Movies or tv series, coffee or tea, and what would Monique eat if she could only eat one type of food for the rest of her life?
Read till the end to find out the answer to these and many more questions! But first, a brief introduction:
Hi there! My name is Monique Groen. I am 23 years old and have worked at VB Advisory for almost two years. I started working here as a quantitative analyst, primarily on internal projects. After a while, I became a quantitative consultant and began doing projects for clients.
“What is your background?”
In high school, I have always enjoyed mathematics. Once I started looking for a study, I was immediately attracted by Econometrics because of its courses and possibilities for my career path.
After completing my Bachelor’s degree in Econometrics and Operations Research at Tilburg University, I started doing a Master’s degree in Quantitative Finance and Actuarial Science. I already knew I wanted to do the Quantitative Finance master’s when I was only in the second year of my Bachelor’s. I am currently writing my master’s thesis. Once I’ve finished my thesis in October, I will graduate.
“What do you do in your time off?”
I enjoy playing music. I have been playing the accordion since I was eight years old. Since a few years ago, I have also taught myself the piano. Every Monday, I have rehearsals with my orchestra, where I play the accordion.
I also enjoy going out for walks as often as possible, usually during the evenings after work or on the weekends. I also enjoy hanging out with my friends, both my friends from home but also the friends that I made while studying in Tilburg.
“Could you say something about your path towards joining VB Advisory?”
My path toward joining VB Advisory was relatively short. I met VB Advisory at the LED (Landelijke Econometristen Dag) in 2020. At that time, I wasn’t looking for a job, but a few months later, I was in the last phase of my Bachelor’s degree, and I wanted to gain some relevant working experience during my free time. By then, I had also realised that I wanted to gain some experience in the Quantitative Finance field. I decided to apply at VB Advisory, and they hired me!
“What kind of projects have you done at VB Advisory?”
I have been doing quite a few projects so far. The first project that I worked on was for the Johan Cruyff Foundation. In this project, I was involved in developing a dashboard that would give more insight into their data. I also developed the backend code of the EzRider tool, which is a transport tool that finds the shortest route between multiple locations.
Currently, I am working on a project for Municipality Eindhoven. For them, I am creating an interactive RShiny dashboard. The dashboard can be used to get more insight into the current situation in Eindhoven regarding criminality among children up to 23 years old. Since the dashboard is interactive, it is possible to get an overview of the situation in either the city in general or a specific area or neighbourhood. Information on the incidents that have taken place in the past few years, as well as information on the suspects, is available. This makes it possible to get more insight into the situation in Eindhoven and its neighbourhoods.
Currently, I am also researching longevity basis risk. I will write about the construction of a new three-population mortality model that also includes the modelling of the mortality of socioeconomic subgroups. My research also looks into quantifying longevity basis risk in case the new model is used. This mortality model will be used as a part of the quant tooling on an exchange platform.
“Why did you choose VB Advisory?”
First off, I was attracted by the projects. I enjoy being able to do different projects at the same time. We have a lot of different kinds of projects, so there is a large variety of them. Moreover, the fact that VB Advisory was still a relatively small company also attracted me. Since I did not have any real experience besides my degree, I knew that I would enjoy the close contact with my colleagues that a small firm offers.
“What sets VB Advisory apart?”
I think that what sets VB Advisory apart from other companies is that I feel that we all belong to one team that works together to reach our goals. Everyone is always willing to help one another, even when they’re not working on the same project.
Moreover, I know everyone is setting the best goals possible, and everyone is working very hard at the client to achieve these goals. Finally, there is a significant focus on personal development within VB Advisory, which I also find very important.
“What’s your ideal Sunday?”
One thing that my ideal Sunday cannot miss is sleeping in without setting my alarm. I enjoy waking up alone on Sunday and sleeping for as long as possible. Afterwards, I would visit my grandparents or hang out with my friends. Watching Formula 1 with my father to see Max Verstappen race to victory would complete my ideal Sunday.
Dilemmas with Monique…
“Coffee or tea?”
It depends. I enjoy drinking coffee in the morning, but I usually switch to drinking a lot of tea in the afternoon.
“Movies or series?”
Hard question! I have a few all-time favourite movies that I could watch again and again, so I would say movies.
“Active holiday or beach holiday?”
I enjoy both, but I have grown used to going to the beach in the southern part of France for two weeks every year so I would prefer a beach holiday.
“Pasta or pizza?”
If I could eat only one type of food for the rest of my life, it would be pasta!
“Not a day without?”
My cat, Spoeky. He’s six years old, and I enjoy being around and playing with him.