Internship Diaries

How Getting a Job at a Chicago Venture Capital Firm Made Her an Advocate for Women in Finance and Tech

When more than 20% of the graduating classes of elite colleges are taking jobs in financial services after graduating, it’s impossible to ignore the women on the front lines! Welcome to finance week in Internship Diaries!

Erin Martinez used the resources at her school to find a job in Chicago at a venture capital firm! She shares how her degree in finance has helped her in recruiting, her newfound love of the intersection of finance and technology, and how she hopes to be an advocate for women in this field.

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Name: Erin Martinez

Job Title: Summer Associate at Origin Ventures

Location: Chicago, IL

College: University of Notre Dame

Year: Rising Junior

Major: Finance and Art History

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What are you doing this summer?

Origin Ventures is a Chicago-based venture capital firm that invests in technology startups across the country in mostly series A investments focused in software, consumer, and marketplace verticals. As an associate at the firm this summer, I help to source possible investments, conduct research and due diligence, and work on market research.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I’m still figuring that out! Next summer, I will be working at J.P. Morgan in Investment Banking in New York City, but going forward I would love to be involved with growing software and technology companies and building the communities they’re in through venture capital or growth equity. I think the impact that technology has on society, both at the local and global level, is phenomenal, and would love to be involved with the tech community at the intersection of technology and finance.

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How did you get your internship?

I found my internship through an email from Notre Dame’s Career Center, and was matched with Origin Ventures through an interview process through the Illinois Venture Capital Association, which supports undergraduate internships in Private Equity and Venture Capital in the state of Illinois.

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What do you wish you had known during your internship search?

My best advice for anyone looking for jobs in finance is to apply to as many opportunities as you find interesting, and not to be discouraged if things don’t work out immediately! I initially thought I was going to work in investment banking this summer, and I’m glad I branched out a little bit and was able to have the opportunity to work in venture capital and get exposure to what turns out is something I’m very passionate about.

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What does a day in the life look like?

My day in the life is a little less traditional than the usual finance internship! Monday through Thursday, I usually get into the office around 8:30am and leave around 6pm. The dress code is fairly lax–I usually wear a nice top, jeans, and nicer sneakers to work everyday. My office is in West Loop, so being close to French Market and a lot of different restaurants is a lot of fun. Only a couple weeks in, I’ve already had the opportunity to attend the Chicago Innovation Un-Gala, go out to lunch with my coworkers, go to SoulCycle as an office, and listen to so many interesting pitches from entrepreneurs.


How has this job changed what you see yourself doing in the future?

This job has given me unique exposure at a fairly early stage in my career to what I believe is one of the most fascinating, dynamic industries out there. Going forward, I realized that I would love to work in VC one day and strive to build companies and increase the number of women in tech and investing.

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Hello! My name is Rosana Rabines! I'm a student, stationery enthusiast, and runner constantly reorganizing my life to make the most of my college experience in Chicago.

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