ALEXANDER PAUL AWARD
Elvis Tanwie Neba
Oghenerukevwe (Jennifer) Odjugo
Having seen many interns over time, we were really impressed with Ayanda and we believe that she truly deserves the award. Being completely new to the investment management industry, she demonstrated a lot of enthusiasm for the job, which, along with her skills, enabled her to make a notable impact even over the relatively short time she spent with the firm.
For example, she singlehandedly delivered a market research project, which has helped our firm shape up its marketing strategy in key areas such as sustainable investing. Ayanda went beyond her call of duty and dived deep into the task, producing a high-quality material and confidently delivering it to the group of senior investment professionals.
For the other project, which we asked all our interns to work together on, Ayanda took a leadership role in assigning roles and coordinating the progress. We were again impressed with her creativity and original thought process. She showed particular interest in sustainable investing, which is the key area of strategic development for our firm and the industry as a whole.
As a person, Ayanda came across as very nice, polite, and friendly. At the same time, she showed a lot of confidence and proved that she’s not afraid to take a stand for her beliefs and values. When our CEO held a meet-and-greet session with interns, Ayanda asked him:“Why do you have so few females on your investment team?”. The CEO may have been taken aback by such a direct and bold question, yet this is exactly the kind of challenge that our industry needs!
We would love to have Ayanda back after she finishes her studies. She has all the personal qualities, energy and determination to have a bright future in the investment industry, and it would be great for her to receive the Alexander Paul Award at the very beginning of her journey.
Ayo recognized the opportunity and embraced all aspects laid before him. Ayo had never worked in a financial services firm and came in curious and open, but willing to learn. Ayo’s ability to read the room and or ask relevant questions went beyond his years and lack of exposure to corporate life. His mentor mentioned that it was his dream come true. Ayo’s energy and excitement were refreshing and relieved the team of the need to coax. He had talks about the hours that were expected of an associate, and it was with a heavy heart Ayo realized that this was not going to be an easy ride. He quickly understood the calibre of the people he would be exposed to, and working for, and stepped up. Even when given what he thought were skeletal instructions, he willingly went back and got clarification so he could produce exactly what was needed. Ayo is the very idea of what we are and should be trying to do at Centerbridge with our D&I initiatives. During the course of his 6 weeks, his plans going forward were impacted in a positive way as he realized he could “swim with the sharks”. We truly believe we’ve left a lasting impression on Ayo, and him with us, as the first of our 100 Black Interns. We would go so far as to say he would be a likely candidate to return for one of our permanent positions should the opportunity arise.
MICHAEL PAGE INTERNATIONAL RECRUITMENT LIMITED
When I was first asked if I wanted the opportunity to work with an intern I jumped at the idea, I thought this would be a really good reciprocal opportunity to learn something new and pass on my own, and my team's, wisdom and experiences. Having never partnered with, and having had not much prior knowledge of the 10,000 Black Interns project, I was keen to understand more.
Having only met my intern, Bernard virtually for the first time for 10 minutes to do brief introductions following my director's intros, he appeared eager to learn and I was excited for him to start with us a few months later. Our system onboarding process notoriously has a few teething issues, made increasingly difficult by the pandemic and having to liaise with someone remotely. Nevertheless, we got there in the end.
Bernard was grasping the work we do, the processes and the reasons why we did it, and he was adept at taking on our feedback and suggestions of how he could more efficiently apply his understandings to the office environment. Bernard really came out of himself, he became curious, challenging us on processes to test his own understanding and knowledge as well as joining up the internal department dots.
Bernard’s confidence grew as he was able to demonstrate he had integrated into the team dynamics, developing his own workload and questioning matters that were new to him or that he had no prior knowledge of.
I can say with confidence Bernard has had a huge impact on myself and the team. We extended his contract with Page Group until not long before he was due to re-join university. Because of Bernard's ability to take on feedback, and his ability to seamlessly integrate himself as part of the team, I truly hope that he will be given serious consideration for this nomination.
ALLIANZ GLOBAL INVESTORS
When we heard about the Alexander Paul Award, we immediately thought that Charles Tavengwa embodies the ethos of this program. In a little over 3 months at Allianz Global Investors, Charles made an outstanding impression, developing a remarkably wide network whilst concurrently impressing his immediate team members with high-quality work. When conducting his internship review, we were hard pushed to identify any points for improvement and instead were flooded with positive feedback praising Charles’ enthusiasm, proactivity and can-do attitude. Charles thoroughly integrated himself into the organisation in a very short period of time and we were sad to see him go.
Charles’ internship initially took place across the Impact Investing and Infrastructure Debt teams. He assisted with the review of early-stage investment opportunities, reading independent expert reports and formulating due diligence questions. He showed the ability to grasp key concepts quickly when, for example, getting to grips with the business plan of a fleet of electric transport assets. He was also able to communicate his understanding in a clear way when contributing to the drafting of an investment committee memo for a fibre network investment. Through engaging with multiple team members, he started to grasp the investment parameters when considering a direct vs fund investment and could then apply his new understanding when evaluating the Impact Fund’s existing fund investments, producing a useful impact measurement tracker.
