Accelerate Your Career
With the Asset Management Diversity Accelerator (AMDA)
About the Sponsors
The Asset Management Diversity Accelerator (AMDA) is a 24-month rotational development program for entry-level job seekers interested in asset management. AMDA participants will spend eight months as junior research associates at each of three Chicago-area asset management firms: Allstate Investments, LGIM America, and William Blair Investment Management. By attracting recent university graduates from diverse backgrounds who would otherwise not explore careers in asset management, the AMDA seeks to create a new pipeline of junior talent, increase diversity of background and thought within investment teams, and better our communities. High-performing candidates will have the opportunity to interview for full-time positions with participating firms after the AMDA program completion.
The AMDA is a partnership between Allstate Investments, LGIM America, and William Blair Investment Management. Together, these Chicago-area asset managers combined have almost $350 billion in assets under management.
LGIM America was founded in 2006 with the purpose of helping people achieve their long-term financial goals. We offer a range of strategies to help our institutional clients (corporations, healthcare agencies, nonprofit, education, public plans, and Taft-Hartley) manage their investment objectives, which can range from market-based alpha-oriented strategies to those that are designed to be more liability-centric, derivative overlays, or indexed solutions. Encouraging a diverse and inclusive environment coupled with a solutions-focused culture allows us to increase our breadth of knowledge and the likelihood of improved client outcomes and stronger financial performance. We have teams of experienced, innovative professionals committed to helping plan sponsors meet their pension promises, managing investment exposures efficiently to seek enhanced returns while mitigating risks, and working to generate returns while making a positive societal difference. LGIM America had $216 billion in assets under management as of 3/31/23.
Allstate Investments has decades of experience pursuing strategies in a broad array of asset classes and geographies in both the public and private markets. No matter the investment, we remain steadfast in our commitment to deliver strong investment results for each client. The Allstate Corporation had $63.5 billion in assets under management as of 3/31/23.
1 William Blair International (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore under a Capital Markets Services License to conduct fund management activities.
Stephanie Braming, CFA, Partner,
Global Head of Investment Management,
“The power of teams can’t be overstated. Human capital is our industry’s biggest asset. That’s why we need the best and the brightest to join us. And the best and the brightest span many different backgrounds with many different ways of thinking.”
William Blair Investment Management is a global asset manager based in Chicago with resources in New York, London, Zurich, Sydney, Stockholm, Singapore, and The Hague, and dedicated coverage for Canada. Our investment teams employ disciplined, analytical research processes across a wide range of strategies, including U.S. equity, non-U.S. equity, fixed income, multi-asset, and alternatives. We strive to attract and retain the best people. As we do, we embrace skills and perspectives from around the globe—and welcome new ideas. This helps us deliver the tailored, thoughtful work our clients have known us for. William Blair Investment Management had $61.5 billion in assets under management as of 3/31/23.
John Dugenske, CFA,
President, Investments and Financial Products, Allstate Investments
“Inclusive diversity and equity has long been a core value of Allstate that represents who we are and how we conduct ourselves as employees, leaders, decision-makers, and members of society. Allstate actively supports historically Black colleges and universities and Hispanic-serving institutions to attract talent to our employment and entrepreneur career opportunities, and today’s event is just one example. We are committed to bringing more diverse talent into investment roles at Allstate and more broadly industry-wide.”
Aaron Meder, CFA,
Chief Executive Officer,
“Addressing our industry's biggest challenges while delivering our business for future generations will take new ideas, innovation, phenomenal teamwork, and relentless focus. Success can only be achieved if we’re respectfully and inclusively collaborating, while continually embracing diversity of thought and experience.”
What We're Looking For
We’re searching for intellectually curious individuals interested in being trained in accounting and financial modeling principles and learning more about the world of investing. Numbers should come easily to these individuals as they use their critical thinking skills to evaluate the strength of companies in the credit and equities space. Ideally, those who score well in all subjects thrive in this role. Junior research associates will receive formal training in accounting principles and would be required to receive a satisfactory completion for continuation in the program.
The Asset Management Diversity Accelerator (AMDA) is a 24-month rotational development program for entry-level job seekers interested in asset management. Participants will spend eight months as junior research associates at each of three Chicago-area asset management firms. By attracting recent university graduates who would otherwise not explore careers in asset management—including women and those from racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds—the AMDA seeks to create a new pipeline of junior talent, increase diversity of background and thought within investment teams, and better our communities. High-performing participants will have the opportunity to interview for full-time positions with participating firms after program completion.
