Rock the Street Wall Street advocates for a more equitable future in finance


Ana López del Punta '23

Sacred Heart Greenwich now offers its Upper School students the opportunity to explore finance by participating in Rock the Street, Wall Street.

Twenty six Upper School students participate in Rock the Street, Wall Street (RTSWS), an international program dedicated to achieving gender and racial equity in the field of finance.  To apply their newfound knowledge of the stock and capital markets to real-life situations, students problem-solved with female employees from Forester Capital, a financial consultant located in Stamford, Connecticut, November 16.  Mrs. Kerry Bader, Director of Mission Integration, Director of Upper School Community Service and Campus Ministry, and Upper School Theology Teacher, and senior Kourtney Ulmer, Student Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the program at Sacred Heart Greenwich, remarked that RTSWS helps students envision a career in finance by conversing with successful female financial consultants. 

In the United States (US) and Western Europe, white women earn 79 cents, Black women earn 63 cents, and Latinas earn 54 cents for every $1 white men obtain, according to  One of the most male-dominated industries in the US is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), according to  In finance, women comprise only 6 percent of senior positions at the most accomplished financial institutions, according to quantic.eduAcknowledging this gender wage gap and lack of female representation, RTSWS encourages girls to pursue careers in STEM fields, especially in mathematics.  This program is committed to forming future female leaders by instilling ambition and perseverance in girls, according to

Employees from Forester Capital take students on a tour of their premises.  Courtesy of Miss Karen Panarella

To provide Upper School students with more opportunities to explore finance, Mrs. Bader and Miss Karen Panarella, Assistant Head of Upper School, applied for Sacred Heart to be a RTSWS cohort.  Sacred Heart is now one of 62 high schools in the US, the United Kingdom, and Canada that engage in this program, according to  Mrs. Bader commented that it is vital for students at an all-girls school to interact with successful women in finance so that they feel more confident in exploring this career in college. 

“We thought it would be a great opportunity for our students to see women in finance as leaders,” Mrs. Bader.  “RTSWS looks for women leaders within financial institutions and then they come and work a curriculum for young girls so that they can see that there is a pathway to this career in a heavily male-dominated industry.  A lot of females opt out of this career because they feel that there is not a lot of representation.” 

Students meet every Wednesday during the GOALS period to discuss saving strategies, budgeting, and the stock market.  Female employees from Forester Capital, the sponsoring firm for the Sacred Heart cohort, come to every session to teach the students.  They help students apply their learning to scenarios in which women endeavor to fulfill a savings plan or manage their wages. 

Students listen to speeches from female employees of Forester Capital.  Courtesy of Miss Karen Panarella

To better understand financial consultants’ work, students participated in a field trip to Forester Capital’s office in Stamford yesterday.  Students received a tour of the facilities and experienced how financial consultants interact with a stock-exchange floor.  Female leaders of this firm also discussed different career paths within finance that students can pursue.

Kourtney decided to join RTSWS to learn about women’s challenges in pursuing a career related to mathematics.  She believes that, regardless of students’ academic interests, all Sacred Heart girls would benefit from engaging in this program because it equips participants with self-confidence and skills to manage their financial affairs. 

“I think that it is important especially for our school to participate in this program because we are an all-girls school,” Kourtney said.  “I think this program is important because you can learn not only about careers in finance, but also about investing, stocks, and savings accounts that are good for your own personal finance as an adult.”

Featured Image by Ana López del Punta ’23