Learn first-hand what an internship with financial services company Fidelity Investments is like from a computer science student.
It can be hard to know where to go looking for an internship. College life doesn’t always give you solid insights into how these programmes actually work, or where the best ones can be found.
On top of that, we’re all familiar with the discouraging trope of interns doing coffee runs and spending their days beside a photocopier. Thankfully, computer science student and intern at Fidelity Investments, Aoife Downey, told us that there are much more exciting opportunities to be found.
What are you studying in college?
I am currently studying a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in computer science and information technology at the National University of Ireland, Galway. I interned with Fidelity Investments as part of my third-year studies.
What drew you to Fidelity Investments when you were seeking an internship?
Another student at my college, who had recently completed an internship with Fidelity, spoke highly of their experience, so I decided to do some further research into the company. I was intrigued by the type of work they do in Ireland and how a financial services company is also making an impact on the technology world.
What expectations did you have before you began your internship?
Before I began my internship, I had hoped to gain hands-on experience working as part of an Agile team. My goal was to develop the skills I had been learning in college while also being exposed to new skills and technologies.
What duties and responsibilities were you given initially?
I first undertook a training course in order to learn Angular 5 and once I completed this I started developing on the team’s project. I was given duties and responsibilities similar to the other developers on the team, such as taking part in the Agile ceremonies and working on my own stories. Gaining these responsibilities from the beginning made me feel like a valued member of the team.
Did the scope of your work change as the internship progressed?
During my internship I became exposed to new technologies and was given the opportunity to work with them. My work enabled me to switch between different languages such as Angular 5 and Java 8. I got to experience working on three different projects, including two technology projects and an intern business project.
Can you describe a typical day in your role?
A typical day during my internship would consist of working on the stories which had been assigned to me and attending any necessary meetings. This would include developing code and reviewing other developers’ pull requests. Each afternoon my team held a daily stand-up video conference with our colleagues in America.
What key things have you learned during this internship?
I have learned what it is like to work as part of an Agile team in a fast paced and innovative working environment. I have developed many soft skills such as teamwork, communication, problem-solving and personal management. I have also learned how a project is developed and what the necessary steps are, such as development and quality assurance (QA) testing, in order to deliver the project to production.
Has this internship made you feel as though you’re on the right career path?
I can gladly say that this internship has made me feel more confident in my chosen career path. I was uncertain if I had chosen a path which would fulfil my needs while also providing me with new challenges. The internship has dismissed these doubts and has boosted my confidence as a computer science student.
Do you feel more prepared for working life following your internship?
I do feel more prepared for working life after I have completed my studies. It has given me the opportunity to see what it’s like to work within the computer science field and has given me more confidence in myself and my abilities.
Why should someone take up an internship at Fidelity Investments?
I would recommend an internship with Fidelity because they offer you a great opportunity to experience what working life is like. You are exposed to a range of technologies, business practices and self-learning opportunities which enable you to advance in your career. The opportunities for self-growth are endless and there is a supportive network of people which you can reach out to.