Photo: Walter Zamora
Walter Zamora
Graduation: Fall 2013

Why Finance?

I chose my major based on what I felt would be most useful to me in my career. I decided finance was a good balance between art and science, so I went with it.

Advice for undeclared students: My advice for undeclared students is don't worry too much about it. Find something you like or find useful and study that. Chances are that whatever you do later in your career will have little to do with what you studied in college. Also, get involved with student organizations as much as possible.

Finding Your Major

Initial career dream: I wasn't sure what major I wanted, but I knew I wanted to study something in the business school.

Majors declared: I first declared corporate communications, then declared general finance, and finally changed to investment finance.

Influences: The decision making was mostly done on my own, but I couldn't have put all my requirements in order without Alexia Apollo, my advisor during my first few years.

The Highlights

Most rewarding class: I could say that my business communications class was part of what convinced me to quit smoking and saved my life, or that history of rock music invaluably deepened my appreciation of music, or that t

Best thing about your major: I don't mind the prestige that comes with being a student at McCombs, but most importantly I enjoy the experience of being a student there. I am taught by the top faculty in the country, I have top students as my peers, and I learn material that is at the forefront of the business world thanks to the high quality and quantity of research that goes on. This idea blows my mind.

Reality Check

Most surprising thing about your major: Every day I notice how much I look at things based on risk and reward. I think this is a direct result of all my finance classes.

One roadbump: When I was accepted to the School of Undergraduate Studies, I was a little upset at first because I did not make it into my first choice, McCombs School of Business, but it gave me a lot of hope because I saw it as an opportunity to get to UT, explore, and later transfer to whatever school I chose.

I tried to transfer to McCombs my sophomore year, but my GPA was too low. Instead of looking elsewhere and changing my mind, I decided to work harder for it because I knew it was possible. So I worked harder for it and got in my junior year.

Outside the Classroom

Clubs and organizations: I am currently financial director for the Undergraduate Studies Council and also the chair for the College Tuition and Budget Advisory Committee. I participate in the UT Student Senate as part of my responsibility of being a financial director.

Internships and research: I did two internships in El Salvador (my home country). One was with a local bank called Credomatic and another one with a distributor of baby products and other consumer goods called DALSE.