Embracing the human experience

Trulaske College of Business student Kira Bond taps into more than just academics to prepare for her career in finance.

Kira Bond

Dec. 12, 2022
Contact: Deidra Ashley,

As a high school student raised in Pennsylvania, Kira Bond knew that she would go to college on the East Coast. But then an offer to join the Trulaske College of Business’ prestigious Cornell Leadership Program (CLP) changed her mind, landing her in the Show-Me State. Four-and-a-half years after life changed course, Bond is preparing to complete her bachelor's degree in business administration with an emphasis in finance and banking. Her experiences at Mizzou have prepared her for the next step: joining Stifel's 2023 Analyst Class in the Investment Banking Division in New York City.

Exploring and connecting

As an incoming freshman, Bond didn’t know any students on campus, but that didn’t slow her down. She immediately looked for ways to get involved, and by the time her first year was over, she was instructing TigerX cycling classes at MizzouRec, had rushed Alpha Chi Omega and joined Alpha Kappa Psi, a professional business fraternity.

She also connected with classmates and with the world of business through the CLP. Founded in 2006, the program provides high-performing students with an opportunity to develop leadership skills and business acumen through a carefully designed set of experiences — including trips to Dallas, Denver and New York City — to meet business-thought leaders, attend leadership seminars and pursue service opportunities.

With this level of involvement came the opportunity to meet people from all over the world, giving Bond a new appreciation for human connection.

“No one has life truly figured out, which is honestly comforting to know,” she said. “But we can try our best to create a sense of stability with our identities, motivations, passions and support systems to help us tackle the things we can control. It is inspiring to see the business leaders, most of whom are Mizzou alumni, forge their own paths in this world.”

Learning and experiencing

In addition to her regular set of classes at Mizzou, Bond took advantage of hands-on learning opportunities as often as she could. She spent a year abroad studying management and data analysis at the London School of Economics and Political Science — a challenging experience during the COVID-19 pandemic.

When she returned to the U.S., she gained an inside look into financial markets through an internship with Tradebot Systems, Inc., a high-frequency equity trading firm based in Kansas City. Those experiences provided additional background as Bond jumped into more formal coursework in classes like Finance 4020, taught by Assistant Professor Matteo Binfarè.

“In the upper level, the classes were smaller, and the content was more specialized to my career interests,” Bond said. “I was especially interested in Professor Binfarè’s career abroad before going into academia, as I partly chose finance for a career that takes me global. He helped me explore my interests in investments and asset management, recommended programs on campus and even helped me land an internship at Nuveen in Chicago last summer."

The College of Business focuses on providing real-world experiences to prepare graduates for their careers. Offerings such as the Investment Fund Management Program and the Allen Angel Capital Education Program gave Bond a chance to make real investment decisions and better understand the intricacies of portfolio management. In Finance 4820, Bond landed the role of portfolio manager for a $1.6 million portion of the University of Missouri’s endowment.

As a business student, Bond is grateful for the opportunities the college provides and for the people who have supported and encouraged her along the way.

"Trulaske has so many amazing people, programs and organizations that help students succeed,” Bond said. She highlights her involvement in the University of Missouri Investment Group for providing a cohort of ambitious and intelligent students to help her prepare for a career in high finance.

“I’ve attended multiple day-long sessions on topics including business mechanics and valuation through our partnership with Mike Kimpel and his platform Finance|able,” she explained. “To combine what I’ve learned in these sessions with formal hands-on coursework at Mizzou has broadened my perspective on how I think about the world and the thought process behind making a good business.”

Mary Beth Marrs, director of the Cornell Leadership Program, says Bond’s dedication to her studies, her involvement in college and university activities, and her passion for finance did not go unnoticed during her time at Mizzou.

“Kira intentionally sought experiences that made her uncomfortable and these resulted in her growth as a person over the past four years,” Marrs said. “I would describe her time at Mizzou as one of discovery. She will take what she learned here and be an amazing representative of Mizzou as she starts her career in New York City.”

As Bond prepares for commencement, she said she’s confident she can take on the ups and downs ahead because of the friendships and relationships she’s made at MU.

“My diverse experiences have taught me how to effectively communicate with a variety of people and understand how others perceive me,” Bond said. “My ability to foster environments that allow for this deeper human connection, both personally and professionally, has been greatly enhanced by the skills I developed while at Mizzou.”

Story written by Kevin Reape

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