Alum of the Month
Mary Catherine Horne
August 2013 Intake
What and where did you study before your Mountbatten internship?
I studied History and Political Science at Sewanee: The University of the South
What made you apply for the Mountbatten programme?
Since I was a college athlete, I didn't get the chance to truly study abroad while in undergrad. I took two summer course trips - History of WWII and Economic Development of China and Thailand - that opened me up to the idea of spending time abroad following graduation. I learned about the Mountbatten Program through a family friend and was instantly intrigued. An opportunity to live, study, and work abroad for a year sounded like the perfect plan for my "gap year" between undergrad and law school.
Describe your placement.
I was placed in the Royal Bank of Scotland as an HR Generalist, specifically with the Markets & Investment Banking Redundancy Team. After about five months on the Redundancy team, I transitioned to working with the Markets & Investment Banking Employee Relations Solicitors. After starting on the redundancy communication and execution side of the table, transitioning to the business case side of the table was eye opening. Seeing the thought process and cases presented to the leadership committee gave me a greater understanding of the inner workings of the firm and financial services as a whole.
What was the highlight/most memorable moment of your working experience during this year?
Getting to have a seat (albeit small) at the table with the Markets and Investment Banking leaders during the business case meetings is definitely a highlight. I learned so much listening to their reasoning for certain decisions. It also gave me the confidence to speak up in situations where I may have felt out of my element.
What was the social highlight/most memorable moment during this year?
As a tennis player, being able to queue for Wimbledon and see Venus Williams on Court 3 is something I will never forget. I also had to take a 2-weeker from RBS and I spent those two weeks travelling around Eastern Europe and Italy by myself and there's something magical about travelling by yourself in a foreign country. I loved all of my trips while in London with my friends, but being able to take your time and do whatever you feel like in the moment, instead of trying to pack in everything in a 48 hour window, is refreshing.
Please share a little wisdom/philosophy that you acquired during your internship.
Sometimes you just have to grin and bear it. It's rare that a role will have everything you want or check all of your boxes, but having the adaptability to role with the changes will take you far. But at the same time, have the courage to stick up for yourself and don't be afraid to have a voice for yourself.
If you could change anything about your internship, what would it be?
I don't think I would change anything. During the internship, I would have told you otherwise but reflecting on all of the experiences and time there, I realize that I wouldn't be where I am now without those push moments or stretch assignments.
What happened after completing the year - what did you do next?
I was very fortunate that I had a job lined up with Bank of America in Campus Recruiting prior to coming back to the States. So after a quick two weeks reuniting with friends and family across the States, I started with the Technology Campus Recruiting team in Charlotte, North Carolina. I also immediately started training for a marathon (and constantly heard from disgruntled friends about never seeing them after having been gone for a year).
Where are you now in your working life and what do you do?
Four years later and I am still with Bank of America Merrill Lynch, now in New York, working in Global Markets Campus Recruiting. I am in my fourth role at the bank and have enjoyed getting to work with different areas and programs. I appreciate that the bank realizes the potential of their employees, sometimes before we realize it ourselves, and continues to promote and offer new opportunities as we grow.
Do you have any future plans that you would like to realise & what are they (career & social)?
I've done a horrible job at travelling post-Mountbatten, and this is something I plan on changing. I went to Kenya this past summer 2017 on a mission trip with my church and I want to continue to be involved in mission work, both at home and abroad.