Jimmy Weng, BA’07, has an ambi­tious plan for his life: See more; do more.

I always want to be on the move,” he explains. “I always want to be learning some­thing new.”

He had the same phi­los­ophy as a North­eastern under­grad­uate majoring in finance and insur­ance. So it was no sur­prise when he took a co-​​op posi­tion with Morgan Stanley—and no sur­prise that the job was based in Hong Kong, one of the world’s great finan­cial hubs.

On co-​​op, Weng pitched busi­ness ideas to Asian hedge-​​fund clients and pro­vided capital-​​raising sup­port to insti­tu­tional investors. After just a few months in, Morgan Stanley offered him a post-​​graduation job as a prime bro­kerage asso­ciate. He quickly accepted, even though it meant defer­ring his studies at Har­vard Busi­ness School for two years (he’ll enroll in its MBA pro­gram this fall).

Not only am I building rela­tion­ships with hedge-​​fund man­agers and regional investors,” Weng says of his stint at Morgan Stanley, “but I’m learning in a smaller team set­ting than if I were working in the United States. The expo­sure to var­ious teams within prime bro­kerage is much wider.”

Global finan­cial prob­lems have taught Weng other lessons, too. “We can’t take on or pro­vide as much leverage as we used to,” he says. “We have to be much more selec­tive in taking on new busi­ness, while making sure our top clients are ade­quately serviced.”

Weng’s Hong Kong expe­ri­ence has accel­er­ated his career devel­op­ment. It’s also given him a greater under­standing of the human condition.

Hong Kong is very fast-​​paced, very vibrant,” Weng says. “It could take ‘the city that never sleeps’ nick­name away from New York City. But there’s still a lot of poverty. Until you live in these sit­u­a­tions, until you really feel it and rec­og­nize the strug­gles of the Hong Kong people, you can’t truly under­stand it.”

Before joining Morgan Stanley, Weng com­pleted co-​​ops at Fidelity Invest­ments, working as a fund accounting ana­lyst, and at Lehman Brothers, working as part of the equity swaps and deriv­a­tives team.

Now, as he enters the next phase of his pro­fes­sional life, he has broader goals, for him­self and for the world. To pre­pare him­self to become a thought leader within the finan­cial industry – per­haps he will return to Mor­ganStan­leysome­time in the future, he says – he’s going to spend the next few months in Bei­jing, researching Chi­nese gov­ern­ment poli­cies and eco­nomic plans, and studying Man­darin at Peking University.

I want to travel and learn as much as I can so I can create oppor­tu­ni­ties,” Weng says. “I want to be the change I want to see in the world.”