Year in industry with Deutsche Bank sets student Cybill Smith up for a career at Barclays

One of this week’s graduating students has expressed how pausing academic study, to spend a year working for Deutsche Bank, was an invaluable experience in terms of developing her professional skills and preparing her for the next step in her career.

After graduating with a 2:1 degree in Management Studies with Finance from the University of Leicester, Cybill will begin a highly sought-after two-year graduate scheme at Barclays.

“My year in industry was challenging, but worthwhile,” she said, “moving to Birmingham was a difficult decision as it was a new city to me, but I am glad that I did it. I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge and learnt so much about myself.

“Based in the Birmingham office of Deutsche Bank, I worked within the regulatory operations department, however my role specifically consisted of providing governance for the division. This included creating monthly business review presentations for my Director, creating monthly ERI's (environmental risk indicators) - a risk analysis matrix used by senior management across the division. Finally my role included quality assurance testing on trades. The role certainly improved my communications skills, as I was in regular contact with colleagues in London, Manila in the Philippines and Jacksonville, Florida.

“One of the standout moments for me would be working alongside my fellow placement students in a site-wide fundraising event specifically for the Birmingham Children's hospital. We successfully raised over £2,000, which the bank then doubled. Another was successfully meeting Bank of England regulatory audit requirements. This was a demanding task which enabled me to gain further knowledge regarding the trade lifecycle.”

After returning to University for her final year of study, Cybill has now been offered a place with Barclays on a two year rotational graduate scheme in banking solutions.

She added: “My year in industry has definitely prepared me for my graduate job, the world of work and adult life generally. I now consider myself an advocate for placement years and strongly recommend it to everyone!

“I'm really excited for graduation, it hasn't really hit me that I am no longer a student, however, I am sure I will feel very emotional once the graduation ceremony is over and I am leaving campus for good.

“The highlight of my time at Leicester would be my second year, as I became more involved with University by pushing myself out of my comfort zone and becoming the secretary of a society. I particularly enjoyed this year, made so many memories and ended the year on a high by gaining my placement year at Deutsche Bank. Overall I’m really going to miss my time at Leicester.”

Dr Chris Grocott, Lecturer in Management and Economic History and Corinne’s dissertation supervisor said: “Cybill's dissertation was brilliantly researched and based in solid management studies theory. It is one of the best dissertations I have read and invites us to think about how organisations can fail in their social responsibility towards people.”