Here to stay! Meet our Intern - Kimberley Cassidy

Kimberley who initially joined us as a summer intern for 10 weeks, has decided that she loves us too much and will now be staying until she starts 4th year in September! She is currently studying towards her BA (Hons) degree in Finance, Investment and Risk at Glasgow Caledonian University. Now on week 8, we finally managed to catch Kimberley for a Q&A session in amongst her action-packed schedule around the office!

Kimberley tells us about how she snapped up an opportunity at Murphy Wealth, the partnership we have with Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU), and the exciting work that she is getting involved in!

What made you want to join Murphy Wealth?

I have always wanted hands-on experience within the finance industry after having a taster in fifth year. I took part in a four-week summer internship with Barclays working in the Corporate Development team.

It can be challenging to get directly involved in the industry when you are a student. Graduate jobs are competitive therefore gaining industry experience allows you to stand out amongst peers. Most internships for big corporations are usually announced earlier in the academic year with most deadlines being around November. It was extremely difficult to meet these deadlines with third year also being quite demanding. I had to study for exams, class tests and complete coursework. Internship applications take hours out of your schedule - sitting numerical reasoning tests, situation judgement tests and completing all the questions. It is generally a difficult and stressful process!

How did you hear about Murphy Wealth and the competition?

Murphy Wealth announced their competition in March and there was instantly a lot of competition amongst students. The internship itself sounded extremely interesting after I heard Ciaran and Adrian speak about it at one of my classes. I heard about Murphy Wealth before as they had onboarded Ciaran as a graduate after he completed his internship there (and the same course as mine!). Therefore, I knew there was a window of opportunity within the company.

Murphy Wealth have a close relationship with Glasgow Caledonian University, especially with the Finance, Investment and Risk programme. Adrian guest lectured two of my classes, so we were aware who Murphy Wealth were when the opportunity arose for the internship. Adrian, being a former graduate of the course, also had a close relationship with the tutors involved in my course.

University Programme Lead Dr Patrick Ring shared that “GCU’s relationship with Murphy Wealth has brought an added dimension to students’ understanding of the world of personal and corporate finance.  Through guest lectures, internships, skills-based competitions, and working with the students’ Risk and Finance Society, Murphy Wealth has enabled students to appreciate the career opportunities that the wealth management sector has to offer, and has contributed to the skills development of literally hundreds of BA(Hons) Finance, Investment and Risk graduates over the past few years.”

Could you tell us a bit more about the competition?

Unlike other companies, Murphy Wealth weren’t demanding candidates to sit numerical reasoning tests or situation judgement tests (phew!). In order to apply for the 10-week paid internship, you were asked to send your CV and 500 words demonstrating your vision on how you would address the challenges currently facing the financial advice industry. In my submission, I spoke about the stereotype and stigma attached to young academics trying to enter the industry. I used a report published by Ernst Young to support my discussion and revealed that the average age of financial advisers is around fifty-two. This can be somewhat discouraging and off-putting to university students and graduates attempting to get their foot in the door and take this career path.

How did you find out about winning?

The results of the competition were announced around a week later at the Murphy Wealth office over food and drinks. Students that didn’t apply were also invited to join the event and find out more about the company. It was a great networking opportunity as we were able to speak to the Murphy Wealth team members too. Whilst second and third place received gift vouchers, I was delighted to be announced as the winner of the competition! Operations Director, Fiona presented me with the award and has since then been extremely considerate about my studies throughout my work experience.  

CEO Adrian Murphy & Kimberley after winning her internship at the results event

What sort of things have you been doing since you started?

To begin with, I had little tasks to ease me into the team and familiarise myself with processes, procedures and the nature of the business. Progressively I moved into a more administrative role which sits at the heart of the business, therefore an ideal starting point. Completing administrative tasks allowed me to familiarise with terminology business operations. I have since also been involved with consumer facing side of business as well as the behind-the-scene processes. As my internship has progressed, I have entered project-based activities mostly set by my assigned buddy, Ciaran. These now include internal projects with technology and client experience, with plans of also working on external and marketing projects.

What are you hoping to get out of your experience here?

The team have an extensive amount of experience, coming from various backgrounds. I hope to gain an insight to this and use it to enhance my own experience this summer. I hope to further enhance my existing skills and develop new skills while building strong, professional relationships. I am confident my experience with Murphy Wealth will prepare me for my career path post-university.  

What would you recommend to students also considering the competition/Murphy Wealth?

Murphy Wealth is a fantastic company to gain experience in, especially as a young academic with little or no previous exposure in the financial industry. The internship progressed at a steady rate allowing me to familiarise with the processes and gradually develop confidently. I have been given responsibilities that are of genuine interest to me and have given me a true insight into the financial advisory and wealth management. Murphy Wealth are quite different to other firms in the sense that they are extremely welcoming to younger professionals aspiring a career within financial services and thus, make you feel confident to drive your career with them.

Kimberley’s internship has also been co-funded by the Santander Universities SME Internship Scheme in partnership with GCU. Launched in 2012, the scheme has helped over 10,000 people in the UK and supports SMEs to attract and retain the best talent in order to reach their full potential.

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