Andrea Cortes '26

Andrea Cortes '26


North Providence, RI

How did you choose Bryant and finance?

I’m first-gen; my parents are both from Mexico. I was pretty much on my own in the college search process because my parents didn’t go to college, so I used the resources I had around me, like my high school accounting teacher. He’s a Bryant alum and would tell us about finance as a career and all the options it would give us. He encouraged me to go to Bryant and helped me through the process. 

Tell us about the finance conference you attended.  

The Women in Alternative Investments Career Forum is for women in finance. It’s a full-day career forum in New York City where we learned more about the options for women in finance, attend workshops, and network. I’m the first student to attend from Bryant. (Read more about her experience in this Bryant news story.)

Professor Mara Derderian encouraged you to attend. Has she become a mentor?

Yes, and I love her teaching style. She goes in-depth on topics and relates it all back to the real world. I love how she does that because it really deepens my understanding. 

Are you in any clubs that support your major?

I’m in the Finance Association. Every week, we bring in companies and they introduce us to their internship programs. It’s all Bryant alumni coming back as speakers. It’s really cool. 

This summer, I also had the opportunity to work with the PwC Accounting Careers Leadership Institute. I helped students from around the world learn more about the accounting profession and Bryant. I talked to professionals, made new connections, and learned so much. It was an amazing event!

How else are you involved?

I did the 4MILE program as a first-year student, and that introduced me to the Center for Diversity and Inclusion. I wanted to stay involved with them and get to know more people there. It has such good vibes. This year I became a mentor for 4MILE. 

I’m a commuter student, so I started off slowly getting involved. I joined one club and that went well. This year, I added another one. I also work part time locally as a lifeguard, so I’m just balancing it all. I love Bryant so far.

What are your future plans?

I want to learn more about the different options in finance before I decide what path to take. I do know that I’d love to travel a bit after graduation to use my Italian skills!

A Connected Community

Bryant's purposeful student life delivers co-curricular immersion with an inspiring, collegial community. Students forge deep connections that last a lifetime.

A headshot of Hannah Sheldon.
Hannah Sheldon '20

“The professors are so excited about what they do and want to share it. They want to work with you and want you to be excited about what you're learning as well. Working with an economist gave me a new perspective on the process of economic research. It’s a real differentiator.”

Danielle Palmer '24 MBA
Danielle Palmer ’24 MBA

“I love the experience of working with other professionals. Not only am I making connections with my professors, but I’m also making connections with my classmates. You really get a sense of community in addition to the experience of getting your degree.”  

Miranda Pena ’23
Miranda Pena ’23

“I organized lots of fundraisers back home, and when I took my first project management class, I realized everything I’ve been doing to run those is actually a career. It’s something I love and have been doing all along.”