Logic would tell you that for most people, music and finance don’t necessarily go together like peanut butter and jelly. But Ariel Bauerlein is here to prove that she’s not like most people—and that musicians can do math!
As a former Music major at Buffalo State University, Ariel chose not to continue her career as a cellist upon graduating from college. Instead, she had an inkling to pursue a path in the financial services sector. After beginning her career as a relationship banker at a local bank, Ariel spent time cutting her teeth in client relationship management before joining the team at Sandhill. Now, three-and-a-half years later, Ariel has become a leader in our Client Service division and a rising star at our firm.
Dive into this “Sandhill Story” to learn more about Ariel’s life adventures prior to joining the Sandhill family, her penchant for providing exceptional service to her clients, and her passions outside of the office.
Originally dating back to high school, a career in finance was never really in the cards for me. I actually wanted to go to college and major in history. I’ve always been a history nerd—I’m particularly interested in British history—and I had a dream of becoming a museum curator one day. But my dad talked me out of that career path and urged me to reconsider my options when it came to my major. So I chose to pursue my undergraduate degree in music, which was another one of my biggest passions at the time.
Looking back on my childhood, my parents—who were not big musical people themselves—really emphasized that my siblings and I take up an instrument. I’ve played the cello since I was four years old and also learned how to play the piano at a young age. My mom and dad knew that mastering how to play an instrument would teach us an awful lot about discipline and work ethic. That’s why taking up a music major in college felt like somewhat of a natural decision for me.
I’ve always been someone who has taken managing my finances pretty seriously. I consider myself to be an analytical person who loves math and enjoys solving problems, but I hadn’t had much exposure to the financial services industry… until I started working part-time at a local supermarket in college. That’s when I was approached by a bank manager who operated a local bank branch within the grocery store. He talked to me about the possibility of joining his team as a relationship banker because he thought my skill set would make me a strong fit for the role. So I took him up on the offer. I’m so glad I did—because that’s when I knew I had found my calling and wanted to start a career in the financial services sector.
I became part of the Sandhill team in March 2020, just days before the world shut down during the pandemic. The transition from relationship banker at a bank to Client Service Associate at an investment management firm seemed like a natural transition for me. And aside from Covid lockdowns that forced us to work from home for a short time, it was an awesome transition. Tina Hassler, who was working as Director of Client Service at the time, was such a big help in bringing me up to speed on our internal processes and procedures. She and I spent countless hours going through training sessions. Her guidance (and patience) helped me learn so much in just a few short months!
Since joining the team at Sandhill, it’s become so apparent to me that our office environment is one that I truly thrive in. Company leadership is always receptive to new ideas because they’re always searching for ways to improve our firm as a whole. Personally, I’ve grown so appreciative of our uplifting and supportive culture, especially on our Client Service team. Trisha Allsop does a great job of being cognizant of each team member’s needs and making sure that everyone has the resources they need to succeed. We’re all respectful of one another, we work hard together, and most importantly, we genuinely care about each other.
When I’m not at work, you can often find me playing in recreational volleyball leagues around Buffalo with my friends. Even though they’re called “recreational” leagues, we’re a competitive bunch and take our games very seriously! At home, I love to bake. Cookies, cakes, macaroons… you name it, I’ll make them! And even though I’m no longer going to college for music, I still keep up with practicing the cello by playing in local summer weddings with my sister, who plays the viola. The two of us form a duet to play classical tunes before and during the ceremonies. These weddings help make sure I don’t lose my musical touch!
To discover more about Ariel, visit her team bio. You can also view her LinkedIn profile.
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