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Alumni Spotlight: How Daniel Secured a Full-Time Job as a Trade Finance Analyst with Coronation Bank After His YOE Internship

Meet Daniel, he works with Coronation Merchant Bank, a leading Investment Bank in Nigeria and founding member of EnterpriseNGR. Daniel joined Coronation as a Youth of Enterprise (YOE) intern. He was retained to work full-time with the organization after his internship and has since then continued to grow his career. 

We asked Daniel to share his experience with the YOE community and here is what he had to say.  

Hello, my name is Daniel Daniel. I am a pioneer participant of the Youth of Enterprise Internship Programme and courtesy of the opportunity, I work as Trade Finance Analyst with an Investment Bank, Coronation.  

The conversation around high unemployment rate in Nigeria becomes more real as you graduate, serve, and start searching for a job. But I like to break the good news to you that YOE was created to address this problem – a programme whose mandate is to provide young people like me with the in-demand skills and experience that will not only makes them compete favourably but also employable in the job market.  

 Let me pause here and say a big congratulations to all YOE participants for being a beneficiary of the programme. You have been handed a huge opportunity to succeed and I believe you have what it takes to fly with it. 

 

What challenges did you face during the programme and how did it impact your growth? 

 

This programme comes with its own challenges but not the one that will break you. Rather, it is bound to shape you into a resilient individual and a goal-getter. I remember preparing for the assessment test, which is divided into two parts: the pre-assessment and the GAT. 

The big deal was the GAT. Wonderfully, YOE had a wonderful team that provided us with learning materials and amazing resource persons to walk us through the process. Passing the GAT was challenging because it can be tough if you don’t prepare very well and can be simple when you do. 

One trick that helped me to succeed during the program was connecting with other participants and learning together with them. Don’t snooze. This trick never gets old. 

Did the challenge end there? No. But I learned teamwork, communication, and grit and these qualities were key to my success during the pre-internship and later at my workplace. 

 

What role has the YOE programme played in your professional success and accomplishments?  

 

The privileges this programme afforded me already contributes to my many successes.  

First, I was posted to my desired organisation and YOE didn’t stop there but ensured all interns were better engaged, mentored and trained in their respective roles. 

I was retained at my organisation and offered a permanent role like I earlier stated. I have the opportunity of building a massive network of people who continue to contribute to my career and professional growth. Like they say your network is your net worth – nothing can be more true. 

The soft skills I learned during the pre-internship exercise allowed me to adapt quickly to the fast-paced demand of the financial services industry. I can go on listing more but let me assure you by stating unequivocally that I am what I am today courtesy of YOE. 

 

How have the skills and knowledge you gained during your internship helped you in your current role/pursuit? 

 

One of the things we were taught during our pre-internship stage was that learning never stops. This lesson made me keep an open mind, always ready to learn and welcome new challenges whenever such opportunity presented itself. Has that helped me become more resourceful and relevant at the workplace? Absolutely. 

 Let me emphasise the place of originality. You’ll always meet people who appear smarter than you, but you have to remain original.  

I understood my strengths and utilised them optimally. What am I trying to communicate? There will always be a place for you where nobody other than you fits better as long as you stay committed, simple, and original in your skills. 

 

 What level of mentorship and support did you receive from colleagues and leaders in your organization? 

 

I remain very thankful for the kind of support system the YOE team provides the interns. From organising sessions where industry experts come up to talk and encourage us to stay focused, to yielding themselves to any form of assistance they can offer you at your workplace so you can be comfortable. 

Wonderful individuals like Zahra, Oge and even the YOE CEO, Mrs Obi Ibekwe, literally held us by the hand all through the journey. They are passionate about the success of the interns. 

In addition, I have great support from my colleagues and seniors who continue to mentor and guide me on this career journey. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. 

Friends and soon to be colleagues, you have been given everything you need to succeed in life. Be open minded, ready to learn, teachable and resilient. Follow through the process and when you get to your respective organizations you simply work hard.  

You may fall short in some areas but that is the best time to learn. When achievement motivation goes sky-high, it can crowd out originality: Don’t allow your value for conventional achievement make you come to dread failure. Instead, aim for unique accomplishments. Be yourself and do not forget to stay healthy and have fun. 

 

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