January 17, 2012
The Alumni Insider’s View…Program (AIV) helps students get their
careers started, and Manuel Cuzco ’09TCB is living proof.
graduate participated in a host of AIV events during his student
years at St. John’s University and, thanks to the advice and
connections he gained from them, now works in Asset Management for
J.P. Morgan Chase.
“Being part of the Alumni Insider’s View…Program taught me the
importance of networking and building relationships,” Cuzco said.
“Not only did I grow professionally, but personally as well. If you
surround yourself with positive and helpful people, individuals who
are highly motivated, then that energy will rub off on you.”
In particular, Cuzco took advantage of the AIV… U.S. Capital
Program, which allowed him to travel to Washington, D.C. and meet
St. John’s alumni serving as political and business professionals.
He also attended AIV… Day on Wall Street, in which he toured the
floor of the New York Stock Exchange and made connections with
graduates working in the financial sector.
In his current job at J.P. Morgan, Cuzco assists in the
day-to-day management of ultra high-net-worth individuals, with a
focus on clients in South America. He believes that the skills he
learned from AIV helped him to his career.
“Interacting with alumni really helped me to work on my
networking abilities, which is so important in the professional
world,” he explained. “So I think my current position can
definitely be traced back to those AIV experiences.”
Born in Ecuador, Cuzco moved with his family to the United
States when he was three years old and has lived here ever since.
Catholic education has always been important to him, which made St.
John’s a natural fit.
“My parents and I agreed that I should continue my education at
a premier Catholic institution,” he said. “Of course, St. John’s
was my main choice.”
The Vincentian values of the University have greatly impacted
Cuzco as a person and have even shaped his approach to his
profession. He believes that the work he does in finance can
benefit those in the community who need it most.
“The Vincentian values are directly related to what I do in the
financial world,” he noted. “At the end of the day, we impact many,
many lives, so caring for others – providing for those who are less
fortunate – is extremely important.”
Ultimately, Cuzco looks back fondly on his St. John’s education
and believes that it provided him with all the tools he needed to
succeed in the professional world. He now hopes to come back and
participate in AIV to help students who are in the same position
that he was in just a few years ago.
“All of the programs and activities that I participated in at
St. John’s helped to make me the person I am today,” he said. “I
learned so much from our alumni, and now I want to give back.
Financial institutions want applicants who are well-rounded
individuals, who have developed themselves both professionally and
personally, who are cultured and have a global vision. That’s
exactly what St. John’s and AIV gave me, and I’m so grateful to
have had that opportunity.”