December 02, 2011

Final Blog for WSPA – P1 Core Workshop 27/10/11

Final Blog for WSPA– P1 Core Workshop 27/10/11

Name of Tutor: Samena Rashid

Date of Workshop:Thursday 27th October

My Action Plan:

Over the past few weeks, I have been working on these points:

  • Time management skills

Over the past few weeks, my time management skills have vastly improved. As a result of this, I feel that the quality of my academic work has improved as I have not had to rush to complete deadines. Furthermore, I have actually had more free time to go to the gym or socialise and thus my work/life balance has noticeably improved. A key point still to work on is being productive in the mornings and getting up, as I still struggle to do anything before my first lecture of the day!

  • Developing Commercial Awareness

Today I attended the WBFS Barclays Capital Equity Capital Markets Presentation, where I learnt a great deal about the division, as well as a wider look at the current UK economic outlook and what it means for the stock market. I have also finished 'All You Need to Know About the City' and feel confident that my new-found commerical awareness will help in upcoming interviews. Yet, developing commercial awareness is an ongoing process, so I ensure that I regularly read the FT and the Gateway to keep on top of developments.

  • IT/ Computer Literacy

I am now half-way through the 10 lessons for the Microsoft Excel Specialist 2010 Qualification. I feel confident that I will be able to complete the remainder of the lessons over the Christmas break, and pass the test in January.

Thank you for reading my final blog entry,

Marc Newall, First Year PPE-ist, ID: 1101455




November 24, 2011

Second Blog for WSPA– P1 Core Workshop 27/10/11

Name of Tutor: Samena Rashid

Date of Workshop:Thursday 27th October

My Action Plan:

Over the past few weeks, I have been working on these points:

  • Time management skills

Using ‘Google Calendars’ has vastly improved my attendance to lectures and seminars, and ensured that I set aside enough time to achieve a decent work/life balance. Whilst I still sometimes have trouble getting up in the morning (I usually get up as close to my first lecture as possible...) I have realised I am quite productive in the evenings, so this is when I do most of my work. I also plan on attending the next 'P7 Organising Yourself and Your Time' workshop that fits with my new schedule!

  • Developing Commercial Awareness

I am currently halfway through reading 'All You Need to Know About the City 2011' and so far have learnt a great deal; Stoakes is particularly good at explaining the industry in a jargon free way. I have also been attending a number of talks and events via Warwick Banking and Finance Society. Last week, I attended at talk by George Berkeley, Chief Economist of Deutsche Bank, on the euro-zone sovereign debt crisis. I am also going to attend the WBFS Spring Internship Fair this evening and plan to speak with a number of representatives from investment banks, in order to gain their insight into the industry. Lastly, I recently made a profile on J.P. Morgan using their website and ‘insidebuzz.co.uk’ in order to better my knowledge of the firm. I thought that this would help me write a more specific cover letter when applying for their spring week, which I plan to send off soon.

  • IT/ Computer Literacy

I have worked through lessons 1 and 2 (out of 10) of the Excel qualification. So far, the most valuable thing that I have learned is how to use shortcuts to vastly reduce the time it takes to input data. I have also attended a ‘Computer and Data Analysis’ seminar, as part of my degree, which taught me a great deal about inputting equations into Microsoft Office software via MathType.

Thank you for reading my second blog entry,

Marc Newall, First Year PPE-ist, ID: 1101455

Second Blog for WSPA– P1 Core Workshop 27/10/11

Name of Tutor: Samena Rashid

Date of Workshop:Thursday 27th October

My Action Plan:

Over the past few weeks, I have been working on these points:

  • Time management skills

Using ‘Google Calendars’ has vastly improved my attendance to lectures and seminars, and ensured that I set aside enough time to achieve a decent work/life balance. Whilst I still sometimes have trouble getting up in the morning (I usually get up as close to my first lecture as possible...) I have realised I am quite productive in the evenings, so this is when I do most of my work. I also plan on attending the next 'P7 Organising Yourself and Your Time' workshop that fits with my new schedule!

