Darius Grinvaldas is a former student of Finance and Insurance Mathematics at the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics (VU MIF), Vilnius University. We talked about work, studies and the financial sector with VU alumnus, who is now the head of the Risk Management Division of Danske Bank A / S in Lithuania.
Promising studies with the most talented students
“I started studying VU MIF finance and insurance mathematics in 2004. It was a really special year for Lithuania, because we became members of the EU. During that period, the rapid and very promising change and growth of the Lithuanian financial sector was already underway. Scandinavian banks and other international financial companies have started to develop and strengthen their organizations in Lithuania, and there was a significant supply of very interesting and attractive job offers,” recalls D. Grinvaldas.
According to the alumnus, not only the chosen field of science was inspiring and promising, but also the surrounding environment: “The specialty of Financial and Insurance Mathematics was almost the most popular (or one of the most popular) study programs. It was appealing to join the most talented and competitive students, who have very bright and promising prospects in the labor market” says the VU MIF alumnus.
Recalling his studies, Grinvaldas says he had very strict but precisely objective profesors. Students ’knowledge was valued with a great deal of responsibility and respect for the learning process. All were judged absolutely objectively and without any preconceptions or sympathies.
“VU MIF has formed a strong approach to the independent learning process. Learning to learn interesting and challenging subjects on your own creates an invaluable skill for a professional career, where development and change are a very natural part of everyday life,” he says.
Communication is also needed at work
As the head of the Risk Management Division of A / S in Lithuania, D. Grinvaldas says that daily work offers many different opportunities, but also poses challenges.
“I have the opportunity to be a leader for team leaders and risk management specialists who develop mathematical credit risk management models. Leadership is a continuous flow of cooperation in a large team, which requires very strong communication and teamwork skills, anticipation of the development of work situations, coordination of employees' interests and attitudes. This requires the use of emotional intelligence every day, listening very strongly and seeing the potential of employees' ideas, unleashing their creativity, encouraging them to take responsibility for the proposed solutions to tasks.
According to the VU alumnus, after university studies, he had to patiently learn these things and understand them independently: “This sometimes happened through many professional mistakes and failures. I believe that this learning is still going on process, it is a really big, but at the same time very interesting challenge, the complexity of which is incomparable with any technical credit risk task,” D. Grinvaldas shares his experience.
The connection with the university was not interrupted
Darius also maintains contact with the university, and is happy to have the opportunity to invite a group of trainees to the Danske Bank Group's risk management unit in Lithuania every year. Last summer, he had the opportunity to attend and listen to bachelor’s thesis defense presentations, which left a very positive impression.
Also, for several years in a row, Danske Bank has been the general sponsor of the Lithuanian Young Mathematicians' Meeting:
"Our organization employs a very large group of VU MIF mathematics graduates and still studying students from bachelor's to doctoral students, as well as two very cool lecturers combine work at university and a bank."
For future students, D. Grinvaldas wishes to enjoy studies, to cooperate, to be active and open to innovations.
“Try to perform as many tasks as possible during your studies, helping each other together, teaching each other and cooperating as closely as possible. I really appreciate and often repeat to my students working in the team prof. habil. dr. V. Paulauskas told us during the lecture that "You will have the whole time of your career to acquire practical knowledge and experience, but what we are trying to learn in the auditorium at the moment, you will not have the opportunity to learn so easily," says VU alumnus D. Grinvaldas.