Diary of … the next financial shark

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Jacob Silver is a senior business administration major born and raised in South Florida. His hobbies include playing basketball, hanging out with friends and listening to music. Besides being a member of the South Florida Young Professionals, he is a licensed financial advisor and an aspiring attorney. His life philosophy is to not let anyone tell you what’s the right way to do something and follow your own path to success as there are a million ways to the same destination.

I’ve always strived to be different from the everyday college student. Whether the distinctions I was looking for came as planned or not, my long and bumpy road has brought me here. I’m finally at the end of my undergraduate studies, applying to law schools and trying to cherish every last minute of college life I have left. I wasn’t always the best student or best candidate, but my hunger, drive and outgoing personality never failed to bring me to the top.

I’ve managed a full-time job and full class load throughout school, and although it wasn’t easy, the things I learned and experienced along the way have helped mold my dreams and future endeavors into something I could’ve never dreamed of. Dreams have always played a colossal role in my everyday life; they’re what convinced me every morning to get out of bed. For without dreams, what is there to chase?

As a kid, my dreams consisted of 94 feet of hardwood, two baskets, and my childhood friend named Spalding. Basketball was my life; I played for a nationally ranked team and competed against a lot of guys who play in the NBA today. But as you can tell from the title of this article, that dream did not come to fruition. But basketball taught me a lot more than what happens on the court. It taught me how to be a leader. Those leadership skills brought me to an internship in the financial services industry with Sagicor Life Insurance, a reputable international company that has been around for over 170 years, as a licensed financial advisor. They presented me with an opportunity to run my own business with full financial backing and an opportunity to learn from many different successful professionals. I’ll never forget my first time stepping into the office and seeing all of the different awards and accolades each adviser received, from being million-dollar producers to getting community recognition.

These guys were no joke, which was no help to my overwhelming nerves. Jonathan London, the office’s career development manager, gave me the opportunity to jump start my career by taking me under his wing and giving me unmatched attention and opportunities. The training Jonathan gave me applies not only to the financial field, but also contains many life lessons and tools to be a better person. John Petrucco, our branch manager, has spent 20 years in the industry and started his career under Jordan Belfort, better known as the “Wolf of Wall Street.” Sagicor and John have given me the opportunity to create a business for myself, but without being by myself. I get all the perks of running my own business, but without the risks.

Another opportunity this internship has provided me with is the ability to learn how to make a lot more money than any regular college student. Everyone thinks life insurance is just about death, but that could not be any further from the truth. I’ve watched client after client change their lives by properly investing their capital and developing a detailed plan on how to reach their financial goals. While building my own business and learning from the best, Sagicor gave me the jump start I needed to catapult myself and my financial practice.

Sagicor even sent me to the Revolt Music Conference in Miami, where I was able to network and learn from some of the biggest names in business. I will never forget being able to sit down with P. Diddy and talk to him about my goals and where I’m at today. To hear one of my idols tell me I’m destined for great things and that he expects to see me at the top soon was a dream come true. As if that wasn’t enough, I was put in a high-end tux and placed on the Miami Children’s Hospital Diamond Gala Ball’s red carpet. Sitting at the same table as world renowned artist Romero Britto and other huge names in the Miami area was an amazing honor that I will never forget.

I never went the route of most students, it never suited me. I knew I was destined for greatness and settled for nothing less.

Photo Credit: COURTESY OF J. SILVER

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