Paige Sigmon has loved the city of Baltimore ever since she was a young girl. Growing up as an Orioles fan in Leesburg, Virginia, the city’s character, history and post-industrial waterfront were never too far away. But Sigmon could never have imagined that she would be working her dream job and living in the Inner Harbor – especially just months after graduating from college.
That is, until she met Jim Mugele.
Sigmon graduated Summa Cum Laude from High Point University in December 2013 with a degree in business administration and minors in finance and economics. She attended HPU’s 90th anniversary networking event in Baltimore in September 2014. There, she met Jim Mugele, an HPU alumnus of 1978, member of the Alumni Association Board of Directors and senior vice president at Robert W. Baird & Co., a major financial services firm in Maryland.
“Jim was eager to help me start my career in Baltimore,” Sigmon recalls. “He began sending my resume to contacts he had in the financial industry.”
From that, Sigmon interviewed with major investment companies like T. Rowe Price and Legg Mason. She was then contacted by Brown Advisory, an independent investment management firm committed to delivering a combination of first-class performance, strategic advice and the highest level of client service. Brown Advisory has a long legacy, continuing Alex Brown & Sons’ 200-year tradition of investment success, absolute integrity and unwavering devotion to their clients’ best interests.
“From the moment I received a call from Brown Advisory, I knew it was a perfect fit. This was the company I wanted to build my career with.”
And just a few weeks later, Sigmon landed a position on the Client Services Team as an operations associate at Brown Advisory. She helps onboard new clients, builds client portfolios and assists with asset transfers – all skills she learned in her business and finance classes taught by HPU professors Dr. Phillip Norwood, Dr. Stephanie Crofton and Dr. Steven Lifland.
“The Career and Internship Services team stresses to current students the importance of networking with alumni,” says Sue Brien, associate director of employee relations. “We explain the enormity of connections they can make through a group of people that are all part of the shared HPU community. For instance, each year we have several alumni come back to assist their employers in recruiting new talent by attending the Career and Internship Expo. There is pride attached to their alma mater and they want to give back.”
Because of Mugele’s pivotal influence in her career, Sigmon is now involved with HPU’s Alumni Association and wants to help other graduates land their dream jobs, too.
“You cannot find a position in today’s job market without networking. Using the contacts that HPU gives you can be extremely beneficial,” Sigmon says. “Take advantage of every opportunity HPU offers, both before and after graduation. You never know whose hand you’re going to shake. It can be a life changing – it obviously was for me.
“Living and working in Baltimore: it’s a dream come true, and none of this would have happened without hard work and the support of HPU.”