Marie-Therese Kerr

2023 Morgan Stanley Sales and Trading Summer Analyst

Final Year BSc Hons Mathematics, Statistics and Finance

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I was first introduced to AmplifyME through their Finance In Practice Bootcamp when I was in my third year of studying Maths, Statistics and Finance at the University of Strathclyde. At that point, I remember feeling overwhelmed by the many graduate opportunities I had considered. Coming from a cross-faculty degree, I weighed up several different career pathways that touched on various aspects of my academic background. Although there were many options to consider that made use of the quantitative skills I had developed at university, I lacked a feeling of curiosity and excitement when hearing about the day-to-day of many roles. I found that there were many other factors that were equally important to consider in combination with what I had learnt at university when searching for opportunities.

Having always been extroverted in nature, I thrive in environments where I can collaborate with other people. Additionally, having competed in debating competitions throughout high school, I have a strong interest in world events and am most fulfilled when I can use my analytical skills to add colour to numbers and statistics. Prior to Amplify, I had struggled to find exciting prospects that were suited towards my specific blend of interests.

The bootcamp has been so pivotal in defining my career ambitions. Despite being intense, I came away from both the sell-side and buy-side simulations instilled with a sense of excitement for future opportunities post university.

Throughout the sell-side simulation, we had the opportunity to interact with ‘clients’ to fulfil orders and adjust prices based on quick analysis of market news whilst managing risk. A career in financial markets felt like the perfect blend of quantitative analysis and interpersonal skills that I had been seeking.

I was thrilled to continue my interest in financial markets through a Sales and Trading internship with Morgan Stanley last summer. Having been recognised as a high potential candidate by AmplifyME, I had the opportunity to compete in the Global Markets simulation which was sponsored by Morgan Stanley. As a result, I then ended up applying to Morgan Stanley's sales and trading internship and received an offer after being invited to an assessment centre. The simulations really are what you make of them, and the opportunities that can become available to you when you engage are amazing. I am incredibly grateful for the amazing support and guidance I received from the team which was vitally important before and throughout the application process.

For me there was a positive and tangible outcome to be had from the simulations in that I found a career that I am really excited about and have an amazing opportunity to explore this interest further. However, I would encourage students with all interests to take part in the simulations because I think having clarity on whether markets are of interest to you can be just as valuable in what can often be an overwhelming career search. Additionally, I found that the practical experience that the simulations provided really improved my confidence in applying the knowledge I had learnt throughout finance classes within the business school to real world events.

I recently wrote my dissertation on pricing efficiency across European equity markets – an interest that stemmed from my initial experience of markets with Amplify and was developed through my own further research. I think that the Bootcamp provides an added layer of practical experience that pairs well with many of the finance classes offered by the business school, and so I think it can be a useful experience regardless of whether you have a career pathway in mind already.

Overall, I think that the simulations can be positive for every student, and there are so many ways to gain from the experience which can be enhanced through engaging and showing curiosity. I am really looking forward to my internship with Morgan Stanley and feel very grateful for the amazing opportunities that have presented since my experience with AmplifyME.

Above all else, it has been amazing to find a career that I am truly excited to explore and I would be more than happy to discuss my experience with any students who are interested!