When attending an internal networking event, he met a colleague from Business Management and their subsequent discussions led to an invitation for him to extend his internship from 2 to 3 months. An intern contract extension is rare and is a testament to Charles’ ability to build relationships and apply himself to new projects. In his work on the resulting Credit Research Automation project, Charles applied a totally different set of skills to his previous work (learning database structures, excel macros etc.) to build a novel credit rating tool. Charles’ willingness to learn a new concept and become skilled at it, whilst then having the confidence to present a technical set of results to a wide audience, was fantastic to watch.
In short, we believe that Charles has the right attitude, raw capabilities and engaging nature that will see him do really well in his career.
Daniel joined our team during an abnormally busy summer period. From the beginning of his internship, Daniel was able to pick up large volumes of new information with minimal requirement for re-explanation. This resulted in Daniel not completing typical internship tasks, but positively contributing and saving us capacity on some more technical client pieces. Daniel is inquisitive and is not hesitant to ask questions, but also resourceful enough to find answers independently, meaning that the questions he was asking were insightful and gave the impression of a willingness to learn at a higher level.
Daniel is vocal during research meetings and more than willing to engage with senior members of the firm both socially and professionally. One question stood out in my mind, whereby Daniel challenged an external Asian equity fund manager, highlighting his ESG concerns over a certain region within the fund. The question highlighted a potential weakness in that geography and certainly added to our knowledge of the fund.
In terms of confidence, Daniel has this in abundance. Rarely did a two day period go by where Daniel hadn’t bumped into an unknown colleague whilst grabbing a drink or walking to a meeting. Informal 30-minute networking meetings seemed to be a daily event for Daniel, most of which were arranged independently. I think it’s fair to say, he independently did as much proactive networking in 6 weeks as many colleagues would do in as many years.
In summary, Daniel fit straight into our team, performed work well, above expectations, genuinely contributing to our output and freeing up capacity on our desk – which we believe is atypical for a summer intern. He networked incredibly well and was able to form far more professional relationships than expectations would allow.
Daniel made a large impact during his time with Ares, with his professionalism, positivity and curiosity noted by each of the team members he interacted with. Daniel is clearly very engaged in learning more about the finance industry, and asked insightful questions as part of his sector presentation and more generally during his time with Ares. As part of his time with us, Daniel was asked to prepare a presentation on current themes impacting the pub sector, in which Ares has historically invested. The presentation was well-researched and thought through. He leveraged the experience of a number of Ares employees across a range of teams in order to collate a succinct overview of the key issues impacting the sector and the outlook over the medium term. Daniel’s presentation leveraged his creativity, being delivered in his own words and with analogies that helped bring his view of the sector to life.
He was also proactive in reaching out to team members to learn more about their background and a true "day-in-the-life" of an Ares employee, which will stand him in good stead as he considers the next steps in his career. Throughout his time with us, Daniel approached his allocated tasks with diligence and professionalism, including arriving in the office early and staying back to finalise tasks as required. Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Daniel, given his positive and engaged attitude, and the unique perspective that he brought to the wider Ares team.
CALEDONIA INVESTMENTS PLC
We believe that Ellis is one of the future leaders of his generation. He influenced everyone he encountered during Caledonia’s Internship Programme; our employees, his peers, and external professionals alike.
Ellis displayed maturity and discipline beyond his 18 years, not just building self confidence but earning the trust and confidence of others too. Any concerns that Ellis would struggle to fit in with a graduate group were unfounded. He was the most engaged and insightful of our group, imparted energy as he progressed, and was chosen by the other interns as their standout candidate. As a firm we learnt from him, we were challenged by him, and we would love to work with him. Ellis’s journey and contribution have inspired Caledonia to develop an Associate Programme. This award would catalyse Ellis’ potential.
Ellis is thoughtful, understated, and wise enough to use these attributes to make a lasting impact. In group exercises and activities, he naturally emerged as a leader, commanding respect through clear communication, sound judgement, and a positive approach to problem-solving. Ellis’ demeanour belies his age. His stance, voice and attitude became those of a confident and mature individual. When presenting his team’s final investment proposal, he spoke clearly, sought eye contact and personalised his content with humour. He keeps nervousness under control, founded on the confidence of understanding his material thoroughly. Ellis is comfortable sharing his opinions which are always thoughtfully considered, often pushing the discussion in challenging directions, and stimulating new ideas. Liked by all, respectful in disagreement, and influential through objective argument. Ellis demonstrates a voracious appetite for knowledge; learning through observation, reflection and questioning. In discussions with senior Caledonia colleagues and portfolio CEOs, he was insightful, incisive and challenging to the point of understanding new concepts to his own satisfaction. He does not squander acquired knowledge and is organised, factual, and methodical. Ellis’work on a vlog, summarising his team’s internship experience, was inspired. He produced an engaging film with structure, creativity in transitions, and charismatic delivery to camera. He connected with colleagues across Caledonia to gain a variety of perspectives, which he conveyed through eloquent narration.
