A Reminder That Athletics Scores Highly With Bank Recruiters

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The lineup for Thursday's March Madness basketball shootout between Cornell and top seed Kentucky supports the truism that athletic achievements can aid careers in finance.

Two current and two recent former players on Cornell's squad have done or are about to do summer internships at Goldman Sachs. Backup forward Mark Coury, a finance major, landed a sales and trading internship there this summer and might pursue a permanent slot upon graduating in 2011. Bloomberg News reports:

Coury won't be the first Cornell basketball player to spend his summer in New York at Goldman Sachs. Current teammate Louis Dale and former teammates Khaliq Gant and Jason Battle also held internships at the investment bank. Battle now is a securities analyst at Goldman Sachs.

Dale, a senior guard who scored 26 points in Cornell's 87-69 second-round upset over fourth-seed Wisconsin, was an intern in sales and trading at Goldman. He's studying policy analysis and management at Cornell. Although he hopes to play pro basketball, banking appeals to him too, he told Bloomberg:

"I could see myself going back into banking. It's exciting. Sales and trading is very much like basketball. The competition, the atmosphere, it's very dynamic. You don't know what to expect every day, and I like that."

The Big Red's pipeline into Goldman is a handy reminder that athletic activities, and especially achievements, are worth citing in a resume or interview - even if you lack NCAA tournament experience (or an Ivy League education). In contrast, career experts say it's best to avoid any mention of non-athletic hobbies, even intellectual ones, except when needed to offset a perceived defect like not having an undergraduate degree.

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