This program has been created to give individuals who do not have a finance/accounting/economics or related degree a pathway into the asset management industry. Training and development opportunities will be geared specifically to those graduating with a bachelor’s degree outside these majors.
Junior Research Associate, Rotational
As part of this two-year rotational program, the selected individuals will gain experience from three independent asset management firms. Working within buy-side equity and fixed income research teams, the junior research associates will contribute to the research process to assist portfolio managers in making the best and most informed investment decisions on behalf of their clients.
Bachelor’s degree in any major outside accounting, business, economics, and finance.
Graduation date of December 2022 or May 2023 (intended start date is June 2023).
Interest in the financial markets or investing.
Desire to learn from peers and seek a deep understanding of complex problems.
Strong analytical skills.
Ability to build relationships and collaborate with others.
Ability to digest, simplify, and summarize complex information.
Highly motivated, detail-oriented team player.
What You'll Need
Build knowledge of assigned industry/sector and companies, keep abreast of related market developments and news.
Gather and organize investment research and data.
Collect information on financial performance, competitive industry positioning, quality of company management, etc.
Learn to build financial models and assist in maintaining existing models.
Assist in summarizing research findings for use in industry and company reports and presentations.
Observe meetings with company management, brokers, and investment and research staff.
Ensure all work activities are in compliance with applicable rules, regulations, policies, and procedures.
Additional responsibilities as requested.
What You’ll Do
Please apply with an updated resume through Handshake for consideration. Select candidates will be invited to submit a writing sample.
What You'll Need To Do To Apply
Full-time 24-month rotational development training program across three Chicago asset management firms
8-month rotations at each firm as a Junior Research Associate
Position – Chicago, IL
Increase the number of women and racially and ethnically diverse individuals entering asset management industry. Unique inter-firm rotational program creates opportunity for career acceleration and enhances industry network three-fold.
With the Asset Management Diversity Accelerator (AMDA)
Accelerate Your Career
Extend Offers To AMDA Candidates
Winter 2022/Spring 2023
Increase women and racially and ethnically diverse individuals entering the asset management industry
Establish program as the platform to expand inter-firm partnerships and functional disciplines throughout asset management
Outcome of AMDA Program
Attract 2022 graduates that are high achieving women and/or from racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds who may not be compelled to explore careers in asset management
Recruit atypical or degree-diverse majors (non-accounting, finance, economics) to broaden the diversity of thought within the industry.
Expansive Professional Networks
Accelerate Your Career
Inter-firm Rotational Program
Chicago Based Asset Management Firms
What is Asset Management?
Asset management is the practice of increasing wealth over time through buying, maintaining, and trading investments while at the same time mitigating risk.
As a service, asset management is offered by financial institutions that cater to high net-worth individuals, corporations, government entities, and institutional investors like colleges and pension funds.
It can apply to both tangible and intangible assets.
Asset managers have fiduciary responsibilities and are legally bound to act in good faith on the client’s behalf.
Bachelor’s degree in any major outside accounting, business, economics, and finance
A recent graduate
Interest in the financial markets or investing
Desire to learn from peers and seek a deep understanding of complex problems
Strong analytical skills
Ability to build relationships and collaborate with others
Ability to digest, simplify, and summarize complex information
Highly motivated, detail-oriented team player
What are the attributes that would make a candidate successful in this role?
Clark Atlanta University – Atlanta, GA
Fisk University – Nashville, TN
Florida A&M – Tallahassee, FL
Howard University – Washington, D.C.
Morehouse College – Atlanta, GA
Spelman College – Atlanta, GA
Candidates from other universities, including other HBCUs, may be considered
What colleges and universities are you targeting?
The goal of the AMDA program is to break the recruiting mold and bring in a variety of skills, backgrounds, thoughts, and perspectives to achieve the best business results. The program will generate a renewed pipeline of high-caliber talent of racially and ethnically diverse individuals.
What is the overall goal of the AMDA program?
The idea for the program stems from the lack of diversity in the asset management industry, which historically has had a cookie-cutter approach to recruiting college graduates, focusing on those who study business, economics, finance, and accounting. The initiative addresses this root problem and strives to transform the industry.
