1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Really enjoyed the internship.
I was in the investments division. My specific team was extremely welcoming; everyone was happy to have a chat about themselves and their career; I was also invited to plenty of external meetings with team members I did not even directly work with on a daily basis.
Overall, great internship.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I was given a couple of main projects (and I took on some additional responsibility too). These main projects were taken very seriously, I felt. By the time I had finished my projects - which were analytical pieces - my work was really valued by the team; we had a meeting to discuss the work and lots of people attended and took a real interest.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I was assigned a line manager and a buddy; both of whom were very accommodating. I regularly had feedback coffees with my buddy and my line manager always made sure I had work to do and was meeting new people.
I also forged some great relationships with colleagues/graduates in my team (and outwith) who had no direct responsibility for working with an intern. Thus, I definitely felt a culture of development and empathy.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I was assigned plenty of work and took on additional work to show a bit of proactivity, which made sure I was always busy past week 3ish.
First two weeks of the internship were quieter which is good as I used this time to meet people and get accustomed with the team and what we do.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
As an intern, I was pleased with my responsibility levels. I was allowed to attend external meetings with equity research analysts and ask questions. I got tasked with writing a stock note and was even allowed to organise a meeting with a Director of Investor Relations.
Overall, I felt like I was given a good level of responsibility, without feeling like I was out of my depth.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I learned a great deal of industry knowledge and certain technical skills with my team. This has been massively useful in allowing me to understand what I like/don't like and hence, it has helped refine my career motivations.
Degree studies have fairly strict syllabuses so it's difficult to attain relevant knowledge/skills through an internship. Nevertheless, after comparing this internship in asset management to a previous internship in commercial banking, I certainly learnt a lot more here.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Quite quiet, a lot of fund managers/analysts spend a great deal of time reading and analysing information. Yet, there was also a very open culture. I felt perfectly comfortable approaching people at their desks so long as I was not interrupting.
Overall, quite quiet but very friendly.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
I was given a project on day one and then after setting some goals with my manager, we organised a couple more objectives and projects.
I may have gotten lucky with my line manager, but I certainly felt that my day-to-day work was well structured.
More so, the HR team are great - they organise more or less weekly activities for all the interns to get involved in. This (coupled with the fact a lot of the interns live together) helped create a great sense of community.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
It's hard to have a lot of formal training throughout a summer internship. However, I had to complete a lot of mandatory online training (I don't know if this was exclusive to investments interns, however).
Apart from this, we received formal Excel training which was good but fairly basic. Beyond this, a lot of the training and development opportunities are there for you to take; just get involved with as many meetings as possible and ask plenty of (sensible) questions. My team taught me loads whenever I just asked a question.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Above 25 days holiday
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Great - I was offered a graduate role, which I plan on taking.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Yes - team drinks every couple of weeks and the interns were always keen to get involved with social stuff.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Fine - Edinburgh prices are Edinburgh prices.
The firm helps with rent if you need to relocate, however. This is a great advantage of the internship.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Depends if you like Edinburgh nightlife.
A lot of great bars near the office.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
I don't know to be honest. I am sure I heard of sports teams but over a summer internship, it wasn't something I planned on getting involved in.