  • Developing Commercial Awareness

I am currently halfway through reading 'All You Need to Know About the City 2011' and so far have learnt a great deal; Stoakes is particularly good at explaining the industry in a jargon free way. I have also been attending a number of talks and events via Warwick Banking and Finance Society. Last week, I attended at talk by George Berkeley, Chief Economist of Deutsche Bank, on the euro-zone sovereign debt crisis. I am also going to attend the WBFS Spring Internship Fair this evening and plan to speak with a number of representatives from investment banks, in order to gain their insight into the industry. Lastly, I recently made a profile on J.P. Morgan using their website and ‘insidebuzz.co.uk’ in order to better my knowledge of the firm. I thought that this would help me write a more specific cover letter when applying for their spring week, which I plan to send off soon.

  • IT/ Computer Literacy

I have worked through lessons 1 and 2 (out of 10) of the Excel qualification. So far, the most valuable thing that I have learned is how to use shortcuts to vastly reduce the time it takes to input data. I have also attended a ‘Computer and Data Analysis’ seminar, as part of my degree, which taught me a great deal about inputting equations into Microsoft Office software via MathType.

Thank you for reading my second blog entry,

Marc Newall, First Year PPE-ist, ID: 1101455

November 06, 2011

First Blog for WSPA– P1 Core Workshop 27/10/11

P1: An Introduction to Skills Development and the Warwick Skills Portfolio

Name of Tutor:Samena Rashid

Date of Workshop:Thursday 27th October

Summary:My primary reason for attending this core workshop was to better understand what the Warwick Skills Portfolio Award entailed. The workshop highlighted, among other things, the importance of self-awareness and reflection, and it helped me to identify some areas which I can improve upon (see action points). It also made me realise that, whilst the award itself will undoubtedly be a valuable addition to my CV, the broad range of workshops offer opportunities to develop both academic and professional skills, which I had not previously been aware of.

I found that the workshop was sufficiently detailed and provided a thorough introduction. In particular, I enjoyed taking the two questionnaires. The first, on learning styles, showed that I had a strong preference for 'Activist' learning, which has led me to change the way I study. Previously, I would read an article or chapter of a book and then assume that I had learnt it, whereas now I realise that active notemaking alongside reading is far more productive for me personally, even if it feels like I am taking longer. The skills questionnaire also helped me to evaluate my own strengths and weaknesses, and the results of this have helped me to identify my action points and also which other workshops to attend in the near future.

N.B. Apologies for the late first blog- I thought that 6th of November was the date I should submit my first blog, not the deadline!

My Action Plan:

Over the following weeks, I am looking to work on these points:

  • Time management skills

As a first year, I have found it quite a shock adjusting from the rigidites of school and home life, to university, where I must be completely independent. Initially, I struggled to organise my time, fell behind with work, and missed training sessions (usually due to sleeping in late!). In order to better keep on top of this, I plan to attend the workshop 'P7 Organising Yourself and Your Time'. In the meantime, I have set up an account on 'Google Calendars', and plugged in all my lectures and seminars, as well as time for gym, sports training, library, free time. This application sends me updates straight to my phone, and I have seen a huge improvement in my organisation already. (Bar getting in a muddle about the date to submit this blog...)

  • Developing Commercial Awareness

I plan on pursuing a career in the financial sector, specifically M&A in investment banking, yet in order to make this goal a reality I need to drastically improve my commercial awareness of the industry. The first steps I have taken in this regard is to sign up for a subscription to the Financial Times, through the Economics department, which I have taken the time to read most days. I have also been recommended two books by a friend on my course, ''All You Need to Know About the City 2011' and 'All You Need to Know About Commercial Awareness 2011/2012', both by Christopher Stoakes. These should arrive soon, and I will comment upon them in my next post.

  • IT/Computer Literacy

Connected to my above career goal, I also believe that I need to work on my computer skills if I am to secure the initial analyst position. One of the key specifications for this type of role is proficiency on Microsoft Excel, so I have signed up to the Microsoft Office Specialist Excel qualification through IT Services. I will update with my progress throughout this award. I plan to take the test in early January.


Thank you for reading my first blog entry,

Marc Newall, First Year PPE-ist, ID: 1101455


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  • Dear Marc Thankyou for this update. For your final blog entry can you expand on the above blog by wr… by Samena Rashid on this entry
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