Joshua Lacoste – Ernst & Young: Structured Finance Internship

This summer, I had the privilege of interning for Ernst & Young (EY) LLP in the company’s Structured Finance Advisory Services division. Based in Hoboken, NJ, I worked at EY’s newly built Hudson River Waterfront Corporate Center in addition to working at the company’s US headquarters in Times Square, New York. Upon completion of the internship, I was offered a full-time position to work in the Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities (CMBS) sub-unit of EY’s Structured Finance practice.

I was extremely thankful for the award funds from the NTC Grant throughout the internship. I lived at an NYU apartment in East Village (Manhattan), where rent is astronomically expensive. This grant made the cost of living much more manageable than it would have been. I truly felt I was able to get the most out of my experience at EY and time in New York rather than being preoccupied with my rent situation. Without this grant, I would likely have been stressed about whether the money I made during the internship would even offset the cost of living in New York.

Throughout my internship, I was able to learn technical and soft skills in the office. I received vigorous trainings in legal due diligence, third party due diligence, and amortization. I also was staffed on live commercial real estate deals in which I accumulated knowledge about the commercial real estate industry and about the clients (mostly large investment banks). Additionally, I earned two EY “badges,” which require 20 hours of self-scheduled learning: one in blockchain and one in digital technologies. Furthermore, I had an internship presentation in which I worked on a team of four people to propose an idea for automating one of the processes in our everyday work at EY. It went over so well that our idea was implemented before the internship was over!

The highlight of the internship was EY’s International Intern Leadership Conference at Disney World in Orlando, FL. We heard from various speakers, including EY’s Global Chairman and CEO in addition to the CFO of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors. We also participated in a number of team-building activities and workshops that I felt put an exclamation point on the internship experience.

The internship has undoubtedly benefited my academic/Tulane experience. For one, being in the world of finance for a few months allowed me to learn a great deal about how the concepts I learned in the classroom could apply to a real-world setting. Conversely, the concepts I learned at EY are ones I feel I can now apply to my work in the classroom this upcoming school year. As for my Tulane experience, I significantly expanded my network of Tulane connections, not only at EY and in Structured Finance, but throughout the New York Metro Area. I was able to connect with individuals I never would have met had I not accepted this internship offer and received this grant.

This internship experience was truly amazing. I grew and developed professionally and personally, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Without the NTC grant, I seriously am not sure if I would have been able to pursue this opportunity. As someone who is from the New Orleans Area and attends school not far from home, the grant made my family and me much more comfortable in making the decision to relocate to New York for a few months. For that, I am forever grateful.

Written by Joshua Lacoste, Ching Grant recipient, 2018-2019