GET TO KNOW UBS: Allison Walker

Name: Allison Walker
Grade: Incoming Junior
Major: Economics and Political Science Double Major
Career Interest: Management Consulting

Q - What led you to get involved with UBS?
A - Coming to UCLA, I knew that I wanted to pursue a career in business, but I wasn’t sure which area of business I was most passionate about. When I checked out the Business Showcase organized by the UBS Career Development Committee during fall quarter of my freshman year, I was impressed with the advice and insight offered by the alumni panel and applied to that same committee soon after. While helping to plan the events on the committee, I gained a better understanding of different careers in business, and the process helped me figure out what I wanted to pursue. I learned as much from our events as the students in attendance did.

Q - Any memorable internships or professional experiences?
A - I am actually interning at the same company that I interned at last summer, and it’s been really interesting to come back and see what has changed and what has stayed the same. Most students try to intern at as many companies as they can, which definitely has its perks, but I think it’s also just as rewarding to come back and build on the relationships I developed last year and continue my learning. This time around, I have been entrusted with greater responsibility and more in-depth involvement with my projects.

Q - If you were a company, what would your slogan be?
A - You make your own luck.

Q - What networking tips do you have?
A - Don’t be afraid to reach out to people who work in the profession you may be interested in. I know that it can be intimidating to send an email to someone you’re not familiar with but it never hurts to give it a try! The worst thing that can happen is not getting a reply.

Q - What has been your greatest challenge at UCLA so far?
A - When I was a freshman, I was pretty overwhelmed at the number of clubs and organizations on campus—I had no idea what to join. I think that going to a large university like UCLA is great because there are so many opportunities available to students, but it's also easy to feel lost. I found my place after talking to a lot of different people and asking what they were involved in and what they recommended, but it definitely took a while.  My advice to anybody dealing with these feelings is to keep persevering! It will work out. I find it helpful to remember that college is a time of growth and that discomfort and uncertainty are part of the process.

Q - Who has impressed you most with what they’ve accomplished and why?
A - Sheryl Sandberg! She is the current COO of Facebook—an impressive accomplishment—and an inspiration to many women in business because of the challenges she has overcome to get to where she is now. Her book Lean In explores this in greater detail and offers some valuable advice and insight into what it's like succeeding against the odds.

Q - If you could master one skill you don’t have right now, what would it be?
A - Probably a programming language.  I’m actually taking an Intro to Python class this summer, so I’m working on it!

Q - What are you doing this summer professionally or for fun?
A - I went to Spain for a week and a half this summer with my family! It was fun to be able to use the Spanish skills I learned back in my AP Spanish days. I was a little rusty, but I started to get the hang of it again by the end of the trip. I love traveling and being able to experience different countries and cultures, especially in the way it offers a new perspective and a broader understanding of the world at large.