Brian Bros had always dreamed of becoming a ’Cane. As a child, he would frequently attend Miami Hurricanes sporting events with his family and watch the games on television as often as he could.
Today Bros is thrilled to be in his second year at the University of Miami, eager to contribute positively to his campus community.
“It’s like a dream come true to be here,” said Bros, a Florida native who is double major in finance and legal studies with minors in political science and sport administration. The Foote Fellow Honors Program made his decision to attend the University an easy one as it allowed him to dive into his major courses right away. Additionally, he was awarded the Marta S. and L. Austin Weeks Endowed Scholarship which is given to outstanding high school seniors with exceptional academic records.
Bros is dedicated to making a positive difference on campus—which has already provided him with so much, including newfound confidence, new friendships, and additional responsibilities. Currently Bros is a resident assistant for students living in Stanford Residential College; a member of Delta Sigma Pi, a co-ed professional fraternity; and vice president of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA), whose mission is to engage, empower, and educate diverse business leaders.
“Last year, there was an initiative to bring the organization back and to make it bigger,” Bros said of the NABA. “After being recommended by my mentor, professor Mark Shapiro, the president of the club reached out to me, asking if I could take on this role. I did some research on the organization, and I saw what their mission was, and I felt it would be an honor to bring NABA back on campus.”
NABA has organized a diverse range of events to serve students who are passionate about business and finance. From Building Black Wealth: Credit and Investing 101 to a networking workshop featuring Shapiro, the club is making a meaningful impact as Bros hoped.
“Brian is a terrific student,” said Shapiro. “He’s thoroughly engaged, energetic, and a good critical thinker. Make no mistake—Brian is the real deal, and he’s going to be great at whatever he ultimately decides to do into the future and I hope that’s law.”
Bros and his peers hosted an event last semester that featured University alumni who work at J.P. Morgan Private Bank, including Mandell Smith, vice president; Dewayne Washington II, senior associate; and Jordan Crenshaw, analyst. The event emphasized the value of internships, what the job of banker or advisor is like, and provided valuable insights and inspiration for the chapter’s members.
“Being a part of this club is more than I envisioned, honestly,” said Bros. Membership of the club has grown from 30 to 40 members to around 70 to 80 since last year. “Things have been running smoothly and we’ve had a lot of success. We’ve brought speakers from Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors, Deloitte, and other firms to speak with us and it’s been inspirational.”
As Bros continues to pursue his bachelor’s degree, he’s using each course to gain insight into his future industry. Shapiro’s business law course particularly stood out.
“While all my friends were dreading going to our business law class, it turned out to be a breakthrough class for me,” said Bros, who was driven to change his career aspirations from investment banking to business law. “I loved going to the class each time and there was never a stressful day for me—I was excited to be there. It was eye-opening.”
“It always makes me happy to hear that a student connected with the course,” said Shapiro. “At its core, law emphasizes a critical thinking, logic, and communication skill set. Students who share that skill set will frequently be challenged and excited by the content. Brian always participated in class, and always showed a genuine interest in the material and the thought process for solving legal issues.”
Leaving a lasting impression at the University is foremost on Bros’ mind as he balances his course schedule and extracurricular activities. He looks forward to stepping into new roles as his time progresses.
“In each role, I have had the amazing opportunity to meet people from all walks of life and learn something new from others. I am happy to be a ‘Cane,” Bros said.