1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I really enjoyed my internship. It was interesting, dynamic and it was a brilliant way to learn so much about regulation, the world of finance and just how a large organisation functions in general. I would consider my internship as an invaluable starting point of my career and I'm really looking forward to where it leads me in the future.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Without a doubt one of the best things about my internship at the FCA was that I felt that I was treated as a colleague not just an intern. The people in my team and everyone who I met within the wider FCA valued my contribution to the work streams that I was involved in.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I had the opportunity to get all the support or guidance I would ever need at every step of the way. One of my big anxieties coming into the internship was that I wouldn't be able to keep up in the world of finance since I did not have a background in finance myself. That was never the case and principally the reason for that was because management and everyone else at the FCA was more than willing to invest their time in helping you with your work or just offering their advice.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I was always kept busy day-to-day. I was given several work streams to work on at the same time so that I had to priorities what needed to be done by the deadlines I was given, but it equally meant that I always had something to do - whether that be long term projects or little administrative tasks.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Perhaps it's hard to quantify how much responsibility I was actually given, but I think the important thing is that I felt like I was given a lot of responsibility and the work that I was completing was important. As one example I co-wrote and presented a presentation to around 30 colleagues on one of my work streams, where I was expected to know that specific area in enough detail to be able to explain everything eloquently.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I think the professional skills I have gained over the course of my internship will be incredibly useful going forward, especially in my career going forward beyond university. In general I would say that my internship at the FCA has made me more confident, more well-rounded and more productive as a person.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Relaxed and collaborative is the best way to describe it. The FCA has a completely open office plan with hot-desking so you get the opportunity to quickly get to know all your colleagues and how they fit into their larger organisation. Everyone is always only ever a call or a walk away and more than happy to be approached with any questions.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Sports and Social Club
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I think the future employment prospects within the organisation are very appealing. Spending three months here has made it very clear that the opportunities for upward career progression are plentiful, and the FCA and everyone who works at the FCA are more than willing to invest in its employees to facilitate that development.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
This was a good perk of the FCA's internship programme. My cohort had approximately 30 interns and the healthy working hours at the FCA meant that we had the opportunity to socialise after work and become good friends. A good programme of intern events within the internship programme also helped us all get to know each other and socialise.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The FCA's office is only a 6 minute train journey from central London so there are lots of opportunities to go clubbing. Lots of interns in my cohort used to arrange nights out on Fridays or Saturdays most weekends. The FCA is also surrounded by several pubs and bars which are also a great place to go with friends after work.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Absolutely. The FCA sends around a regular email advertising not only all the various clubs and activities that the FCA offers within the organisation but also all the events that are happening around the local area that FCA employees might be interested in - including a lot of subsidised tickets and offers!