Why is the AMDA program important for the asset management industry?
Frequently Asked Questions
The three firms will participate in a 24-month rotational development training program, in which junior research associates will work at each firm for eight months.
The firms are partnering on all aspects of the program, from agreeing to the target list of universities to aligning on the recruiting process and training. The cohort of six hired participants will be agreed upon unanimously by the three firms.
How will the firms partner with one another?
This program will seek diversity of thought and look to majors outside those that are traditionally well represented in the asset management field. Being deliberate about other majors will not only increase the applicant pool but also will increase the diversity of thought brought to the firms.
What fields of study are you targeting with this program and why?
We’re seeking intellectually curious individuals interested in being trained in financial modeling principles and learning more about the world of investing. Intellectual curiosity lends itself to the research process as critical thinking is a core skill necessary to do well in the role.
What type of participants are you targeting and why?
We will be working with the following Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs):
The program will continue with the remaining participants. Replacements will not be made mid-program.
What happens if a participant drops out of the program?
LGIM America – hybrid: Tue, Wed, Thu in office
William Blair – hybrid
Allstate Investments – hybrid
Will the selected participants work in-person or remotely?
Stipend for relocation
Opportunity to work with three prestigious asset management firms
Unique opportunities for mentorship and increased industry networks
Opportunity for career acceleration—Wall Street Prep course, ongoing learning opportunities
What are the incentives/pros for taking a position like this?
Market competitive compensation (base salary plus bonus) and benefits will be provided to all rotational employees.
How will program participants be compensated?
Over the course of two years, AMDA will give individuals exposure to three firms, their investment styles and philosophies, and triple the networks they would have had in a traditional role. Associates will also have a unique training experience that could not be provided by joining one firm. This experience blazes a trail to accelerate a career in asset management.
What will the selected participants gain from the experience?
Yes. When participants accept their offer, they are committing to the full program and working at all three firms.
Will AMDA participants be required to work at all three firms during the 24 months of the program?
We believe this exposure will be extremely beneficial. Meaningful training and exposure to three organizations is immeasurable. It also expands professional networks and provides an opportunity to experience various workplace cultures, aiding in finding the best fit.
How useful will exposure to three different firms be for a candidate?
No. This is the first time each of the firms has launched or participated in a program like AMDA.
Have any of the firms conducted programs like this in the past?
To grow the program to additional firms and outside the Chicago area.
What are the future plans for the program?
No. Program participants will start as a pair at each of the three firms and be seconded twice to subsequent firms.
Will all six participants rotate together?
LGIM America, William Blair Investment Management, and Allstate Investments have decided to keep the class size small to ensure the participants have the best possible experience and to help set them up for their success. This inaugural class size will allow each firm to truly focus on the development and growth of each participant.
How did you decide to hire six participants for the inaugural class?
At the end of the second year, each firm will provide support and guidance in obtaining a full-time job within the firms if desired. Employment is not guaranteed at the completion of the two years. Participants will interview for full-time employment with their firm(s) of interest. Employers will not compete for participants and will not coordinate with respect to post-rotation hiring.
Is employment guaranteed after the 24-month rotation?
Working within buy-side equity and fixed income research teams, the junior research associates will contribute to the research process to assist portfolio managers in making the best and most informed investment decisions on behalf of their clients.
What are the responsibilities of the role?
The program begins June 2023.
When will the six participants start the program?
AMDA program participants will work alongside regular full-time hires until their rotation is up and they move to a new firm. AMDA program participants will also receive additional training in accounting principles before their rotations begin.
If regular recruiting efforts will also be ongoing, how will the participants’ opportunities differ from a full-time employee hire?
All firms will continue with standard recruiting practices for positions outside the AMDA program. The AMDA program recruiting will be a joint effort between the three firms.
Will the firms continue with their standard recruiting efforts for research associates, or will this program replace that?
The recruiting process will include on-campus coffee chats, networking with professors, marketing by career services offices, and on-campus recruiting.
What are the components of the recruiting process?
Recruiting will begin in Fall 2022.
When will the recruiting process begin?
Bo Kim – William Blair
Kara Goodbrand – LGIM America
Hillary Israil – Allstate Investments
Who is overseeing the program for each firm?