Courtney Cleary graduated from the Mount in 2016 with a double major in Criminal Justice and French. During her time as a student, she found a passion for criminal investigation and analysis, and upon graduation she applied to several government and private sector jobs that involved these interests. In July, Cleary was hired as a fraud analyst at the Standard Charter Bank, an international bank located in Newark, New Jersey.
As a fraud analyst, Cleary works in the investigation department, where her main responsibility includes working as a part of an investigation team. Her job is to check suspicious activity reports to ensure that they have the correct information before they are filed to various governmental agencies to prevent crime and combat fraud. She feels very lucky and grateful for her job; she finds it extremely rewarding and knows it is going to set her up for a great future.
When she was a junior, Cleary became involved in the Mount’s Criminal Justice department and worked with Professor Joseph Vince. She never thought that she would end up working in a bank with a Criminal Justice degree, but she believes that the Mount set her up to be successful in her career.
Her job as a fraud analyst is challenging, but it allows her to use the skills she gained as a student as the Mount to uncover illegal financial crimes all over the world. Her courses in criminal justice and intelligence definitely prepared her for this job, but her ability to interpret date beyond simple statistics has enabled her to excel in her position.
One of the classes Cleary found extremely helpful for her job is Professor Vince’s Intelligence course, which taught her to pay attention to detail and more about crime reporting. Cleary noted that all of the criminal justice courses the Mount has to offer are great and the emphasis on presenting research projects has helped her to thrive.
Along with the course content, Cleary believes that class sizes also helped prepare her for the future. She advises students to “express yourself and your opinions,” while they are in class, and to take advantage of the opportunity to get closer to professors.
“One thing the Mount is good at is helping people,” Cleary says, and getting to know our renowned professors is a great way to ensure success in the future.
Another suggestion Cleary has for students is to take advantage of networking. “Students don’t understand the importance of networking,” she said. She noted that it’s important to build up a network of potential contacts, because even things outside of your major can pertain to you. Cleary believes that other tools for success include utilizing the resources the Career Center has to offer, especially career fairs.
Her last piece of advice to students was specifically for the seniors, reminding them to just have fun. “You’ll have work forever, but you won’t be able to go to Ott’s every Wednesday night with friends. A job will come, but you won’t have the fun of the Mount forever.”
Photo Courtesy Courtney Cleary