Elvis was a great addition to our team during his internship with his excellent work ethic, positive attitude, and enthusiasm. Given the nature of what we do at Endless, our investment team are experienced professionals, the majority of whom have qualified at one of the Big Four. It would be challenging for an intern to come into of team on such a junior level and blend in easily within such a short period of time. However, Elvis walked in open-minded and with confidence to tackle the task that was put in front of him. He demonstrated some great people skills by ensuring he spoke to everyone in the team, and as a result, managed to get involved in a wide variety of projects across the firm, supporting different teams in the portfolio as well as different deal origination streams and in-house due diligence. It was clear from the outset that Elvis was keen on learning as much as possible from his internship and his enthusiasm was really appreciated by our team. Elvis is studying Chemical Engineering and hence started the internship with limited knowledge of accounting and finance, however, he did not hesitate to ask plenty of questions of his colleagues when unsure and we have also noticed that he spent time prior to the internship and outside of the internship learning more on these topics and broaden his knowledge.
Elvis proved very reliable throughout his internship and there was no doubt that by coming from a non-accounting background, he was able to look at tasks from diverse angles which was a value-add to our team. During his internship with us, Elvis was able to research and assess the financial performance of 100+ investment targets, completed a presentation deck with 50+ targets for an investment committee review, completed a detailed market mapping model for a portfolio company and a “green” project to inform the firm’s ESG strategy. We have received positive feedback on all of his projects, including external feedback from our management teams at the portfolio.
CLOSE BROTHERS ASSET MANAGEMENT
A six-week internship is always going to be challenging and requires diligence and discipline, but for Eshe, this was all the more difficult as her internship manager had to take extended personal leave a few days before the internship started, and of course, the pandemic meant six weeks of remote working.
From the first Zoom call, I knew she was special. She’s curious, witty and intelligent. She has a warm smile and a gentle nature. You could be forgiven for thinking she might be shy and perhaps timid, but this young lady has so much emotional intelligence and charisma she charmed everyone she met. Including the CEO whom she bumped into at the coffee machine and chatted animatedly to without knowing who he was. He was both charmed and impressed, she later blushed when she realised who he was.
As a Marketing intern, I wanted Eshe to get a feel for the breadth of the work we do but also get a good understanding of the business as well as developing her personal skills. Her timetable was a little intense at times (just over 70 meetings!) but she was always on time, always well presented. It was evident she’d prepared for each meeting, taking time to understand the audience and subject matter, even when tech failed her she was never flustered.
One task we set was guest editor for our weekly newsletter. She quickly grasped the required tone and came back with a raft of new features and a new design - all of which we’ve shamelessly incorporated into our new look newsletter! It’s a joy to see Eshe’s legacy each week.
I asked those who worked with Eshe to provide feedback, the most striking comment was that Eshe somehow changed us. She made us stop and think about what we did, she reminded us to always be inquisitive, to care and to enjoy one another and I think for me, that’s her legacy. We miss her and we know she’ll have the most fantastic career whichever path she chooses.
And finally, we asked Eshe if she would be willing to create a short video on her experience at CBAM, despite being at home on her own, she delivered an engaging and characteristically enthusiastic film that fulfilled the brief perfectly. So you can hear from Eshe herself!
“I found Eshe to be genuinely curious, enthusiastic, articulate, creative and confident. She seized the opportunity to intern with CBAM and as much as we shared our experience, she offered an equal amount of thoughtful and exciting ideas in exchange.”
“Eshe has a generous spirit and was a pleasure to work with. At a time when many people are suffering from video conference fatigue, she had an incredibly positive, authentic and inquisitive approach to meetings, asking probing questions and coming up with new ideas.“
“She was always very engaged and inquisitive, offering insightful articulate reflections on any topics discussed. She was an absolute pleasure to work with!”
“Eshe is self-assured, capable and possesses a quiet confidence that I’m sure will take her far.”
LEGAL AND GENERAL INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT
Gbeke came into work every day with a very mature mindset. He understood the importance of networking, never turning down an opportunity to learn something new even if it wasn’t in his primary interest area and left a positive impression on whomever he crossed paths with. During his 6-week tenure, I received multiple feedback emails from colleagues who were impressed with his ability to carry himself in a work environment, his conversation whilst networking and his attitude towards work by always asking the right questions.
Gbeke displayed immense confidence during his internship; speaking up in meetings, proactively reaching out to teams around the company which leaned towards his interests of being in a client-facing position, using his excellent interpersonal skills to explore all opportunities that may have been available to him. Many times, without needing to prompt him!
