The internship was excellent. I highly enjoyed the combination of interactive training, rotating group projects, and desk-specific work. While being placed with a trading desk, I was given many chances to learn about the sales and structuring teams (and to a smaller degree the quant and risk team). Beyond the internship structure, the enthusiasm of Nomura's employees stood out and resulted in a great working atmosphere.
Although the desk I was placed with was extremely busy, my manager and buddy ensured to take some time to answer any of my questions and/or check in with me how things were going multiple times a week. The fact that they were an ED and a VP demonstrates that Nomura employees (regardless of rank) really care about the interns and want to ensure they have a positive experience.
The support system was excellent since we received support from many sources: (1) our desk manager and buddy, (2) the HR team, and (3) the training provider. As outlined above, my manager and buddy ensured to check in with me every time they had a few minutes to do so during their working hours and, otherwise, after their working hours. In addition, the HR team was always there to answer any queries and scheduled regular check-ins. Moreover, we could always reach out to our training provider beyond the normal training hours and scheduled 1-1 catchups, to clarify some technicalities or to ask for some general advice.
I was quite busy on a daily basis, however, since I got to spend my time on a variety of things, it was never to the extent that I got unmotivated. I was either in training, collaborating with my team for the weekly group presentations, working with my desk, or reaching out to other desks to learn more about their day-to-day work; and during each of these activities I was constantly learning new things.
By the nature of the work (global markets), we (as interns) could not be given any real responsibility. However, that is not to say that we were not given any significant tasks. Each of our assigned projects was of real-life relevance and required us to stay up-to-date with what was happening in the markets. Moreover, we were given a lot of autonomy; the project instructions were relatively broad and we had the freedom to make our own assumptions and add any other components as we wished.
Despite its short duration (5 weeks), the internship has allowed me to develop and enhance various skills and, most strikingly, made me feel more confident about my capabilities. In particular, I got to develop my (1) technical knowledge, (2) market intuition and (3) communication & presenting skills, each of which I believe to be extremely useful for any future endeavours.
Given the virtual setting, I did not get to experience the real "in office" atmosphere. Nevertheless, I noticed great enthusiasm, openness and a real team-mentality in any of my interactions. The fact that the employees were able to convey this virtually says a lot.
The organisation by the HR team was excellent, both leading up to and during the internship. Considering the circumstances, HR designed a great, well-balanced internship with many opportunities to speak to and learn from current employees. Moreover, as the internship evolved, HR continuously listened to feedback cues and made adjustments as necessary to ensure the best experience for us as interns. Lastly, as the internship came to a close, HR continued to support us and was very open and clear about what we could expect next.
Nomura greatly invested in us. Not only were we given an excellent, interactive training programme, current Nomura employees showed a sincere interest in the interns and, despite being busy, took the time to talk with us and even provide feedback on our work-in-progress projects. In addition, HR organised a series of panels for us to gain a better understanding of the company, ranging from insights into the risk & quant teams to the experiences of current graduates.
Working from home
It would be great to be given the opportunity to join Nomura's graduate programme. Not only do I find the work extremely interesting and exciting, but the company's culture is also great. It really showed that each and every member is valued equally and I also found the continuous interaction and collaboration among the desks to be unique. Nomura has been extremely fair throughout the entire process, from honouring the internship despite the pandemic to adjusting project deadlines to our workload, and I am confident they will also be fair in their hiring decisions.
Internship (1-4 Months)
14th August 2020