Matt Seely '14 on Career Fast Track
Matt Seely '14 learned the value of connecting with others on a personal and professional level at Christ School. Combine that with book smarts, and it is no wonder that the Class of 2014's valedictorian is already finding his share of career success. Seely is currently an investment banking analyst for Simmons Energy in Houston, part of a two-year program. Simmons specializes in the energy industry, offering mergers and acquisitions advisory, capital markets execution, and investment research. Seely has already accepted a job offer to transition into private equity in the summer of 2020. And there is always the option of returning to his college alma mater to pursue a postgraduate degree through the University of Virginia's Darden Future Year Scholars Program in five years, a program which he just gained admission to this past year.
Question: College and work have taken you to a number of different places since leaving Christ School. How did you end up in Houston?
Answer: I was in the undergraduate business school at UVA as a Finance major. Most people who go into investment banking go to New York, but having come from a small town in South Carolina, that never really appealed to me. I had a natural attraction to the energy industry. Having spent a fair amount of time in Houston, I focused my recruiting search there and had an awesome experience (with Simmons) last summer as an analyst. I had the opportunity to come back full-time and took it.
Question: What appeals to you about this line of work?
Answer: Specifically, with energy investment banking, I feel like it gives me a platform to have an effect on the world around me, while also doing something intellectually stimulating. Energy literally makes the world go 'round, so I feel like I'm making an impact. Working with CEO's and CFO's of large public companies on a daily basis is one of my favorite parts of the job. At 23 years old, sometimes I feel like I am in rooms that I have no business being in (laughs).
Question: What do you do in your free time?
Answer: I play a lot of golf. I'm really into hunting and am able to do that a lot as well. I coach a Little League team with five of my friends. We're coincidentally the Astros. I actually never played baseball, but we're friends with all of the other coaches in the league, so that's how I got into it. The guys we're coaching played in the Little League World Series last summer, so they are really good.
Question: When you look back, what stands out about your time at Christ School?
Answer: Lots of highlights, such as Asheville School Week and service trips to New Orleans. However, my favorite memories were not so much the big events like that, but just hanging around and having fun when there was nothing going on. It's pretty awesome when you are only a 30-second walk away from all of your best friends. In terms of lessons learned, I would say that developing relationships at Christ School has really helped me the most. I learned how important attitude is. I didn't like Christ School at first as an eighth grader. But I changed my attitude and ended up making the most of it. I had a great five years that I wouldn't trade for anything. Attitude is everything and it's like I tell others, Christ School is whatever you want to make it.