Meet the Team: Steven Hong

Firm News & EventsPosted on June 26th, 2018No Comments

Written By: Lauren Mireles, FPQPTM

Yeske Buie believes in supporting and fostering education and ingenuity of our youth, and this belief is the underlying inspiration for our vibrant internship program. We find that interns bring novel perspectives, fresh ideas, and specialized strengths and skill sets, all while augmenting our firm’s capacity. Another unique aspect of our program is that it is run completely by the Yeske Buie staff. Interns have access to Dave and Elissa, but the hiring, training and management of the interns is done by the staff. This allows our team to learn essential training and management skills to foster the development of our Assistant Financial Planners, Financial Planning Residents and support staff. For these reasons and more, we find that our internship program is good for the company and for the intern.

This summer, Steven Hong, a rising Junior at the University of California Berkeley, is interning with us in our San Francisco office. Steven supports our Financial Planning Team through a variety of projects – see what he has been working on and how his work is impacting our Clients.

Tell us about your interest in Financial Planning.

First of all, I consider myself completely new to the world of finance and financial planning. My interest in finance was born in my Intro to Finance course, and the more I researched the financial services industry, I found that I had a great interest in financial planning; stories like Dr. Yeske and Elissa Buie’s were particularly inspiring. The part of financial planning that I found of specific interest was the human aspect. At UC Berkeley, I tutor Economics students, and I find it very rewarding to see the results of the work that I have put in with other students. Similarly, I find that this is also the case with the Client-planner relationship in the financial planning profession. In my time at Yeske Buie, I have learned that financial planning is comprehensive, all encompassing, and truly manifests in the lives of the Clients Yeske Buie serves. This is very unique, in my opinion, and I have found that I truly enjoy it.

What do you hope to accomplish during your time at Yeske Buie?

Before starting my internship, I set a goal for myself to make a positive impact on Yeske Buie that spans beyond my three months here. I feel that oftentimes when hiring an Intern, it can be more of a pull on resources than a benefit. I hope to have a net positive effect by not taking up too much time and actually help save some of the financial planners’ time. I feel that there is an opportunity to do this through the projects I am working on to support the financial planners in the work they do for Yeske Buie’s Clients.

Another goal I set for myself is to end the internship with a basic understanding of all the aspects of financial planning and the different kinds of analysis that goes into building a comprehensive financial plan. I feel that the opportunity to sit in on Client meetings can help me achieve this goal as it gives me the chance to be a part of the behind-the-scenes work with Clients and then watch the interactions between the planners and the Clients as the work that was done is applied in the meeting. So far, my time with Yeske Buie has been a great learning experience – as we say at Yeske Buie, Learn Big!

Say more about Learn Big – what about that Yeske Buie Worldview resonates with you?

Learn Big resonates with me because my belief is that education is the gateway to social mobility. I was fortunate enough to have grown up in a middle-class family; I never had to worry about where my next meal was going to come from or not being able to afford the things that I needed to move forward in life. However, this was not the case for my parents, both of which were immigrants. They had to get by with very little and pay their own way through their schooling. I admire them so much because if they had not been so pursuant in furthering their education, they would never have the life they have now. My roommate is also a first-generation college student and I enjoy seeing the opportunity’s he has been given and the experiences he has had because of attending school.

Your parents’ story is inspiring! In what ways may their story have impacted your view of money or financial planning?

One money memory that stands out to me is when my parents let go of our home gardener because they were not happy with the job that was being done. When they did this, I saw it as an opportunity to make money. After my parents agreed to allow me to help with the work, I became paranoid that they would fire me, too, so I drew up a contract and had them sign it. It lived on the fridge after that!

In what ways do you Live Big? 

One of the ways that I Live Big is through my love for volleyball. When I am not working, I enjoy playing indoor volleyball, which I have been playing ever since middle school. At UC Berkeley, I play on an intramural team and throughout both middle and high school, I’ve played on junior varsity, varsity, and club teams. Another way that I aspire to Live Big is through cooking. I’ve grown my passion and abilities for cooking by watching cooking shows and gaining inspiration from them. I enjoy how you can explore different cultures through food. This relates to one of my long-term Live Big goals which is to travel to and explore Istanbul. All through high school, I was very interested in history and Istanbul is of specific interest because it is a very historical city and has several ancient civilizations that run deep in it’s culture; not to mention that it once served as a major crossroad for global trade.

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“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that others won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” ~Marianne Williamson