Asset management internships can be an important step on the path to a career in the asset management world.
When to apply for an asset management internship
You should apply for asset management summer internships in the penultimate year of your degree for places that summer, as successful interns will be offered a place on the graduate scheme beginning the following summer after they graduate.
Structure of an asset management internship
Asset management summer internships usually last for 8-10 weeks. The length of your working day will depend on your role, but should be regular office hours in most cases.
You're likely to receive some initial training, and then be placed in a particular team.
You may rotate around different teams during your time at the firm or spend the majority of time working alongside the same team. In either case, most of the work you do will be similar to what you would do as a first year graduate recruit and is likely to be supplemented by further training.
You're also likely to receive regular feedback that will give you an idea about how well you’re doing.
5 things to know before your first day as an asset management intern
Be prepared for preparation work
Some asset management firms will send you exercises to be completed before you start your internship.
These aren’t designed to test your aptitude and see if you pass or fail, but to familiarise you with key concepts and tools you’ll need once you arrive at the firm.
Reach out to people in the industry
If you know anyone currently working in asset management, or have a friend who has done an asset management internship, it’s a good idea to get in touch and find out what you should expect.
Check if your parents and wider family know anyone too – even if all you get is the email address of a senior figure you’ve never met before, it’s nice to have a contact at the firm before you actually start.
Relevant reading will help you prepare
Take some time to go over any relevant notes and textbooks from your studies in the weeks before you start your internship. It’s also a good idea to read up about the asset management firm you’ll be working at and any recent developments in the industry – for instance in the Financial Times.
Don’t feel you need to cram lots of information into your head though, as that will just be counterproductive.
Take a notepad
Over the course of your internship, you will talk to a lot of people, sometimes about a specific piece of work, sometimes about more general topics.
While you might feel you can remember all the important things, carrying a notepad at all times means you can take notes of anything you learn and any advice you’re given. If you don’t, it’s likely to reflect poorly on you when you keep needing to ask for help with the same thing.
Get to know the other interns
Asset management firms usually split their interns up across their various departments so you won’t spend a lot of time working alongside other students.
Make the effort to get to know them outside of work and at firm-organised social events though, as having a network of available contacts across the asset management firm will make some of the work you’re given much easier. Swapping your experiences with each other will also help you get an idea of how the asset management firm functions as a whole.