A Penn State Abington fall 2020 graduate has secured his first professional position at Vanguard, the global investment management company.
Mohammed Nijim, the first in his family to graduate from college, was a business major with a concentration in financial services and a minor in finance, earning a 3.6 grade-point average.
His interest in working for Vanguard dates back several years. Nijim made it a practice to connect with the firm’s representatives at the semiannual Career Expo, staged by the campus Center for Career and Professional Development. He also networked with friends who work there.
“I had another offer from a different company, but when Vanguard offered me the job, I took it. I had been wanting to work with Vanguard from a young age,” he said.
Nijim will begin his role as a client relationship associate for Vanguard in February. Prior to his start date, he will be studying for required securities licensing examinations, which will keep him busy as he was during his college career.
“I loaded up on classes each semester to graduate a semester early. Some semesters I took two extra classes. It wasn’t easy, but it’s manageable if you create your own system,” he said.
Nijim credits his time as a soccer-playing student athlete with helping him achieve his goals.
“Balancing sports taught me to manage my schedule from young age. It taught me to manage everything I do. If it wasn’t for sports, I would be a different man today,” he said.
"Abington shaped me into who I am today."
-- Mohammed Nijim, Class of 2020
After practice and classes, Nijim interned on campus, volunteered off campus, and served as a student leader. He worked in the office of Student Engagement and Leadership (SEAL) as a marketing intern/lead student associate.
“Mohammad committed his time and effort in leadership roles in service to other students. Over the last two-plus years, I have seen the impact he made to keep students engaged,” Frank Stern, coordinator for SEAL, said.
As president and treasurer of the campus Muslim Student Association (MSA), Nijim organized events and weekly meetings and led the group in prayer in addition to overseeing its finances.
“I learned a lot of managerial skills working with MSA,” he said.
The club’s adviser Ola El-Rashiedy, assistant teaching professor of chemistry, became a mentor to Nijim.
“Dr. Ola was the mother of the club. She took care of us and kept us together. We are like a little family. I would talk to her about what to do to improve the club,” he said.
Looking back at his accomplishments, Nijim realized how his Abington experience changed him.
“I developed a deep professionalism. I was always a communicator, and some people thought I was a grad student,” he said. ““At first, I just wanted to play soccer in college. Now, looking at myself three and half years later, and I was offered two different jobs, I have a confidence I didn’t have back then. Abington shaped me into who I am today.”
About Penn State Abington
Penn State Abington provides an affordable, accessible, and high-impact education resulting in the success of a diverse student body. It is committed to student success through innovative approaches to 21st-century, public higher education within a world-class research university. With about 3,700 students, Penn State Abington is a residential campus that offers baccalaureate degrees in 21 majors, undergraduate research, the Schreyer honors program, NCAA Division III athletics, and more.