Gbeke was also tasked with presenting a stock pitch idea to some very senior members of the investment teams at LGIM and providing a Buy/Sell recommendation. Despite a member of the initial 3 interns in his group leaving before their presentation, he managed to deliver an excellent presentation in the LGIM boardroom to a panel of fund managers and senior managers. Gbeke and his group member were awarded the best stock pitch idea amongst the 17 interns. This was a testament to the research, hard work and clarity in which Gbeke delivered his presentation.
As mentioned earlier, Gbeke would always speak up in meetings and ask questions or he would save his questions to ask me after. He was always very keen to offer a helping hand where possible and showed interest in all tasks presented to him…even if they weren’t the most interesting!
Gbeke displayed confidence when meeting various stakeholders around the business and proactively would send meeting invites to members of staff who had hosted teaching sessions to find out what sort of opportunities were available to him and how he could broaden his knowledge of that area. In the end, it was this creativity and passion that led to him securing one of the few full-time positions available within his chosen area in the sales team!
There is an anecdote we tell about this summer when our two new interns, Tobi Adeyimi and Georgia Reid, had just finished a meeting that included our graduate programme joiners and senior managers. When asked how it was, Georgia mentioned in passing how she enjoyed the chance to introduce herself to “a certain Mr Lovelace, who was very nice and interested in my profile” and who insisted on having a separate call with the 10,000 Black Intern participants. A group of us had spent months preparing for the internship. We had to come up with a project for the programme, list interesting people to meet, and organise multiple one-on-one calls. Georgia had already managed to outdo us. It was only her second day, so you should forgive her for not realising she had just been talking to and managed to arrange a follow-up call with, the grandson of Jonathan Bell Lovelace, founder of Capital Group, a company that manages over USD 2 trillion and with over 8,000 employees. Georgia was obviously surprised. We were not. From the very beginning, she came across as a confident individual taking the time to listen and with the curiosity to ask the right questions. Her energy and wit did not fade there, far from shy, she always participated in our team sessions with professional queries or adding a personal experience of her own relevant to the conversation. When asking for feedback we always received raving comments from people that would be happy to see her being part of our firm.
Georgia’s impact will last beyond her eight-week internship. Through thoughtful contributions, she showed a propensity to bring a unique perspective that shaped the views of our broader team. Her insights were well constructed and articulated which built her credibility. Broadening perspectives was one of the desired outcomes of our participation in the program which Georgia both benefited from and found ways to reciprocate. We are delighted to wholeheartedly nominate Georgia Reid for The Alexander Paul Award as one of the 10,000 Black Interns participants of 2021.
RBC GLOBAL ASSET MANAGEMENT
We found Hamza to be a proactive, conscientious and very likeable individual. In his time spent with both equity desks at RBC Global Asset Management (UK) Limited, he adapted very quickly and got up-to-speed straight away on the tasks at hand, as well as the work ethic and culture of the teams.
The company-specific work he did for both the European and Global desks was thorough, detailed and thought-provoking. Many of the slides in his final presentation we can incorporate into our‘slide bank’ that we can potentially use in future client presentations. He came to explicit conclusions in his stock specific work and dealt with some tough and challenging questioning over said conclusions. We attempted to test him and put him on the spot, and he responded excellently.
In his stock analysis, he went above and beyond in his valuation critique (something that is very difficult and opens you up to potential criticism), and he achieved this by actively asking and learning from many members of the team – and came to his own style and conclusions on how to go about it.
In the other ESG research he conducted on existing portfolio constituents, he went further and deeper than we asked, and on more names than were given to him – that is a great help to the team’s workload over the coming months.
He encouraged other interns on the programme to broaden their experience over the summer and learn about areas of Equity analysis (hopefully because he found it challenging and rewarding), and we had conversations with interns on other desks asking us about what we do and how we do it on his recommendation.
We thought the programme would be tough on the interns in terms of the mixture of remote and in-office working, and the number of staff in the office is fairly limited – but he responded well, met people off-site, coincided days to overlap with others and dealt with the remote aspect of working well.
We hope Hamza had as positive of an experience as we all did over his time with us.
BLANTYRE CAPITAL LIMITED
Harry Philips interned with Blantyre Capital for 6 weeks over the 2021 summer. We are a small private equity firm founded in 2016 and are focused on turning around troubled businesses across Europe. We have never had an intern as young as Harry, but we were keen to explore how such a young professional could fit into our organisation. And what a story.
