Recently, ICF Advisory Board Member Valentina Antill ‘94 MBA, was the keynote speaker at the 2019 MAM, Global Business & Society, and Systemic Risk orientation. Valentina is currently Managing Director, Global Markets at Citigroup Inc. and a proud SOM alumna. She heads Citigroup’s strategic risk and derivative solutions for the Americas and her expertise lies in designing and executing structured funding and risk management solutions.
During Valentina’s speech, she mentioned the same statement several times: “Yale SOM had the most profound impact on my life.”
Valentina went on to explain how her lack of financial and economic skills were completely transformed while at Yale SOM. Identifying right away that her quantitative skills were not her strong suit, Valentina attributed some of her success to her perseverance and initiative to take the hardest quantitative classes while at Yale SOM in order to further develop and hone those skills. Interestingly enough, she noted that her quantitative skills would actually play an important role in her future career. Valentina also accredited the patient TA’s for helping her better understand the material in those tough classes as well as some of the world-renowned faculty that have made an everlasting impact on her life including Professors Roger Ibbotson and Jonathan Ingersoll II.
Yale SOM prides itself on being a global business school and that’s exactly what Valentina finds so attractive. By being such a diverse school, Valentina felt she had no choice but to experiment and go outside of her comfort zone to listen and learn from classmates from various countries and cultures. A large part of today’s work requires employees to work on global virtual teams, working across time zones with people of various backgrounds. Finding ways to work harmonously towards the same common goal is crucial.
To close the talk, Valentina cautioned that although the time that the students will actually spend at Yale SOM will be short, they need to take advantage of it. Studying hard and making education their priority right now will pay off tremendously in the long run. She closed her talk by saying, “Look at the long-term discounted cash flows,” or in other words, stay focused and look at the bigger picture toward your future career and success.