GRADUCon 2018 - U.S. Job Search for International Students


As an international student, the process of navigating the job search and avoiding potential pitfalls within the American job market can be a disconcerting concept for many. Attend this panel if you’re an international student who would like to hear from someone who has been in your shoes, and to take away valuable advice on how you can adopt a different mindset and be successful in a job search process that is different from what you may be used to in your home country. At this panel, you will hear alumni from different countries to share their perspectives on how they successfully navigated the process and negotiated their job offers. Panelists will discuss and provide advice regarding the various challenges that international students enounter when entering the U.S job market.


Akshay Chhabra, Analytics Specialist, McKinsey & Company (MSc Analytics 2015)

Akshay is an analytics specialist with years of experience in data science across a host of industries with a prime focus on customer experience in Financial Services and Pharmaceutical industries. He has worked in both an analytics consulting as well as in-house analytics setup and because of his experience shares a unique perspective of how to drive value out of analytics for big organizations as well as build organizations with data science at the center. On a personal note, Akshay is an avid travel and has traveled to 21 countries and 52 cities within the last 8 months.

Kibashini Rani N Periasami, Investment Research Analyst, Abbot Downing (MS Financial Mathematics 2016)

Kibashini (Kiba) Rani completed a Bachelor’s Degree in Actuarial Science and Applied Statistics from Purdue University and graduated from the Financial Mathematics Program in December 2016. After completing her undergraduate degree, Kiba worked for IBM Malaysia as a Financial Analyst. During her time in the FinMath Program, Kiba completed multiple internships/projects at Chicago-based firms – Enhanced Investment Partners, League Trading, and Gator Trading. In addition, she was a research assistant to a PhD student from the University of Chicago Economics Department. She currently works for Abbot Downing as an Investment Research Analyst.

Jason Peng, Analyst, JP Morgan Asset Management (MS Financial Math 2017)

Jiachen Peng, Analyst, is a member of the Institutional Strategy and Analytics team. He joined firm since 2017, and works on providing asset allocation, capital management, risk management and other analytical services to institutional clients. Prior to joining J.P. Morgan, he worked at Goldman Sachs as a quantitative strategist developing systematic trading strategies. Jason earned an M.S. in Financial Mathematics from the University of Chicago, and holds FINRA Series 7 and 63 licenses.

Chiara Montanari, Associate Director of External Relations, Career Advancement, University of Chicago (PhD Romance Languages and Literatures 2015)

Chiara Montanari the Associate Director of External Relations at the University of Chicago Office of Career Advancement, where she oversees international programming and summer grants for undergraduate students as well as international employer relationships. Prior to joining Career Advancement two years ago, she taught Italian at the College for ten years. She holds a BA in Modern Languages from Ca’ Foscari in Venice, Italy and a PhD in Romance Languages from the University of Chicago.


Amima Diagne, Assistant Director for Student Services, Office of International Affairs, University of Chicago (MA Psychology Chicago School of Professional Psychology)

As the current Assistant Director for Student Services at OIA, Amima has a long history with the university. Amima attended The College from 2005-2009, where she earned a B.A. in Psychology. After graduating in 2009, she pursued a career in advertising, working with companies such as The Chicago Tribune and Leo Burnett. During this time, she regularly engaged in alumni activities and providing career advice and guidance to undergraduate students. In 2014, she decided to change career paths to focus on her passion for facilitating the professional and educational growth and opportunities of others. She returned to the University to work in the Office of International Affairs, where she seeks to provide holistic support and advocacy for UChicago’s international student community. Amima has also earned a M.A. in Industrial & Organizational (I/O) Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, and is currently working towards her PhD in the same field.