Financial wizard: Law student has business background with S.E.C.

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By Sheila Pursglove
Legal News

Matthew Snyder entered undergrad at Florida’s Stetson University knowing his future plans included law school—and chose an undecided designation to explore different majors. An “Introduction to Business Administration” course immediately interested him because of its various specialties.

“When we covered market theory and corporate finance briefly in the course, I was hooked,” he says.

Transferring to the Business School in his senior year and declaring a finance major, Snyder was selected for the Roland George Investments Program, a national award-winning student-directed portfolio which has grown to more than $5 million.

“Analyzing the companies, investment vehicles and economic indicators while investing real money in the markets captivated me and I decided to delay my law school applications and apply for several jobs in the Central Florida area despite the Great Recession when I graduated in May 2009,” he says.

Landing an operational role at BNY Mellon | Pershing, Snyder—who went on to earn an MBA by taking evening classes while working full-time —participated in a Management Training Program, then served as vice president and senior account manager.

Snyder’s time working with Pershing attorneys on client related issues, as well as with the compliance team, once again piqued his interest in pursuing a law degree.

“I admired their ability to understand the rules and regulations of the industry and ability to communicate them,” he says.

He adds that leaving BNY Mellon | Pershing after a little over 11 years was one of the hardest decisions he has ever had to make.

In late 2019, Snyder applied to law schools; picking Detroit Mercy Law as the best fit, he has enjoyed unwavering support from faculty and administration, especially during the challenges presented by the pandemic.

His interest in Finance and Securities Laws and Regulations led him to remotely intern with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in the Division of Examinations.

“I’ve really enjoyed the work, using the legal writing and research skills I acquired over the academic year and diving deeper into securities regulations using my general knowledge of the markets,” he says.

“I was able to quickly understand the work of the department and almost immediately started participating and performing the work required for examinations that the SEC performs on SROs—Self-Regulatory Organizations—including document review, developing inquiries and interviews, and documenting exam findings. “While the experience is remote, I’ve been able to network to learn about every division within the SEC and it’s been interesting to learn more about its structure and how it regulates the markets.”

His goal at Detroit Mercy Law is to build on his knowledge of securities laws and regulations along with exploring related areas of interest like general Business/Corporate Law, Corporate Governance, and Estates and Trusts; but he also is open to other interests.

Snyder is open to different opportunities after graduation including working for a law firm, clerking for a judge, or as in-house counsel for a corporation. 

“Ultimately, I’ve enjoyed my time working at the SEC so I could see working again for them someday down the road,” he says. “Being able to help influence policies that don’t hinder financial advice companies but still protect investors would be a worthwhile goal.”

Snyder became secretary of the school’s OutLaws organization in May, and while the pandemic nixed some in-person events, he hopes to restart these, and to have prominent LGBTQ+ lawyers visit as guest speakers.

A native of Orlando, Snyder has made Royal Oak home for three years, with his fiancé Stephen Allegro, D.O., and with Farrah and Gunnar, 6-year-old mixed breed rescues.

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