Features - Alum of the Month
New York Program
September 2005 Intake
What and where did you study before your Mountbatten internship?
LLB Law and Psychology and LLM International Commercial Law at University of Wales, Swansea.
How did you find out about the programme?
Careers talk from a Mountbatten representative at Uni.
What made you apply for the Mountbatten programme?
It was a year in New York and for something to kick-start post University life, something to move on to.
Describe your sponsor company and your role within it.
Citibank Private Group - Investment Officer Assistant in Investment Management Oversight.
Did anything in particular strike you about the American business culture in comparison to what you were used to?
Having not worked before (beyond student jobs), everything was new so I didn't have much of a reference. I guess looking back on it, one major difference (but this may be banking rather than America) is how much the company name and people's job titles changed, but they were always doing the same job really. It also seemed like US employment seemed a bit more open than in the UK; less elitist.
What was the highlight/most memorable moment of your working experience during this year?
Being taken out for a business lunch as a thank you for my hard work at the end of the year: a vast improvement from the slap on the wrists I got at the 6 month mark!
What was the social highlight/most memorable moment during this year?
The whole year? But I guess organizing the 6-month anniversary photo party - a thoroughly enjoyable challenge that resulted in a really fun night. I might even do another one in the not too distant future...
Please share a little wisdom/philosophy that you acquired during your internship
Don't confuse 'wants' with 'needs'.
If you could change anything about your internship, what would it be?
Nothing really, it was what it was and it was amazing, I thoroughly enjoyed my entire 12 months. I guess maybe my job - I always knew I didn't want to work in finance so that didn't really help my career choices.
What happened after completing the year - what did you do next?
Moved to London like the rest of them. Although I did go on a month-long road trip around the US with some fellow MB's and that was absolutely brilliant. It's very rare to have a month off with friends.
Where are you now in your working life and what do you do?
I've paralegalled in large commercial firms since Mountbatten, but after a career break I'm now a paralegal in a smaller West End law firm called Child and Child. I'm still hunting for an elusive training contract to become a lawyer (but I'm not sure my heart's really in it after three years of trying!).
Do you have any future plans that you would like to realise & what are they (career & social)?
Probably too many to list, for now I'm focussing on getting a training contract. But if I don't have one by September, who knows what will take priority. Beyond that, my career break made me realize I generally need to keep enjoying my life, but put more effort into my hobbies, and to seeing my good friends and family. Money is not as important as people think.