Finding your Niche: An Exclusive Finance Interview with Citi Executive Hollie Griego ’00

5 min read

Jorge Espinoza-Gonzalez ’26

Features Editor

Following a Citi recruiting event hosted by the Trinity College Student Investment Fund and the Career and Life Design Center Thursday, Oct. 26, the Tripod interviewed Hollie Griego, the North American Head of Strategy & Platforms for Citi’s Global Wealth Investments and Trinity College Class of 2000. Her evident success in the world of finance is astonishing and undeniable, and her story is noteworthy to not just those who are planning to delve into the financial sector but also all college students alike.

Griego graduated from Trinity in 2000 with a degree in Modern Languages — most specific, Spanish and Italian Literature. After graduating, Griego thought that she would go into the nonprofit or government sector — after all, all of her activities and involvements circulated around these two fields. “I interviewed for multiple fields,” added Griego, “but I think at some point I realized that tnonprofit/government was not for me.”

Griego is a great example that one does not need to pursue a career related to one’s major. “I remember being in junior year and I asked my dad what I should major in and he asked, ‘Well, what are you good at?’ So, I majored in Modern Languages.” Griego stressed the importance of a liberal arts education, emphasizing how it well-rounds a student through the development of crucial skills. “I think a liberal arts education develops critical analytical skills—thinking skills— that you can use at any job.”

Griego also highlighted the role that Trinity played at cultivating her abilities while at her time here. One of the most important ones that Hollie stressed was the ability to network efficiently. “Trinity is a small school,” commented Griego, “and going to a small school facilitates the forging of connections.” Griego mentioned that students often forget that they are making connections, networking, with people that they now call friends — and this can lead to tremendous career advancement. “People will [help] you because your work is good and because they know who you are—they know about you and what you do best.” Family members, emphasized Griego, are also connections. “If there’s people across from you in your dinner table this Thanksgiving,” she added, “a connection is waiting to happen.” Griego also mentioned that a connection “is a two-way street.” She advised that students stay in contact with their network and regularly check in, and emphasized that “you get what you put in.” Griego also added the power of the Bantam Network—a power that many Trinity students have yet to thoroughly grasp. Griego added that when she was interviewing after undergrad, “the power of the trinity network was apparent—somebody knew someone who came to Trinity.” She encourages students to take advantage of such an ample network and to never forget the power of connection.

As the North American Head of Strategy & Platforms for Citi’s Global Wealth Investments, Griego advises that a great skill to develop now is adaptability. “Sometimes, things will get dropped on your lap and you need to plan how to tackle this task.” Her work centers around running strategy and working closely with heads of the Citi wealth division. She utilizes a lot of the skills she learned through majoring in Modern Languages—such as foreign language skills, brainstorming and problem-solving — when communicating with clients, especially those from Latin American countries. Her typical day depends on the time of year as she must balance both shortand long-term tasks and some business quarters require more of one task type than the other. Yet, she can always count on having to prioritize tasks. Griego stressed this as yet another skill that Trinity students should cultivate. By learning to program duties based on relevancy and importance, one can fight procrastination and further efficiency—both in and out of the office.

Griego stressed the importance of doing what you are passionate about. “Find something you enjoy doing because you will be naturally good at it,” added Griego, “and it won’t feel as difficult.” To get to where she is now, Griego took a rather unconventional path. She majored in the humanities and had no early calling towards finance. Yet, she stressed that a liberal arts education builds skills that cannot be gained elsewhere and are quite applicable to a myriad of professions. It all comes down to being quick on your feet, thinking critically, and putting yourself out there. But also isolating what makes you different than everybody else, “find your niche,” added Griego. Knowing what makes you unique and how you can use it to your advantage can open doors and facilitate your career by far more than people give it credit for.

Griego, apart from her official job title, is on numerous initiatives to make Citi and the financial sector a more diverse work environment. She is currently pushing for more leadership roles for women in finance while also aiding in initiatives to incorporate more people of color into the sector. As an alum, Griego takes time to reach out to Trinity as her way to give back, giving back by “creating a network for [current] students like it was created for her.”

Hollie Griego ’00 is an excellent embodiment of how one can undertake a career in finance when determined, hard-working and well educated. Griego is an outstanding example of Trinity graduates who have gone on to establish successful careers in quite challenging career fields. As explored, she has made her mark within one of the world’s most prominent banking and finance companies –namely, Citi. Yet, Griego did not always think that a future in finance would be feasible for her, which truthfully makes her story even grander — as her story echoes the axiom that life is a journey: everchanging, wild and unexpecting; you never know what awaits you in the future.

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