April 08, 2013
Michael Wolfe ’04TCB knows a thing or two about managing
money – a lot of money.
As Financial Advisor at Merrill Lynch,
he works within the Family Office, assisting families in handling
and maintaining their estates.
“I basically serve as the concierge of all financial services for a
number of wealthy families across the country,” Wolfe explained.
“It’s a really rewarding and oftentimes fun job.”
As a wide-eyed freshman at St. John’s, however, finances were the
furthest thing from Wolfe’s mind. He originally enrolled in the College
of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, eager to delve into the
required science classes and learn the intricacies of the
But during his first semester, he found his interests gravitating
towards an entirely different avenue.
“It was when I was taking classes that first semester that I
realized I was way more fascinated by the business side of the
Pharmaceutical industry,” he noted, “and I was intrigued with
figuring out how pharmacies made their money. That’s when the light
bulb went off and I decided to transfer into St. John’s The
Peter J. Tobin College of Business.”
The decision turned out to be an excellent one, as Wolfe met
professors who forever impacted his life.
“What I found amazing was how much real-world experience our
professors had,” Wolfe said. “It’s easy and fun to learn about the
stock market when one of your Management professors is
Dr. Keith Moore, one of the founders of the trading concept of
‘arbitrage.’ You’re learning the business directly from the
professional world’s leaders.”
But it wasn’t just the education that made his St. John’s
experience so fantastic. Wolfe had the opportunity to live on
campus during the very first year of the Residence Village,
allowing him to make lifelong friends from all across the
“They’re still some of my best friends,” he said. “I’m from Toms
River, NJ, and I was able to meet people from halfway across the
globe. Life on campus has certainly evolved a lot since that
initial year, but it’s cool to say that I was part of the
beginning. I walk around campus today and marvel at how far it’s
Wolfe has certainly remained connected to the St. John’s community
and knows how strong the University’s alumni network can be. As a
student, he attended the Alumni
Insider’s View (AIV)…Day on Wall Street program and met alumni
who helped to mentor him as he transitioned into his professional
career. Now, a decade later, Wolfe wants to leave a mark on today’s
students, attending AIV events as a mentor.
Also, he has invited students to his office to see for themselves
what it’s like to work at Merrill Lynch.
“For me, it’s all about giving back,” Wolfe said. “It’s thanks to
St. John’s and meeting alumni that I was able to carve out this
career for myself, and I’m grateful. Not everyone can say that they
enjoy going to work every morning, but I can, and I hope I can help
current students see that it’s possible for them, too, to realize
their goals. With a St. John’s education, their dreams can become