Advice for Career Change Into ER

A few months ago I posted looking for advice as this upcoming summer (2014) I will be transitioning out the military and looking for an entry level equity research role with a small/boutique firm. I understand reference my background I have an uphill battle, but was hoping if you could provide feedback on my resume and/or if there is anything I need to do over the next 6-8 months to better my chances of landing a full-time offer. Also, as I cannot start working until after July 5, 2014, when should I start sending out applications? Below is a rough copy of my resume, do not mind the formatting, just to provide a professional background for sound advice. If I should leave anything off and elaborate anywhere please let me know. Thank you. I will be taking CFA level 1 next December as I will be moving back to the US around the time it is offered in June. Separating from the military and moving from Turkey to the US will be stressful enough with a wife and two small children, no need to add to the list. Better to wait, study when I am focused an pass. Additionally, I intend to complete an MBA in 3-5 years after I gain some professional experience outside of the military. Ideally I would like to attend INSEAD as I am have strong interest in their international aspect.

Once again thank you!


University of North Dakota , GPA 3.6 M_aster of Science in Applied Economics_ Troy University , GPA 3.8 Master of Science in International Relations

Professional Experience

United States Air Force - 2003-2014

  • Leads and supervises a crew of two controllers and one interpreter in a joint nation facility
  • Oversees 38,000 annual aircraft operations and $10M worth of equipment
  • Enhanced facility efficiency through the overhaul 35 air traffic control quick reference guides
  • Managed award winning Squadron Safety Program on 60 personnel, resulting zero mishaps
  • Pushed individuals struggling with standards, conducted 30+ hours of one on one training, fitness scores increased 20%
  • Orchestrated airdrop operations enabling 215 Special Forces members to remain combat ready
  • Directed Unit Fitness Program for 150 personnel; 97% pass rate on military fitness standards
  • Served as international liaison to 20 Belgian Air Force members during 30 nation exercis
  • Provided air traffic control services to six airports servicing 275,000 annual aircraft and $4.2M worth of equipment
  • Cleared 25 artillery operations, facilitating critical requests to shield troops from suppressed insurgent attacks
  • Supported vital convoy missions, directing F-16s to provide cover, allowed supplies to be delivered without incident
  • Relayed surface to air fire reports, cleared airspace and tailored aircraft routes to avoid attack

Volunteer Experience

Seeking Alpha/** Wall Street Oasis**Finance Writer

  • Attracted 1,300 weekly readers by presenting a researched analysis on commodities, equities and emerging markets

Volunteer Nepal Village Planting and Harvesting Prepared four fields for rice planting, maintained six fields of maize and herded seven goats daily


Air Space and Power Journal - Book Reviews

  • U.S Defense Politics: The Origins of Security Policy
  • The International Arms Trade: War and Conflict in the Modern World
  • The Soviet Biological Weapons Program: A History

Technical Skills, Awards and Extracurricular

Technical Skills: STATA and Excel

Awards: Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year, Excellence in Leadership, Air Traffic Control Watch Supervisor of the Quarter

Extracurricular : Traveled to 19 countries, maintains family’s portfolio valued at $10,000, actively involved in investment community

I responded last time (July) so I just have a couple thoughts:

-You should have signed up for December Level 1 this year. Level 1 isn’t that hard, and at this point you will probably be getting out without any exams passed until August 2014 (any resumes until then will just say CFA Level 1 Candidate, which means nothing).

-The seeking alpha/WSO stuff is a good start - but your time could have been better spent studying and knocking out Level 1. Anyway, examples of whatever research you did should be near the top of your resume (or attached), as that is pertinent to your field.

-Your resume, when sending out, should be 1 page. Don’t mention herding goats.

Start networking/looking in the area you want to live. Post your resume on internet job sites, the head-hunters should find you eventually. They found me pretty quick.

I like your goat herding on resume. that would be interesting to hear about. no joke


Thank you for the response once again. Trust me I wanted to take CFA Level 1 this December however it was not feasible. Not trying to make excuses, but my wife and I currently live in Turkey and were expecting our second child a few months ago. Well due to the military insurance we were unable to give birth here and needed to fly back to the US. Long story short, my wife, daughter and I traveled 8,000 miles to welcome our second daughter. Which then required us to rush birth certificates, SSN, passports etc… then travel another 8,000 miles before we were able to settle back into our own home. Stressful time period made slightly more stressful due to travel does not equate into adequate study time for CFA level 1. With that being said my intention is to take CFA level 1 in June.

Regarding the herding goats, I thought it would make for a unique interview and add something slightly different to my resume to stand-out. I am aware it does not add anything to the resume nor any resume for that matter. However it is a unique/funny story. Once again long-story short. I had to herd, more or less follow, goats up and down the side of a mountain (no trails just mountain) for 2-4 hours a day with a 12 year old Neapli boy who spoke no English in a remote village of Nepal. Zero clue what I was doing, what was going on and where I would end up that day or night.

Once thank you for the input and I will begin sending out my resume!

Valid excuse. i took a year off before taking Level III because my son was due in May.