I found that the work provided was very engaging, the internship had been impressively adapted to the virtual enviroment. In terms of the work itself, we were given weekly group projects to work on until the Friday were we would give a presentation about the project to the business representatives. Each week we focussed on a different division within technology so I found that the projects all varied hugely and you could see how they were relevent to the particular division we would be looking at.
I felt valued by the other interns, we were all accountable for the work we produced during our projects since one person could not do it all. By the end of the internship we all got to know each other reasonably well which was impressive since we communicated over Zoom calls for the duration. I also felt valued by HR, they really cared about how we were getting on. However, we didn't have much interaction at all with other people from the business.
As summer interns we weren't provided with a manager from a technology team and instead were managed by HR. HR were very easy to get in touch with and were more than happy to provide advice and support when I needed it. They also arranged weekly catch up calls following the presentations to give feedback. It was a shame we didn't have more support from someone within technology though. Although I was given a 'buddy' who was lovely and I spoke with her frequently for guidance throughout the internship.
On a Monday, Wednesday and Friday I was busy since we were with our training company for most of the day. They would give us approriate training for the project and just generally useful training then would split us into our project groups to work on them together. In comparison, on Tuesdays and Thursdays we were self managed, there was a lot of work to be done most of the time so I did find myself being occupied. The business also provided us with overview talks from certain divisions and with recent graduates throughout the internship.
Most of the work we were doing was not essential for the business so it didn't always feel too valuable. I'm sure they can take ideas from what we produced but it didn't feel like we were given much responsibility within the company since the projects were ideas based. However, I did find that we were given the responsibility of managing our own time effectively and being accountable for the work we produced within our teams.
I definitely gained skills from this internship. Since we were required to present our final projects each week my presentation skills have improved greatly. I feel more confident speaking about my work. I also found my confidence increased generally too. It was good being able to talk about a subject at the end of the week and feel comfortable and knowledgable on the subject and able to answer questions around it. Similarly, I hadn't done much group work at university so found this a good opportunity to focus on those skills.
The internship was virtual so over video calls due the current situation. The atmosphere on the calls was good but obviously is always a bit awkward since there are less social queues, especially with lags, and socialising feels a bit more forced. However, everyone was lovely and more than happy to chat, it was also easy to message someone to arrange a coffee catch up over a video call so it was nice to be able to casually speak to others as you would in an office.
The internship was really well organised, I was very impressed with the whole thing. A training provider was used most of the time to help us with the projects and provide us with appropriate training. But HR and the provider always knew what was going on so we never had any issues with timings. We had volunteers from the business happy to help us out and work with us each week. You could tell a lot og thought had gone into the internship as a whole.
As I mentioned previously, our training was mostly given by an external training provider. This allowed the training to be more seamless and appropriately focussed. They would give us both group and individual coaching sessions thoughout the internship to see how we were progressing. I also had weekly catchups with HR where they gave me feedback on my performance and development. They also got feedback from the weekly business volunteers to allow it to be more content specific.
Working from home
At the end of the internship I am having a final catch up with HR to speak about my final feedback, my perfance as a whole and my future prospects within Nomura. It seems that generally the retention rate of interns and placement students to graduates is very high. Personally I look forward to hopefully returning to Nomura as graduate. They have a career framework to follow which demonstratres the career progession from role to role within the company.
Since the internship was virtual obviously socialising with one another was a lot harder. However, I found that during the weeks we would chat quite a lot on our video calls whilst working on our projects. It was nice to have short working breaks whether it was just chats or small online group games. HR also organised virtual welcome drinks and virtual leaving drinks which was a nice idea. These were nice but since we were put in breakout rooms they were sligthly awkward at times.
I was working from home so it was much cheaper than had we been in the office and I had needed to get a flat in London.
There are plenty of societies. A lot of these, mainly the active ones, are of course unable to continue hosting events. However, we have societies such as public speaking whom still host a virtual public speaking event every 4 weeks. This involves a couple of speeches along with evaluations and an impromptu question section - it is a very valuable society. When I joined, within my welcome information was a section regarding ways to get involved with Nomura outside work. They have adapted well to the virtual environment.
Internship (1-4 Months)
7th August 2020