Maggie went to Cambridge as an international student to study Natural Sciences in 2015. She’s now a first-year actuarial analyst at Willis Towers Watson and is part of the Property and Casualty/General Insurance team. We caught up with Maggie to find out more about her graduate scheme and top tips for bright members.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background?
My name is Maggie and I came to Cambridge as an international student to study Natural Sciences in 2015, at Downing College. Throughout my time at Cambridge I largely studied Biochemistry and Pharmacology modules, although also took modules in maths, statistics, and coding, which really helped me get to where I am today - a first year actuarial analyst at Willis Towers Watson.
What's been the most valuable part of the graduate scheme so far?
I am part of the Property and Casualty/General Insurance team of the office and work largely on reserving projects. The work is challenging, but it is also very satisfying, and I get the impression that this will continue even after I have been here for years. I do most of my work on Excel, however, I have also been learning how to use the wide range of company-produced programmes to help make my everyday work better.
Although the learning curve has been steep, the team structure of individual projects means that there is always someone happy to help if I have questions, and I feel like I have progressed significantly despite only having been here two months.
I also already feel like my work here is of value: I can see the effects in the final deliverables my team produces and have already been asked to accompany my teams to two client meetings (and was given the opportunity to present in one of them!).
It is so rewarding to feel that my work is making a difference even at this early stage and to feel like I am consistently progressing. Additionally, even though work can be intense, each office organises regular social events (both per office and inter-office) which helps keep things fun and allows people to get to know each other better.
Would you recommend an Internship with Willis Towers Watson?
Although I joined as a graduate analyst, Willis Towers Watson also offers an 8-week internship programme for students in their penultimate year of studies, which many of the graduates were part of. I would strongly consider applying for the internship role if possible, simply because it will give you a greater insight into what being in an actuarial role is like and because the interns gain so much knowledge during their time at the company.
How did you find the assessment process for the graduate scheme?
If already in your final year, definitely look to apply for the graduate roles, which are open for applications in the last few months of the year – the application process is well organised, and although the assessment day is quite full on, it is very friendly and informative. As well as the interview and exercises, there are also business presentations and even an office tour at the assessment day which helps to bring to life what it’s really like to work here.
Additionally, if you feel like you aren’t ready to leave Cambridge just yet, there is an office here (in addition to London, Reigate, Manchester, and other UK offices).
How has your experience been overall?
Overall, my experience with the company so far has been overwhelmingly positive, and I would strongly recommend anyone with a mathematical or scientific background to consider applying for either the internship or graduate roles.
If you want to learn more about a career at Willis Towers Watson and explore their live opportunities, click here.