUT of town, rather than on your way to an interview! It is conveniently located very near the airport, so you can make it your last stop before taking off. Warning: You will be covered from finger tips to elbows in juicy, saucy goodness! As the very friendly car-hop informed me, there is a nice, clean restroom on site for hand washing after the carnage. But the tasty aroma lingers for hours no matter how hard you scrub.
We have several alumni in the mentor network on Freeman Link whom you can access for further assistance in investigating banking careers in Charlotte.