Samuel Hartzmark

Assistant Professor of Finance, Booth School of Business, University of Chicago
Ph.D. in Finance and Business Economics
Graduated in 2014

As a Ph.D. candidate in finance and business economics at USC Marshall, Samuel Hartzmark quickly made his mark. Collaborating with renowned Marshall faculty – including financial economist David Solomon and trading and investment management expert Lawrence Harris – Hartzmark distinguished himself with scholarship that broke new ground on issues ranging from stock market anomalies to interest rates and uncertainty.

Marshall was a good fit for Hartzmark on a number of fronts. “The school has a great finance group that is constantly getting better, which was a big part of it,” he says. “I was also able to finish in four years, whereas for most people in the field, it takes about six.”

In the final analysis, though, it was the human resources that convinced him to attend. “The people were the most valuable aspect of the program, hands down,” Hartzmark says. “Ultimately, the biggest thing with any Ph.D. program is the quality of the individual faculty you work with.” For Hartzmark, those faculty included Wayne Ferson, [holder of the Ivadelle and Theodore Johnson Chair in Banking and Finance and professor of finance and business economics], widely considered a leading expert on asset pricing. “I was fortunate to have Wayne as my adviser, and it was an incredible experience to get to work with him,” he says.

Hartzmark, who upon graduating accepted a position as assistant professor of finance at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, says his relationships paid immediate dividends. For him, having recommendations from highly regarded faculty made all the difference. “USC Marshall is a dynamic place on the upswing, and the connections I made there enabled me to land one of the best jobs in the market,” he says.

At USC, Hartzmark also leveraged the school’s less academic resources. “I played IM basketball with the Marshall Ph.D. student team, and I played squash with some of the faculty,” he says. In addition, he soaked up the famous Trojan spirit as a season ticket holder to football games. “USC has a good community, and the campus is great,” he says. “Come January in Chicago, I definitely miss sitting outside and doing work!”

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