Firstly, Harry impressed us during the selection process as he was keen to present an investment opportunity to us in his first conversation. It is rare to see individuals willing to take the risk of proposing a transaction if it isn’t required as part of the interview process. That initial positive impact was further deepened when Harry presented an investment opportunity on his second day on the job, whilst most of us were working remotely. The confidence he had to be open to present it, which he was told explicitly not to do if he wasn't feeling ready, is something we haven't seen with more senior analysts on joining. Over the following 6 weeks, he displayed his ability to learn quickly from all the aspects of the firm, from investing, to managing the portfolio, and to the back-office work. To note, in his last week in the office, he presented an opportunity in which he had developed a creative way to align the interests of different parties in a transaction that may actually lead to a real deal! By the end of the internship, he summarized the key lessons he learnt each week and we were surprised to read things such as "the importance of building a good reputation" and how "simplicity" is key to delivering the right message. Effectively, in 6 weeks, he has synthesised what other investment professionals take years to do.
Overall, his curiosity has allowed him to learn across the different areas at a very early stage in his professional career, which will certainly allow him to make more thoughtful decisions along the way.
SCHRODERS PERSONAL WEALTH (SPW)
Joel immersed himself into SPW and quickly articulated how he grasped the nature of our business and the role the Investment Office plays within the broader organisation. He was very engaging and inquisitive,
demonstrating a keen curiosity about the wider business - evidenced by taking time to attend Diversity Network meetings, his client meeting observations and how he forged stakeholder connections across the whole business, including playing football after work with the Chief Investment Office team.
Joel impressed senior leaders when working on a project designing a new range of market-leading income funds by his advanced level of knowledge and questions at de-briefings. He conducted extensive industry research, taking in-depth views on the fundamental structures of competitor funds using key resources (Morningstar) to make judgements on derivative usage and income generation. He and the other intern, worked independently compiling detailed competitor marketplace summaries and presented them to the Chief Marketing Officer. Joel worked with our delegated IM, Schroders Investment Management, to compile a full new SPW fund product proforma for consideration and submission to the ACD board for launch.
Joel displayed a great deal of independent thought, research and creativity throughout the internship. This was particularly evident during the industry research activity where he successfully probed and deciphered a
traditionally opaque marketplace to provide clear and insightful research that was then carefully and confidently presented to executive stakeholders. When attending and observing manager meetings, Joel consistently demonstrated his ability to perceive the bigger picture and think outside the box with relevant probing comments.
Joel is a very knowledgeable, analytical and capable individual. He is mature and displays strong emotional intelligence enabling him to successfully influence those he interacts with. He was considerate and tactful, which greatly impressed stakeholders. Joel is very likeable and quickly able to create positive relationships. He is very talented and it was remarkable to see how he remained calm, confident and composed during presentations. Considering the impact and interest in the broader business, he showed great leadership potential and we are proud that he has accepted a role on the SPW graduate scheme.
Jonas was highly engaged and very excited for both the learnings and the challenges that he came across. He made great progress over the six-week program and had a great work ethic open to all new projects. He is now much better positioned in pursuing a career in finance or management consulting in the near future. Having worked in other environments Jonas was the more mature option as such came with a little more focus and direction than was expected.
Jonas was focused on what he could bring to an entity like Centerbridge and thereby gain real-life experience during the short time he was with us. We know he found the work and the interactions difficult but took those difficult times as a chance to test himself. At times, the energy from Jonas was positive to the extent that we think this was why he got one-on-one time with many of our leaders in London and New York on multiple occasions. Had we not known Jonas came through the 100 Black Interns program we would have easily assumed he was directly from one of our pipeline employment streams and that’s a testament to his ability to adapt to our exacting environment. His work is at this moment is being used in a prospect. We don’t think there’s a higher endorsement this time here and look forward to being associated with his career for many years.
Joshua began his internship with huge enthusiasm and curiosity. On our two hour train journey together to his induction in Leeds, he scarcely had time to pause for breath between questions he had about the Private Equity industry, the world of business, and how he could use this experience to maximum effect as he begins his career. From that first day, I knew Joshua was serious about his ambitions for his future, and that his ability to understand complex concepts make people warm to him and his thirst for knowledge will help him succeed in whatever direction life takes him.
During his time with us, Joshua also demonstrated a self-assuredness and confidence, considerately setting out his opinions and insights even when amongst a much more senior group. Spurred on by the elements of his degree that focused on sustainability, he worked diligently on an environmental project to help shape our reporting framework across our portfolio and to support our green agenda for the future. He left Endless more knowledgeable than anyone still here with regard to environmental targets for our sector. Joshua didn't shy away from throwing himself into the more technical financial work that we do, spending considerable time teaching himself basic accounting and showing an eagerness to learn from and support everyone in the team at every opportunity.
Outside of work during his internship programme, Joshua led the organisation in a seminar for young black boys and men in his church community. I truly believe Joshua’s courage in his convictions in all aspects of how he behaved is fundamental in our industry to reduce homogeneous thought and decision making, led by the example of his non-judgemental but unapologetic ability to be himself.
Kaitlin was a true team player and demonstrated a tremendous work ethic as well as an innate desire to learn. For the Direct Team, the majority of her time was spent creating a portfolio tracking tool that will significantly increase our ability to have portfolio performance data at our fingertips. Her work was accurate and very thorough and she was a pleasure to work with.
