Grant Dunham

Class Year

’19

Hometown

Inverness, Illinois

Major(s)

Finance

Minor(s)

Economics

As a very involved finance major at Carthage and former Marine, Grant Dunham seeks to merge his life in the military with his finance degree to make a successful impact for himself and his country. Having participated in multiple finance and accounting challenges through the department, Grant has developed his skills and utilized them in an impressive internship with The ASO Project, LLC and throughout the Finance and Investment Club at Carthage.

Taking advantage of Carthage’s small class sizes, Grant has also made lasting connections with other students in his major, even co-founding the Armed Forces of Carthage (AFOC) Club with fellow Marine Ryan Casey.

Grant encourages new students at Carthage to “take on challenges, find opportunities, and learn on your own.”

“I was first drawn to Carthage by the overall atmosphere of its campus and curriculum. Having a smaller student body allows students to develop and maintain meaningful relationships with their classmates and professors. These types of networking skills are vital to anyone that wishes to excel in their career, no matter the field.”

Grant Dunham, ’19

Career goal

“There are many different directions someone with a finance degree may take. I recently got out of the United States Marine Corps after serving about 4 years and I want to find something that provided a constant challenge, like I had in the Marines. My goal would be to work in investment banking or proprietary trading.”

How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?

“Professor Catherine Lau has had a huge impact on me during my time at Carthage. Her classes offer real industry experience along with practical application, which allows her students to understand the inner workings of the lesson. She also consistently has new projects, activities, internships or ideas for accounting and finance majors to take advantage of.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class at Carthage was International Finance. In this course, students have the opportunity to apply what they learn to research and work they do. Whether it be writing a research paper on a global financial issue, presenting to classmates on certain learning objectives, or researching foreign exchange arbitrage opportunities you will take away a lot of knowledge from this class.”

Campus involvement

“During my first semester at Carthage I co-founded the club Armed Forces of Carthage (AFOC) with Ryan Casey. This club is aimed at supporting the veteran community at Carthage as well as providing information to students interested in a career with the United States Armed Forces. I am also involved with the Finance and Investment Club here at Carthage, this club focuses on following markets, sharing ideas and trading different investment vehicles.”

Toughest class

“It was Financial Management. This class introduces students to a wide range of tools used in the analysis of different financial assets. At first it can be seen as overbearing from the amount of material covered, but going to class and studying keeps everyone on track to conquer the course.”

Internships or on-campus employment

“I participated in an internship with The ASO Project, LLC during my second semester junior year. The ASO Project is an app store optimization company based out of Naperville, IL. They focus on enhancing their client’s search visibility and conversion rates in the mobile app stores. I was prepared for this internship because of the analytical skills I learned while in the finance program at Carthage.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“There is no shortage of opportunities for students at Carthage, you really get out what you put in. Personally, I have participated in a number of group research projects, presentations and competitions outside of the standard finance courses. These include: The Federal Reserve Challenge, CFA Challenge and the Wedbush Research project and presentation.”

Scholarships

“I received the W. Carl and Esther Carlson Spielman Scholarship from the Accounting and Finance Department at the conclusion of my junior year. I was absolutely honored to be awarded this scholarship. It really showed me that hard work will pay off in the long run and to always stay focused.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“My favorite memory at Carthage has been participating in the CFA Institute Challenge. During this competition a team of approximately 4 students work together to analyze a certain company’s stock and give an investment recommendation whether to buy, sell or hold. A number of school across Wisconsin participate and all come together at the end to present their studies to see who has the best research, analysis and valuation. Our team came in a second place for the Madison Wisconsin Regional competition.”

Favorite spot on campus

“The Clausen Center for World Business is my favorite spot to be on campus. Most of the accounting and finance majors can be found here, since that is where the majority of the classes are held for those majors. This environment creates a forum where students with like interest can share ideas, strategies, and even the occasional business venture. I can also always find a room to study in whether that be alone or with a group.”

Biggest surprise so far

“My biggest surprise has been the amount of major specific activities that Carthage offers. In the Accounting and Finance Department there are numerous opportunities, projects, presentations and internships for students to take advantage of.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“When I was 8-years-old I wanted to be a Marine. That was my only ambition at the time but I believe that 8-year-old Grant would be happy not only because I completed my goal of becoming a Marine but also because I am pursuing and working towards something I love.”

Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?

“If you enjoy a face paced, competitive, challenging environment, then finance could be a great fit. Finance provides a consistent challenge to those who wish to study it. Markets move, policy changes, businesses evolve and you need to research, analyze and study everything you can.”

“Make sure you love finance, anyone who takes on the finance major but does not possess the love for finance will have an extremely hard time moving through the curriculum. You will need to study, study, and study more. Then when you think you’re done studying, research more. Also, you get out what you put into your education, take on challenges, find opportunities and learn on your own.”

Why Carthage?

“I was first drawn to Carthage by the overall atmosphere of its campus and curriculum. Having a smaller student body allows students to develop and maintain meaningful relationships with their classmates and professors. These types of networking skills are vital to anyone that wishes to excel in their career, no matter the field.”