DMU's Suleman lands coveted placements to help him set his career path


Suleman Rafiq is planning to jump ship. He’s currently a words man, but he’s plotting a switch to numbers.

The De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) student has recently finished a year’s placement with a Japanese technology firm and has moved swiftly on to land an internship at a financial services giant.


That’s no mean feat for an English student who found himself in direct competition with business studies, maths and economics students for coveted places in both major companies. 

Suleman, from Yorkshire, spent a year in London and Bracknell, Berkshire working with Fujitsu.

“It was a generic business internship, so I made it what I wanted to be. It wasn’t strictly structured.”

The 21-year-old is currently in the middle of a nine-week internship at insurance company Allianz, learning the ropes in risk and underwriting at their offices in Leeds.

“I’m from Huddersfield, so it’s ideal for me,” he says. “It’s all about enhancing my CV.


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“To get in as an English student is quite difficult. You have to prove yourself.  After I applied I had a numerical test, a verbal test, a logic test and a situational test, a telephone interview with technical questions about insurance and financial services, and an assessment day with another interview.

“The internship is really good. I’m really enjoying it.”

Suleman is on course for a First in English after his first two years at DMU, so why is he looking at such a dramatic switch of direction?  

“I’ve always been good at English,” he says, “but when I came to university, I had no idea what I wanted to do for a career. When you’re 17 or 18, you don’t necessarily have that sense of direction.

“I started looking around at available internships when I was in the first year, and I found financial services fascinating. In times of political and economic turbulence, there is a tangible effect on financial services. That’s interesting.”

“But I’ve really enjoyed being at DMU. I’m going to stay on and do a masters.”

In English?

“In Business and Economics,” he says.

Posted on Thursday 3rd August 2017

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