Kaitlin brought a level of professionalism to our program. This was the first year that our firm instituted a formal internship program so we were really reliant on input from our interns. Kaitlin showed herself to be a leader and a person others could look to for guidance. One talent that really stood out while working with Kaitlin was her ability to absorb and retain so much knowledge. We had a Speaker Series and you could see Kaitlin’s attentiveness and responsiveness. She would always take notes and ask well thought out questions. Another skill set that Kaitlin displayed was her follow up skills. After each speaker call or interaction, she would thank the person for their time and she would do this either verbally or would send a note or email.
Kaitlin was a true professional, a great example of the talent within 100/ 10,000 Black Interns and more importantly a really good person.
I hope you will consider Kaitlin as a good candidate for this award.
Karl Kareem joined Aspect on a six-month placement from Imperial College in March 2021. He initially worked in our Investor Solutions team on a project to create a dynamic simulation environment, i.e. presenting technical data in
a way non-technical people can understand easily. He was given the free rein to design a solution and created something that is now widely used within Aspect. It quickly became clear that Karl Kareem had the skills to broaden his role, and he proactively sought opportunities in our quantitative research teams. His work on one particular project within our volatility team has been put into production and is used every day as a key component of our risk management framework – pretty impressive for someone with no previous experience.
Aside from the ‘job’, Karl Kareem confidently took on the role of chief intern (a self-appointed title, but we thoroughly approve), and has played a major part in our 2021 intern cohort feeling settled and supported at Aspect, particularly over a summer where there were often fewer people in the physical office than usual. He’s arranged breakfasts, lunches and a comedy night. This is an extremely important part of Aspect’s culture which he understood and embraced from day one.
In short, he’s made a big impact in a short space of time, and we very much hope that he accepts our offer of employment when he graduates in 2022.
Khalid Sulaiman joined the Evercore team for a summer internship from June to August 2021. From the start and throughout Khalid Sulaiman’s 10-week Internship at Evercore, he proved to be a crucial addition to the team. His curiosity and interest in Evercore’s work made him a great, rapidly integrated addition to the working environment. His carefully thought-out questions and observations made fruitful ground for learning and discussion.
His continuous competence and ability to complete the tasks at hand, including assisting the team with a marketing task, with confidence and helpful suggestions, were impressive. Not only is Khalid hard-working but also frequently takes initiative in the workplace. Khalid approached challenges and hurdles within his tasks with maturity, finding creative and innovative solutions.
His professional mindset and ability to seamlessly integrate into the team were among his most redeeming qualities, especially noticeable during such a short internship period. Khalid was able to adapt to the fast-paced and demanding work environment quickly and impressively. Khalid became an integral part of the team quickly and will undoubtedly continue to develop and grow.
Khalid received an offer to join our 2022 Graduate Class and is currently completing an additional 6-month off-cycle internship.
RUKEVWE (JENNIFER) ODJUGO
SCHRODERS PERSONAL WEALTH (SPW)
From day 1 it was clear Jennifer wanted to impress and leave her mark at Schroders Personal Wealth (SPW). Her tenacity and commitment to maximise the internship opportunity was clear.
Jennifer worked on a project to help the design of a new range of market leading income funds. She conducted extensive industry research, taking in-depth looks at the fundamental structures of competitor funds and using key resources such as Morningstar to make judgements on derivative usage and sources of income generation. She was highly impressive, working independently to compile a detailed summary of the competitor marketplace which was then presented to the chief marketing officer. She proceeded to work on the construct of an SPW fund, working with our delegated IM Schroders Investment Management and compiling a full product proforma for consideration of the ACD. Once a request is formally made by the operating company this proforma will be used for submission to the ACD board for the launch of the product.
Jennifer has a particular interest in becoming an investment specialist. She demonstrated a clear capability around research, knowledge and innovation to present perceptive and clear analysis on this area through her technical ability.
Jennifer is a highly qualified, enterprising, and extroverted individual. Her energy and determination to succeed are impressive. She has shown a lot of initiative and enthusiasm to collaborate during her time at Schroders Personal Wealth, for example by scheduling her own shadowing sessions and creating spontaneous opportunities to help, such as improving documents and spreadsheets. Also, she has shown a clear interest in the communication aspect within finance, especially regarding breaking down more technical knowledge to clients, which is also reflected in her newsletter on LinkedIn “The Beginner Investor”. Taking her qualities and interests into consideration, with some support to develop her delivery style we believe she has the capability to become an outstanding investment specialist. Following the successful internship at SPW and the potential she demonstrated, we are proud to confirm that we have offered her a place on our Graduate scheme.
