A summer internship with an investment bank is an excellent way to get a feel for the industry and to pick up useful skills and insight along the way.
We spoke to three former Deutsche Bank interns about their experiences on the programme and asked them what they took away from the process. Here’s what they said.
Lucy studied Geography at the University of Oxford. She now works for Deutsche Bank Asset Management.
As a geography student, working for an investment bank wasn't an obvious path for me to go down. However, having gone along to several networking events on campus, I was surprised at how well matched my skills were for many of the roles on offer. Investment banking felt like something that I might enjoy and be good at, so I decided to apply for the Deutsche Bank internship programme.
Having been to a number of events on campus I had a pretty strong understanding of the company when it came to applying. I was able to draw on the conversations I'd had with Deutsche Bank employees I'd met during the interview process.
The most important piece of advice I was given was to make sure you get as much interview practice as you possibly can. The more you know about the process the more relaxed you’ll feel, and the ability to remain calm under pressure is a big part of what interviewers are looking for.
My internship consisted of three separate rotations: two in sales and one in portfolio management. Each was very different from the next and it meant getting used to a new environment and a different way of working. The most important thing for an intern or graduate is being able to add value to the team. Rather than waiting to be given work, why not be proactive and offer to do something to help your colleagues?
There was a welcome evening at the start of the programme, and I got to meet the other interns from across the different divisions of the bank, which was really nice. We all became good friends over the course of the summer, and many of these friendships have been carried through into the graduate programme.
You soon find that having this network of different people at your fingertips is invaluable. If something needs doing quickly it's far easier to ring someone up who has the answer than to scroll through a 200-page document.
Towards the end of the placement my department organised a round table event for all the interns with the Head of Asset and Wealth Management. We were able to ask him questions and he had an hour to chat to us and get to know us a little. It was a really valuable experience and emphasised how important we are to the company.
Luigi completed a Masters in Finance at the University of Bocconi. He’s now a graduate with the Risk division at Deutsche Bank.
I'd been interested in financial markets for a while, and applying for an internship with an investment bank felt like a natural progression. It was also an opportunity to assess whether this was the right career path for me.
I'd been to a Deutsche Bank recruitment event on campus, and found the insight I gained from this about the application process to be invaluable. Regardless of which firm you apply to you’re likely to come up against lots of great candidates, so it’s vital that you can offer something a little bit different.
While academic ability is important, employers like candidates to have a broad range of experiences; an unusual hobby or an interesting work placement will add something extra to your CV and help you stand out from the crowd.
My internship was with the leveraged finance team, which is part of the bank's credit risk management division. There is a lot of interaction between different teams, and I was encouraged to network with people across the division. Having this exposure was really useful; it helped me to develop a wider understanding of how the risk management business works and the different products and services involved.
As an intern you're constantly learning; you can't take anything for granted, and it's so important to ask questions. People are usually only too happy to take the time to stop and explain things to you – they remember what it's like to be brand new in the industry.
I really enjoyed the social side of the internship programme and getting to know the people in my team. In some ways this aspect is just as important as the work you're doing every day – you might be great at the technical side of things, but if you aren’t talking to people and building those connections you risk slipping under the radar.
I must have made a good impression as, towards the end of the internship, I was asked to come back and join the team as a graduate. My colleagues took me out to lunch at a nice restaurant on the final day of my placement – it was the perfect way to officially welcome me to the team!
Jonathan studied Economics at LSE. He is now an analyst with Deutsche Bank Asset Management.
I was fortunate that my university has strong links with employers. The careers service were very proactive in helping me apply for internships; they saw that my favourite subjects were economics and maths, so they suggested I consider opportunities within investment banking.
Because lots of people at my university were in the process of applying for internships there was a ready-made support network that I could tap into for advice and tips. This was invaluable when it came to preparing for the online psychometric tests or when practising my interview technique.
My interviews must have gone quite well, though it didn't always feel like it at the time. In hindsight, a big part of the process is being able to get on with your interviewer and to build that rapport.
The questions can be tricky, but they aren't necessarily looking for you to give the perfect answer every time – it's more about testing the depth of your understanding and seeing if you're the right fit for the organisation.
My internship consisted of two rotations, each lasting four weeks. At the start of the rotation I was given a long-term project to sink my teeth into alongside my other responsibilities. It involved putting together my own financial model for valuing companies. It was a challenging assignment, but there was no better way to learn about how the valuation process works.
Ultimately, the people in my team were what made the experience so enjoyable – we really clicked. Everyone was extremely supportive and great at offering advice and feedback when I needed it. I was fortunate enough to be offered a place within the same team when it later came to being selected for a graduate role.
I came away from the internship programme with a lot more confidence, which I've managed to carry through with me into the graduate scheme. It's the little things, like learning how to hold yourself in a meeting or present to a group, that are so important.
By the end of the summer I’d developed a clear sense of what I wanted to do with my career, but the main piece of advice I'd offer others is to make sure that you enjoy the experience. It’s a unique event in your life and it goes by so quickly – take the time to get to know people and make the most of the opportunities that come your way.