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Varun Manthapuri is a 3rd year Undergraduate pursuing a B.Tech in Civil Engineering.
Getting the Intern
Right after the end of my fourth semester, I had made up my mind to pursue my career in a non-core field. I had made this decision based on my lack of interest in my core (Civil Engineering) coursework and also a related academic project. Not being very enthusiastic about coding, my options were limited. Hence, I was inclined towards finance or data analytics.
In the sixth semester, I started getting shortlisted for a number of finance, retail interns. I was quite dejected after a slew of unsuccessful interviews. I was not very keen on research but had also applied for ISB, because of the standards ISB has and you expect quality learning there. I had high hopes for getting in, but the results came in and unfortunately my name wasn’t in it. This was when I went into the mode of mailing any HR contacts I could get my hands on. While waiting for their reply, one fine day I heard from an IC, who happened to be my wingie that I got in! Peace mode on 😀
The selection for ISB intern is purely based on a resume shortlist. There is no HR interview or CPI criterion as such. They look for well rounded profiles with preferable previous interest in finance. So make sure to highlight related courses or previous internships related to finance.
The ISB Campus
ISB does not provide food or accommodation to the interns. Being a Hyderabadi, I had no food or accommodation problems. My co-interns were able to avail a number of Paying Guest options close to the campus at nominal costs.
For lunch, we have good restaurants similar to Gulmohar on campus.The campus is beautiful with peacocks inside and signs like “ peacocks crossing, go slow “ along the roadside. The campus was set up in 2001 and is spread across 260 acres.The heart of the campus is the academic centre, which houses lecture theatres, classrooms, faculty offices, the learning resource centre (LRC) and a 500-seat auditorium. It has a lake side similar to IITB, but smaller. There are beautiful student villages for students and executive housing for staff.
Hyderabad is known for it’s food and the internship period coinciding with Ramadan is a blessing for non-veg lovers. Areas like Charminar, Golconda Fort, NTR Gardens and Ramoji film city are a must visit in the city.
The only thing to complain about the city is the traffic and lack of decent public transport. Metro is yet to fire up and the auto guys rip you off if you arent actually acquainted with the prices.. Ola comes to your rescue here, but city traffic takes your joy away.
Haleem is one of the best Ramadan delicacies hyderabad offers you. The demand for it goes nationwide. It should be on your list if you visit hyderabad. There are beautiful temples in hyderabad to like Birla Mandir carved out of pure white marble. The beauty of it is just unimaginable.
Work Space and Environment
I expected a rather serious working environment with less flexibility regarding the timings, dress code and other stuff because of the brand that ISB is. But day one surprised me in many ways. The research assistants we report to were very helpful, cool and flexible with us. There was no dress code, no hard deadlines, no fixed timings as such for us. We had deadlines easy enough to meet without the quality of work getting diluted.
We worked at the NSE- Trading Lab which is a part of Centre for Analytical Finance (CAF). Our lab has state of the art facilities like access to bloomberg terminals, SAS programming machines and other things good enough to get you acquainted in Analytics and Finance.
Internship – Work and Takeaways
We are a group of around 20 interns, who were split into groups and were allotted similar work. The way the internship worked is that, we as interns would be taught about finance and trading strategies from scratch and in return we were supposed to do research and data work for professors based on their requirement. They want people who get inclined to research by the end of the internship to hire them as Research Assistants in the future.
The internship was split into three categories broadly :
1) Trading Strategies based on research papers.
2) Financial concepts and softwares
3) Data work for professors
The first part involved reading up research papers, understanding the trading strategy, applying it to indian equity markets by programming in languages like SAS and SQL to validate these strategies. This covered about 50% of the internship time and learning.
The second part involved finishing basic finance courses in coursera, bloomberg market concepts and learning finance softwares like Thomson Reuters Eikon and Morning Star for practical application. This gave us an insight into financial concepts. This was about 30% of the internship time and learning.
The third part made us learn techniques like text scrapping, basics of R and python languages. This was about 10% of learning and time. The bland part of the internship.
Concluding Word :
The Intern ended with an amazing treat at Novotel, one of the finest hotels of hyderabad. It was a pleasant surprise for us and totally unexpected.
Overall I can say that this intern was a fruitful experience as it gave me an insight into research, that too in the field I wanted to explore. Being at home had its perks. ISB is an amazing place to study in, keeping in mind the amenities and the faculty.
I thank Insight for giving me this opportunity. Hope you had a nice read.