Fishing and Finance
Chad Sentell has been fishing for as long as he can remember. His dad often took him out on lakes and ponds near their home in Whitehouse, Tennessee, just north of Nashville. “Fishing became my passion,” Sentell, now a junior studying finance at the Haslam College of Business, says. “I was on the team at my high school, and I wanted to come to a school where I could compete at the college level.” As a sophomore, he joined the UT Bass Fishing Team and participated in fishing tournaments in Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, Kentucky, and New York, along with several in Tennessee. “It’s really been an awesome experience,” Sentell says. “I’ve made some of my best friends on the team. It’s like being part of a family.”
Last year, Sentell and the team placed third at the ACA National Championship at Lake Murray, South Carolina, and fourth at a Bassmaster Tournament at Smith Lake, Alabama. The team also qualified for the Carhartt Bassmaster College Series National Championship in Waddington, New York. This September, he and his fishing partner qualified for the Bass Pro Shops US Open in Missouri, which has a $1 million prize. The bass tournament is the largest in the nation with about 350 boats.
When he’s not fishing, Sentell enjoys his classes at Haslam and appreciates the college’s friendly atmosphere. “Even though it’s a huge college, you get to know a lot of the people,” he says. “You can’t beat the opportunities and experiences here.” In the spring, he hopes to gain real-life experience with managing an investment portfolio through participating in the Torch Funds at the Masters Investment Learning Center. Next summer, he hopes to find a finance internship with one of the larger US-based fishing companies.
After graduation, Sentell plans to try his hand at being a professional fisherman for a few years. “I’ll see how far that takes me, but if it doesn’t work out, I still want to work in the industry using my degree,” he says. “Ultimately, I’d love to find a way to combine my interests in fishing and finance.”