Internship buddies find support in business world

Hong Kong, 30 Aug 2016

Getting a great job out of school or university requires more than just good grades. There’s also communication skills, resilience, personal branding and other behavioural skills to understand and apply.  

In recognition of this, and the particular challenges faced by students where university has not been part of their family’s background, 25 staff in Macquarie’s Hong Kong office helped provide four-week internships for two high school and four college students in August.

Ida Cheung, one of the six lead Macquarie mentors involved in coordinating the program in partnership with community organisations Project Share and Charitable Choice, said there was a noticeable change in the interns’ confidence and skills between the beginning and end of the internship.

“Four weeks may sound like a short time but we could really see a difference over that period,” Cheung says. “The best thing for me was the knowledge that they were able to improve their knowledge and experience about the business world that they would otherwise have no exposure to, as well as the behavioural skills that are expected.”

It was the third year Macquarie has partnered with Project Share with an internship for high school students, and the first with Charitable Choice for first-generation college students.

“The bonding that we saw between the older and younger students for the first time was a particular highlight this year,” Cheung adds.

“The sharing of their experiences and having a buddy of a similar age was helpful so they could talk about the challenges of working in this new environment inbetween the formal part of the experience.”

The six students were given different tasks to complete depending on their experience, including downloading and collating financial reports, inputting business data and assisting with internal wellness programs.

They were also given an opportunity to give back to the community by visiting local charity Crossroads, and helping sort through donated items for redistribution to people in need.

Image caption: The six students from Macquarie Hong Kong’s 2016 internship program in partnership with local community organisations Project Share and Charitable Choice.