Each day our students will blog about some of their experiences in New York City. Our second entry for Tuesday, 1/17/2012 comes from Darren Smith, Thomas Haggerty, Ben Plotke, & Alex Pirro.
Today we met up at around 7:30am to walk over to Bloomberg’s New York headquarters, which were just a few blocks away from where we’re staying. Our tour guide began by explaining the transparent culture at Bloomberg, and pointed out that there were very few solid walls. Most walls were glass, so anyone could see in as they passed by. The first floor we visited was known as a “hub” floor, where all employees have to pass through to access the two floors above or below. The hub floor also houses a cafeteria and a news set where some of the Bloomberg News anchors film their segments. From there, we went down only one of three spiral escalators in the United States to the floor below and ended up right in front of where Charlie Rose films his talk show. This floor housed all of the buy side analysts who work in teams and manage all clients east of Chicago, as well as over two hundred help desk support staff. It was very interesting to see the people we interact with when we push the help button on the Bloomberg terminal. The tour guide explained how the support staff helps us sort through some of the 30,000 functions that the terminal offers to find just the right ones to help accomplish what we need.
After leaving Bloomberg, we went back up to the hotel to change into street clothes and then headed down to Canal Street, which is famous for its “it looks real” merchandise. Some members of our group were able to “legally” purchase some Louis Vuitton knock-offs. It is quite the experience to have people walk up to you and ask if you want a watch or a purse and then list all of the designer bags that they have to offer. We took the subway home only to find we had gotten off a stop too early, but it worked to our advantage. While walking to “Rays Pizza”(recommended by a fellow student) for lunch, we stumbled upon Rockefeller center where several people were ice-skating. Coming from California, an outdoor ice rink is quite the rarity.
From there, we met back at the hotel and got ready again to go to Bernstein Wealth Management, regarded as one of the best research firms for financial information. We went through security screening and continued up the elevator to the 47th floor, for many of us the tallest floor we had ever stood on. The view of central park from the conference room we were lead into was amazing. We met with Jim, a managing director, who laid out the groundwork for the company’s history, operations, as well as his career with the firm. Afterwards, Chris Lee and Chris Filley, two Chapman alums who currently works at Bernstein, fielded a Q & A session which proved to be very informative. We departed from Bernstein and returned to the hotel to relax and rest up, as it was the eve of the 21st birthday of one of our class members. We went to the Japanese restaurant Kumo for sushi and cocktails. We called it an early night, since we would be going to the NYSE at 10am the next morning. Our first day of touring went well, and the class especially enjoyed the visit to AllianceBernstein.
– Darren, Thomas, Ben & Alex