BeBerkadia Intern Spotlight: Ben Petrulis

June 29, 2023

At Berkadia, our success is built upon the talent and hard work of a broad, diversely skilled team. From analysts to loan closing specialists to managing directors each of our people brings a unique background, perspective and expertise. Their work allows Berkadia to remain a leader in the commercial real estate industry.

Today, we’re shining the spotlight on Ben Petrulis, a mortgage banking intern in the Philadelphia office, to learn more about his internship at Berkadia, what stood out about Berkadia when interviewing, and what he has learned about himself and his future career while interning at Berkadia.

Can you tell us about yourself and describe your internship at Berkadia so far?

I currently attend Pennsylvania State University, majoring in Finance in the Smeal College of Business. TJ Piper, a Director on the mortgage banking team in Philadelphia, introduced me to Berkadia. So far, my internship here at Berkadia has been a great experience. Everyone here in the Philadelphia office has been very welcoming and kind. When I started my internship, I had limited knowledge about commercial real estate, but I’ve already learned so much about the CRE industry as a whole and Berkadia’s services and capabilities. Furthermore, I have greater knowledge of the technical skills needed to thrive as a mortgage banker.

If you’ve had other internships, how does Berkadia’s internship program differ? What stood out about Berkadia when you were interviewing for your role?

I have had one other internship in the past and my time at Berkadia has already exceeded many of my expectations. In the short time I have been interning here, I have been able to join team calls, work alongside the mortgage banking analysts, learn about Berkadia’s research tools, and attend virtual programming from many CRE organizations. I have gained useful knowledge from these learning opportunities and am eager to continue learning about the industry throughout my internship.

When I interviewed with Berkadia, the part that stood out to me the most was that I would get hands-on experience working with excel models and other analytical tools. This really excited me because it would allow me to get real world experience in a professional setting.

Were you always interested in CRE? If not, how did you get into CRE?

I decided to major in finance at Penn State because it has always been interesting to me. I wasn’t sure which route to take within finance, given there are so many different industries I could go into. Real estate has always been of interest, so I seized the opportunity when given the chance to work in a financial role as an intern on Berkadia’s Mortgage Banking team.

What advice would you have for students looking to get involved in CRE and landing an internship at Berkadia?

The advice I would give to someone looking to get into commercial real estate would be to leverage your network to meet with as many people as you can in the real estate industry. Building connections is a great way to get into the CRE space and meeting with professionals across the industry allows you to learn more about what career is best for you! Having a basic understanding of Berkadia’s role in the industry as well as an understanding of how loans work is very important. Getting involved in organizations at school is very beneficial as well. At Penn State, I joined Leveraged Lion Capital (the nation’s first student-run debt portfolio) and much of what I’ve learned in the organization about accounting, modeling, markets, and valuations has been transferred to this internship.

What has your internship at Berkadia taught you about your future career or yourself?

Something that this internship has taught me is there is so much to learn about the commercial real estate industry and that I love collaborating with other passionate, like-minded people. When I hear new terminology or information for the first time it can be confusing, but I have enjoyed being able to research, ask questions, and understand more about all that Berkadia has to offer and the intricacies of the market. When people tell you that you have to be a lifelong learner – it’s true. Also, it’s clear that Berkadia’s value that “We Love Our Jobs” is true in the workplace. Everyone enjoys the work that they do, and when they do, it makes the job much easier for everyone else!

– Ben Petrulis, Intern-Mortgage Banking

Explore our wide range of commercial real estate jobs at Berkadia.