STABLE ASSET MANAGEMENT
I am nominating Saphia Sebbak for the Alexander Paul Award owing to her resourceful, enthusiastic and engaged attitude during her internship at Stable Asset Management. She was receptive to any challenge or task assigned to her during the period, demonstrating diligence, organisation and passion. She was an active participant during meetings and provided constructive feedback on processes. Following meetings with clients, she frequently took the initiative to research investment topics further to broaden her insight and understanding. An avid learner, Saphia frequently asked for additional readings or due diligence to review to broaden her knowledge of the asset management industry. She also participated in a number of reporting tasks, which will be utilised by the firm on a forward basis across different areas of the business.
Overall, Saphia was viewed by the team as a highly intelligent and professional individual who applied herself each day of the internship and sought to gain the maximum out of the experience through thoroughly immersing and engaging herself in the firm and our research. Saphia was a confident individual yet very humble and modest and was prepared to help the team in any form, to enable us to reach better outcomes.
CLOSE BROTHERS ASSET MANAGEMENT
Tafadzwa joined the IT Application Support team at Close Brothers Asset Management initially for a 6-week internship, though we were so impressed with her tenacity to not just “come and get involved” but also her drive to develop herself in the process and get as much out of the experience as possible. So much so that we extended Tafadzwa for a further 4 weeks and would like to see her return again at some point to come.
Tafadzwa helped us with a number of internal service improvements, one of which we’d been struggling with even ourselves for several months and with Tafadzwa’s help we succeeded to roll that improvement out. As well as help in the support team, Tafadzwa took the initiative to engage with several of our business teams, building up a good understanding of how our entire business operates, engaging with teams in front & back office areas as well as IT.
Tafadzwa has a naturally inquisitive mind and that comes in handy in a technology role, so she would always ask for an explanation of unfamiliar terminology or processes, rather than just accept what people were talking to about without full comprehension. Showing interest at this level and having a determination to fully understand the subject matter, will be a huge asset to Tafadzwa in her education and career journeys.
Upon joining the firm, Tanya demonstrated great intellectual curiosity and commercial awareness, asking good questions to stakeholders from an early stage.
Tanya remained very focused on delivering value for the firm and was even able to provide some thought-provoking suggestions for future investments. Her thoughtful approach and enthusiasm were fully appreciated, and she made a lasting impact despite her colleagues working primarily from home.
Tanya worked predominantly on an ESG project regarding carbon offsets, in which she was able to produce research and ask questions that impacted the direction of the project, now being taken forward by the team.
She was able to represent the firm incredibly well, and we were impressed with the way she managed stakeholders, something that can be difficult to do at an early career stage.
Tobi joined BIE Executive in June 2021. In the short time he has worked for the business he has made a significant impact and has demonstrated confidence, curiosity, and creativity consistently.
Over the course of his internship, Tobi has added huge value by supporting the organisation and segmentation of our Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. His work here has transformed the business’ historic technology, recruitment and marketing data and the new processes he has helped implement will continue to positively impact the business for years to come.
Given Tobi joined a hybrid working model during a pandemic (2-3 days in the office, others from home), he has immersed himself in life at BIE with surprising ease. He is well-liked by all teams, senior managers and the board, for his approachability and inquisitive nature. Throughout the internship, Tobi has sought out opportunities to learn and get involved across the business. After informing the marketing team he had studied elements of marketing during his degree, they quickly asked for his support on an email marketing campaign that supported the launch of an industry report. Tobi demonstrated great creativity when designing the campaign and strong analytical skills when deciding the audience, their attributes and how BIE could keep this audience engaged. The campaign performed incredibly well, delivering results well above industry standard.
In addition to the impact he has made, Tobi leaves BIE with a strong understanding of what we do as a collective, how the individual teams and consultants operate and how all the parts move together to achieve a collective objective.
Steve Arrow, Director:“Tobi seeks to understand the outcome we are looking for with projects he’s been involved in. Rather than just focus on the task, he has been interested in how it all fits together with other parts of the business.”
The first thing that we learned about Tolu was that she has an incredibly positive attitude. By approaching challenges with a smile and willingness to learn, Tolu earned the trust of the team, created more opportunities for herself and compounded her learning. Tolu met with a wide range of professionals during her internship, from Regional Heads to Analysts, making the effort to engage with each individual, no matter what team, location or role, and receiving resounding positive feedback around her confidence, intellectual curiosity and desire to understand how to build a foundation for career success.
Tolu demonstrated flexibility in her work style, exhibiting success both in person and also remotely. Her proactivity was valued by our team. With her core team, the Fund Investment Team, Tolu demonstrated an open mind and readiness to learn. She tied her education to what she learned on the job, demonstrating growth in her capabilities over the summer and implementing feedback and new concepts quickly.
