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Future career plans - Internships at the ABI

Category: career journey, career path, regulators, Summer Internship, career aspirations, testimonial, early careers, Internship, ABI, Association of British Insurers, Regulation, women in insurance, Career and Talent Development, Career Development, Insurance, Staff Testimonial, career, Graduate, career plan

Early Careers

Armed with the wonders of video-call technology, we caught up with Juriyah and Alisha who joined the ABI for a two-week internship over the course of Summer 2021.

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We find out what it’s been like interning remotely, discovering the “behind the scenes” at the ABI and future career plans.

Juriyah worked with our Long-Term Savings team and one of our Proactive Action Teams (PATs) on a research project around Vulnerable Customers.

Alisha joined the European & International Affairs team. She worked on a research project to give the team a deeper insight into the UK Government’s trade priorities.

What sort of things have you been doing while you’ve been at the ABI?

Alisha: I’ve been doing a research project for the European & International Affairs team. I’ve learned how to research public information and compile it into a document. I’ve also been learning how the political context effects our trade agreements. I’ve been really lucky to speak to people from different sectors I’m interested in – press, public affairs, climate and motor. I’ve had a well-rounded experience and learned a lot about insurance.

JuriyahI’ve been working on my own project on vulnerable customers. What I will take with me is the work done behind the scenes and how the ABI leads on policy and works with the insurance industry. Seeing the behind the scenes has been such a useful and interesting insight to have. I’m really glad to have been working on it

Had either of you thought about working in insurance or for a trade body before?

JuriyahI wasn’t really thinking of it – I came to the ABI to find out what it would be like. Considering my educational, working background, I’d not been exposed to the financial sector before. [I was pleased to find out] the skills I have can be applied here.

Alisha: I didn’t know anything about trade bodies or the financial sector. It’s made me realise my degree has a lot more scope than I thought. The…internship [showed me that] that insurance can be really positive and can make a big social change.

How have you both found the onboarding process?

Juriyah: It’s gone quick but everyone has been so friendly. I found it very comprehensive

Alisha: I don’t think it would have been this easy if we didn’t have so much contact before the internship. It really helped. The inductions were really insightful.

Tell us about your team and what it’s been like working with them?

Alisha: It’s been a really unique experience, there’s only three people in the team and I’ve had meetings with all of them. It’s nice it’s a small team, its friendly and informal. I’ve been able to see them interact with other parts of the ABI and I can see where they fit within the wider ABI

JuriyahI’ve been working with the Long-Term Savings and a PAT. Its really interesting seeing the issues they cover and how it pertains to peoples’ daily lives and the policies that are put in place at government level. Everyone seems super passionate about their work, specifically on vulnerable customers. They are such a friendly group of people, I’m glad I’ve got to know them.

How have you found it completing an internship remotely?

Alisha: I’m not based in London, but I don’t feel I’ve missed out on interactions. At home, I’ve had solid blocks of time with different people, I think it worked out better for me as I’ve had more time to ask questions.

JuriyahI would agree - when it comes to interactions with people, you get those solid blocks of time that might have just been passing discussion in the office. They’ve been so useful. I still feel like I’ve got to know lots of individuals across the ABI.

What’s been your highlight and lowlight from your internship?

Alisha: My highlight would be learning so much and meeting so many people and knowing about a new career path. The lowlight would be that it was only two weeks!

JuriyahAgreed, the lowlight is that its only 2 weeks. The highlight is getting to know people and researching how they have an impact inside and outside the ABI. My project on vulnerable customers was so engaging [as well as] learning about the policies and processes behind this.

What’s your main take-away from your internship?

JuriyahFor me, its meeting other interns and learning about others’ educational backgrounds and how you should be open to any opportunity or sector despite your educational background.

Alisha: Through all my interactions [at the ABI], I’ve learned your career progression doesn’t have to be linear. It’s put my mind at rest about what I should do next.

Have either of you thought about what you’d like to do in the future? Has the ABI inspired you to work in insurance?

JuriyahThe ABI has raised my interest in insurance and the importance it has across the financial services industry. With my specific project, it’s raised my interest in policy and who contributes to shaping that. The policy and research aspects of the internship has been useful insight for my career.

Alisha: If anything, it’s made it more confusing. I thought I would get a job and stay there, but I’ve enjoyed my project so much that insurance is now something I’m considering. The experience I’ve had here has been unlike anything I’ve had before.

Apply for one of our Summer Internships 2022 

by Susan Abbott

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