Jackson Buonamia, class of 2017, on the football field in his football gear

Jackson Buonamia '17

  • Major: Economics
  • Hometown: Snellville, Georgia

As the starting left tackle on the Furman football team, Jackson Buonamia is used to clearing the way for other people. In the spring of 2016, however, he got a taste of his own medicine when a hole opened by Peter Griffin ’11 led to him landing a coveted internship at Bank of America in New York City.

“I would never have been able to get my resume considered without Peter,” Buonamia said. “And that’s the biggest thing, especially when you come from a smaller school that doesn’t have as much name recognition as an Ivy League school. You really need to have someone championing you, and usually that comes from alums.”

Griffin is the development director for The Furman Metropolitan Fellowship when he’s not serving as an associate in equity sales with Bank of America Merrill Lynch in New York, and he met Buonamia during the Fellowship interview process. Though Buonamia ultimately wasn’t one of the final two selected, Griffin was impressed and promised to help Buonamia in his pursuit of a career in trading and investment banking.

“Just getting the interview is the hard part, because in reality 50 or 60,000 people apply online for these things, and resume upon resume just get thrown out,” Buonamia said.

Of course, Buonamia still had to nail the interview, which he did thanks in no small part to real-world preparation from his involvement with the Furman Investment Club, which manages more than $400,000 of the university’s endowment each year in conjunction with the business and accounting and economics departments. Then he excelled in the internship, leaving him in the enviable position of being able to focus on his final year as a college athlete.

“The internship program ended with me receiving a full-time offer, so I will go back next July and I will be a credit-trading analyst on the trading floor,” Buonamia said.