Summer Internship Spotlight: Madeline Perez (MSF'20), PenFed Credit Union

Posted in News Story

Each year, our students spend their summers in Washington, D.C., across the nation, and around the world working in corporate, nonprofit, and government organizations. Meet a few of our graduate and undergraduate students in this summer’s Internship Spotlight Series.

Madeline Perez (MSF’20)

Graduate Intern, PenFed Credit Union
McLean, VA

What are you doing this summer?

This summer, I am a graduate intern at PenFed Credit Union in McLean, VA.  I support their lending services team in credit analytics and risk policy.  I also lead a group of undergraduate interns who are working on a project involving student loan refinancing.  My group is in charge of the financial aspect of the project and we also collaborate with two other teams in charge of tech and marketing.  Additionally, I am participating in one of the MSF summer clinic programs.  My team is working with Quona Capital on a VC/Fintech investment project.  In between PenFed and MSF work, I am running and training in preparation for the 2019 NCAA cross country season.

How does your internship relate to your professional or personal interests?

This internship has allowed me to draw upon my problem solving, leadership, and analytical skills.  I’ve also had the opportunity to be very hands on with the data and have learned a lot about risk, which is a critical component of any business operation.  On top of that, PenFed primarily serves military members, which aligns very closely with my personal interests and values.  I have a sister at the United States Air Force Academy, so it has been incredible getting to work for a company whose mission is to serve our nations defenders and provide them with the opportunity to realize their full financial potential and dreams.   

How did you find the internship?

I was introduced to this internship through a personal contact I made during my time at Georgetown University.  I am very grateful to them for introducing me to this opportunity. 

What’s the most interesting or impactful aspect of your internship?

Right now, I am testing data and hypotheses to see if we can establish a targeted risk threshold for PenFed auto loans.  Additionally, I really enjoy working with the undergraduate interns I lead.  They have impressed me with the quality of their work and the consistent effort they demonstrate every day. 

Any advice for other finance students?

Keep an open mind!  There are many different career paths within the financial services industry.  Try to figure out areas that interest you most and if you’re offered a job in a space you hadn’t considered, be willing to take a chance.  While the specific work between roles may vary, everything is still grounded in your ability to problem solve and apply the knowledge you’ve gained from your education to real world projects.

What else should we know?

It has been an honor working alongside a number of veterans and so many great people at PenFed.  I truly enjoy going to work every single day and look forward to the rest of my time there.