Felix Bening ’22
Post-MBA position: Investment Banking Division, J. P. Morgan
My previous role focused largely on auditing local implications of major global M&A and leveraged buyout deals, including reviewing meeting minutes, verifying transactions, and reporting financial statements. But I wanted to move to a more strategic role. I wanted to be at the table where these deals are taking place. I’m pursuing an MBA to help with my career pivot.
I chose Yale SOM because even though I knew I wanted to be in finance, I also wanted a well-rounded business education. The core curriculum, which is modeled around organizational perspectives, really stood out. My thinking had been skewed toward the tactical and one-dimensional, but the core has introduced me to a significant level of strategic thinking.
For me, community is really important. I didn’t get to travel to the U.S. from Ghana until my second semester in the MBA program, partly due to pandemic travel restrictions. On top of that, my wife and I had a baby girl during my first semester—I had a lot going on. Enter my learning team: They were so understanding and supportive of my schedule, helping me balance hospital visits with recruiting prep, coffee chats, and time zone differences. It was so touching when team members sent baby gifts and Yale swag to my family even before they met me in person.
I’m co-chair and budget officer of the Africa Business & Society club and also co-leader and budget officer of Christian Fellowship. Through these clubs, I’ve had the opportunity to practice my leadership skills. I’ve learned a lot about other African countries and built a network of people passionate about making a difference in Africa. I’ve also had an opportunity to strengthen my faith. One Christian Fellowship memory that stands out is the Journey of Generosity Retreat I attended with other members. The retreat, which was organized by the nonprofit Generous Giving, helped us all connect and think about ways to give back to society and be more generous with our resources and our lives.
I started working on my résumé with coaches in the Career Development Office (CDO) even before classes began. I took part in mock-coaching sessions and booked multiple appointments to check in and request feedback from coaches. The second-year students in the Finance Club and the Private Equity & Venture Capital Club were also very helpful with my technical prep for job interviews. Then when I received a couple of offers, the CDO provided guidance and perspective in helping me think about my long-term career goals. I chose the “right” offer because it aligned with my long-term vision and offered a steep learning curve that will pay off in years to come.
Interviewed on November 30, 2021