I am in my second year at Exeter studying Economics and Finance. I initially decided to do a placement as I felt that it would be the best way to gain good experience of the business world. I believe this will ultimately provide me with better opportunities once I graduate.

 

I have known for a long time that I want to go into finance, mainly into banking, so I already had an idea of which firms to look into for potential placements. I can’t stress enough the importance of starting the search early. I would say over the summer is ideal, so that once you come back for second year and the work starts to pile up, you won’t become swamped. I found out early on that particularly for Investment Banking, it’s very hard to find a yearlong placement; here summer internships are the norm. Discovering things like this early on in the process is really important, so starting applications early is vital. I started my search towards the end of the summer and had applied to most of my target list by mid-October. It really is like another module so you must be prepared to put the hours in. Although, after doing your first application, most people find it much easier to get started on others.

 

Thankfully I secured my placement just before Christmas, allowing me to focus on exams. I will be working at Livingbridge, who are a mid-market Private Equity firm based in London, and I am really excited to get started. I found this through the Business Schools ‘My Career Zone’. They have hundreds of opportunities on there, which you can filter down to certain sectors or locations, so it’s definitely worth having a look at.

 

The application process for Livingbridge was fairly different to the main banks. It involved sending over a CV and cover letter, along with a short essay by email. I then heard back about a month later, inviting me for an interview, after which I was given an offer. It’s a daunting process, but once you have secured where you will be working, it’s all worth it. The key to success with securing a placement really is to be prepared, make sure you stay on top of your applications and keep an eye out for interesting opportunities!

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