The virtual experience exceeded all my expectations. Not only was it jam-packed and engaging, but I also feel as though I still received the most insightful and valuable week. Working with fellow peers really gave us a chance to get to know each other and start working as a team. This was extremely enjoyable and although perhaps more challenging to build relationships virtually, we managed to overcome this and still produce some great work in a great atmosphere.
The firm really valued our time. The student recruitment team were extremely friendly and always went above and beyond to sort any issues or offer help and advice. The case study that we did allowed us to gain some really useful feedback that I know I will take forward and use in my work in the future. Furthermore, all of the EY colleagues were so happy to talk to us interns and share their expertise which made us feel very welcome and valued.
The student recruitment team were excellent, whether that be with technical issues, general internship queries or even personal queries. The schedule for the week was extremely well set out and there was not one moment in the week that I didn't know what I was doing or felt lost. This great level of explanation and guidance was balanced with encouragement to have a go and try things out for ourselves which I think was useful for personal growth.
Every single day was jam-packed with a range of different activities. Not one day was ever the same which made the week very dynamic and exciting. On a daily basis we listened to speakers, interacted in q&a sessions and also had insightful learning sessions. I would say that often sessions ended before their allotted time however this never seemed to be a great issue as there was always an abundance of questions that people wanted to ask so this was equally as useful. The case study also kept us busy during the week and meant we always had some work of our own to carry out.
Seeing as this placement was only one week and virtual, the amount of responsibility that EY could place on their interns was very limited. We did not work on actual client projects or really have any insight into this which was a shame however I acknowledge that this was not EY's fault or choice. The current circumstances made it very tricky. I would have loved to have been given more responsibility however I appreciate that this was not possible and in previous 'normal' years interns were given much more.
I really believe that I both built on my own skills and learnt some invaluable skills this week that I will take forward into my career. Learning sessions on presentation skills, time management and prioritisation were great to refresh my memory and point out things that will really help in the future. The inclusion of a mindfulness session was great as this is a very new thing to me and not something I have really encountered before.
Everyone was so friendly. I cannot emphasise how welcome I felt within EY even from just a week long virtual internship. Everyone ranging from student recruitment to partners made a huge effort to be welcoming and encouraging and the firm's focus on its people really shone through. General atmosphere was positive and engaging, which carried through to all the interns and was a highlight of the programme for me. It also seemed collaborative and like everyone was really part of a team.
The organisation was spot on. From the Monday morning right till the end of the week everything was run seamlessly. Technical checks were always carried out and issues solved meaning that everyone always had access to the virtual office no problem. Events ran seamlessly and the instructions given were always clear. I would say that it would have been useful to get an overview of the weeks schedule in advance rather than only the night before in order to plan the week.
In only a week it was hard for them to invest into us however the learning sessions were great. They ranged from topics such as high performing teams to mindfulness and presentation skills. Hearing top tips and advice on these topics from some of the firms leaders in those fields was invaluable. I will definitely take these skills forward in an effort to develop myself. The wealth of opportunities available once you join the company for personal training and development was also made abundantly clear to us.
Working from home
Future employment prospects at EY are extremely appealing to me. I honestly have had the most rewarding, exciting and insightful week that has exceeded all of my expectations. Every single person I met from EY has been so welcoming and enthusiastic, as well as so positive about the firm that it has really drawn me in. I am really excited at the prospect to work in such a successful firm that also has such a friendly and people-focused culture.
Doing the weeks internship online did limit the extent of the social scene that we could have, alongside COVID-19! However everyone did make an effort to really get to know each other, with ice breakers and quizes which made the week fun and helped to break down barriers. Breakoff groups within the main group also helped us to get to know other interns on a more personal level and speak to people in a similar position to us.
Seeing as we worked from home there were very limited costs to living/socialising so I cannot really comment on this.
We didn't get a chance to experience this due to us working from home due to COVID-19.
The opportunities outside of work were limited due to COVID-19. However we were strongly encouraged by the firm to engage with both our peers and all of the EY staff that we had met over the course of the internship in order to start building our networks. This was great as it means that hopefully when COVID-19 starts to slow down a bit we can get involved in many more activities outside of juts work.
Internship (1-4 Months)
14th August 2020