She completed a range of different tasks during her tenure, notably engaging in fund investment due diligence activities for new investment opportunities and constructing benchmark presentations to be used by the European investment team. She took the lead in presenting her analysis to the investment team while layering in her own perspectives and answering questions on her projects. Tolu
led the first iteration of a data management project to enhance the granularity of the data capture within our deal CRM. She worked closely with one of our analysts on a Capstone summer project, which encouraged creative thinking and the confidence to pitch views on private equity funds, strategies, and proposed portfolio construction to senior professionals. She also successfully completed projects for our relationship management, secondaries and co-investment teams.
Tolu was a natural fit to Hamilton Lane’s culture, exemplifying the collaborative and inclusive environment we seek to foster. Tolu has not only delivered high quality work but also brought a different viewpoint to the table, which we value deeply.
Our offer to Tolu of full-time employment on our analyst graduate scheme is a reflection of her achievements this summer.
Warsame brought a thoughtful and curious approach to his time at Ares, with his experience and ability to think through complex problems and ask insightful questions being a clear strength. His ability to review and analyse relatively complex legal term sheets and ask insightful questions was clearly above the level expected for an intern with limited on-the-job experience. During his time with Ares, Warsame was asked to prepare a presentation on the current themes impacting the travel and leisure sector, which has experienced Covid-19 related disruption and changes to the medium-term outlook. The presentation was a detailed analysis, leveraging both internal Ares resources and external data sources in order to present a thoughtful summary of the outlook for the sector. Warsame’s verbal presentation and Q&A responses were confident and considered, responding to senior Ares partners’ detailed questions on the travel and leisure sector, and demonstrating an ability to think through problems on his feet and under pressure.
Warsame was also proactive in reaching out to Ares employees to understand more about their day-to-day roles in a less formal environment. Overall, we found Warsame a professional, confident and curious addition to the Ares team, and one that we thoroughly enjoyed having with us for the course of his internship.
Intellectually outstanding – an ability to not only pick up new concepts quickly but also a strong intellectual curiosity to challenge herself to build a firm and comprehensive understanding.
Deep rigour – demonstrated a capacity to go over and above to ensure her analysis was completed to a high standard.
Excellent foresight and natural ability – was very keen to understand how her work fitted into the bigger picture to ensure that her work was appropriately tailored to the teams and wider business she was working with.
Clarity of thought – Winnie has a great capacity to build logical arguments and articulate them to the people she is working with.
Analytical expertise – One example of Winnie’s analytical expertise stands out – she was required to develop a response for the firm to a regulatory consultation. In order to deliver this analysis, she needed to build, from a standing start, a deep understanding of a range of complex skills and concepts, from technical investing, to financial analysis and sustainability. With this insight, she then produced a report for our Head of Sustainability which was submitted on behalf of the firm which articulated these views in precise, clear terms with real value add insight.
Through these key traits, Winnie was able to bring a fresh perspective to the work she conducted and was happy to challenge the ‘status quo’; this new mindset was a great help to the teams she was working with. The breadth of Winnie’s capabilities was also demonstrated by the range of business lines she was adding value to, including the legal team, the investment team, and the covenant team.
Winnie suggested a reverse mentor relationship, this was with our Group Head of HR and enabled Winnie the opportunity to share her thoughts on the Group’s Diversity and Inclusion strategy with HR. The most impactful element of Winnie’s presentation was her experience as a young black woman attempting to secure employment post-university and the overt conscious bias that she came up against, insightfully shared with the senior team.
THE CARLYLE GROUP
Xaymaca joined Carlyle for the internship having previously explored careers as a journalist, musician and historian (his chosen university subject). Despite his previous lack of experience and knowledge of the financial services industry, asset management and private equity, Xaymaca demonstrated his commitment and unfaltering dedication to learning more about the industry and job throughout his time here.
He consistently demonstrated his intellectual curiosity with follow-up questions and emails throughout the programme, including once the internship ended. On one occasion, he had been walked through an example of an M&A auction process for the first time, following up with insightful, strategic questions about the conduct of the process, far exceeding expectations. On another occasion, Xaymaca demonstrated his ability to think critically and created a detailed framework to model the revenue of a business, thereby exhibiting analytical but creative thinking and demonstrating a clear ability to apply learnings from previous sessions in a different context.
Despite having no prior knowledge or experience of interpreting financial statements and financial modelling, Xaymaca impressed us with his ability to pick up new concepts, think critically and ask questions – he produced a structured, 10-page presentation and model as part of his summer project for a business at the end of the programme, only 5 weeks after joining us. Xaymaca also integrated well with the team and his fellow interns with his positive attitude being welcomed by all.
The development in Xaymaca’s confidence throughout the internship was clearly apparent, cumulating in Xaymaca being able to hold his own and impress in a 1:1 session with Simon Dingemans, Partner of the Fund and Head of the UK team at Carlyle. Xaymaca demonstrated professionalism and curiosity, as well as a determination to learn throughout. Xaymaca’s enthusiastic nature left a lasting impression on everyone he met throughout the internship, and we are all convinced he is very deserving of this award.