Search overlay

Search form




        Two of Harbert's Best

        May 1, 2014 By Joe McAdory <

        All News


        Hunter Hayes and Paige Lenssen recognized as Harbert College's SGA Outstanding Student and graduation marshal, respectively.

        Hunter Hayes and Paige Lenssen both have options, literally and figuratively. Lenssen will soon begin her career as an OPTIONS analyst at Raymond James Financial. Hayes has a job offer from Merrill Lynch for equity research, but is also in negotiations with another firm.

        Both will graduate from the Raymond J. Harbert College of Business with honors on Saturday, May 3.

        Hayes, from Jacksonville, Fla., was named SGA Outstanding Student for the spring and is earning degrees in Finance and Piano Performance. He is also a four-year letterman on the Auburn University men’s track team as a distance runner.

        “It's still sinking in that I've been selected for such a wonderful honor,” Hayes said.

        Lenssen, an Oviedo, Fla., native, can be remembered for leading the Auburn University Marching Band on to the field at Jordan-Hare Stadium as drum major. Lenssen, who is earning degrees in Finance and English (Professional and Public Writing), was named the college’s graduation marshal for the 2 p.m. ceremony at Auburn Arena.

        “Not only has the Harbert College of Business afforded me an education in finance from some of the most engaging and intelligent professors at the university, but it also prepared me for all the interviews and recruiting events that led to my job offer from Raymond James,” said Lenssen, who will begin work at the company’s headquarters in St. Petersburg, Fla., in June. “Additionally, the college's mentorship program paired me with a great mentor in the financial industry who has provided invaluable advice to me as I've prepared to enter the working world.”

        OPTIONS is a rotational development program at Raymond James, where Lenssen will gain valuable experience in municipal fixed-income trading, banking and operational risk and privacy in her first year.

        Whereas Hayes’ immediate employment isn’t concrete, the 2013 Rhodes Scholarship nominee and six-time Top Tiger Award winner knows what he wants to do.

        “I definitely want to be involved in the capital markets in some way or another, and I'm specifically interested in equity markets,” he said. “I think my strengths lie in quantitative analysis, but I'm open to a lot of things.

        “The Harbert College of Business has been indispensable for me as I prepare for my career. Probably the best opportunity I've had as a student was being chosen to go on the Tigers on Wall Street trip over Spring Break this semester. The networking opportunities were incredible but the greatest part about it was learning about what people actually do on Wall Street. I've also been exposed to a ton of people and information through Executive Society and the Office of Professional and Career Development.”

        Lenssen served as an active member of college’s Women in Business Organization and earned the 2013 Mary Matherly Durant Award winner, the 2012 Mortar Board Enloe Yates Award winner, and was a National Merit Scholar. She considered band to be the “hallmark” experience of her time at Auburn.

        “Serving the Auburn University Marching Band as a drum major and section leader was an honor and a joy, and it really brought me a new understanding of the words of the Auburn Creed,” she said. “I made my closest friends through the Auburn University Marching Band, and going to two national championships was just icing on the cake!”

        Hayes, who studied piano in the summer of 2013 in Vienna, had the opportunity to address Harbert College scholarship recipients and donors last fall as the keynote speaker at the college’s annual scholarship ceremony.

        “I talked about the importance of finance and some of my experiences with people I met in Vienna while studying their last summer,” he said. “Many people were openly hostile towards me when they found out I wanted to pursue a career in finance which, to me, indicated an unfortunate ignorance to the necessity of finance in the global economy. I encouraged all the scholars in attendance to know exactly why they might want to pursue a career in business so that they could intelligently defend and enlighten people when challenged about their rationale.

        “I believe that money does not make a man, it reveals him. Unfortunately, much of the world blames money for evil things happening rather than blaming the people that used the money.”