Alice Hendy

The most recent developments to take place within the Barclays Degree Programme are without doubt the emphasis placed upon trainees to experience role rotations outside of the branch network. So it was no surprise to learn of new opportunities from various teams across the business becoming readily available in head office.

Being born and bred in a small village just outside of Portsmouth, the thought of stepping outside of my comfort zone to experience the city lifestyle was a daunting yet exciting concept. I saw this as an opportunity to try something new, push myself to my limits, and develop myself both in work sense and as a person.

A specific role rotation opportunity arose working for the LifeSkills team; an up and coming area of the bank where emphasis is placed upon Barclays in the community and preparing students across the UK for the world of work. Having recently volunteered for LifeSkills events designed to teach students about interview skills and CV writing techniques, this opportunity interested me and was a role I felt I could gain a great deal of job satisfaction from.

When I was lucky enough to secure a role working for the LifeSkills team, I felt my time had come to step up and start a new chapter of my life. Not only did this involve the process of fitting into a new team and learning a new role, but also involved me moving away from my family and friends back home, and moving into a shared house with complete strangers!

My dad and I travelled up to the city on a very wet Sunday afternoon equipped with my crammed suitcases; the day before my first day. The nerves I experienced that Sunday evening were like never before. Will the new team like me? Will I cope living away from home for the first time? Will I be any good in my new role?  So many questions requiring answers that only time would tell.

Experiencing London with very few contacts and only a small village background is certainly different! In truth, the new role has become an integral part of my focus and my drive.  I am so fortunate to say that I have been lucky enough to secure a role where I really feel like I am part of a team, all working together to meet a common goal; helping young people achieve their dreams.

Now, my Sunday evenings are not filled with fear and nerves, but excitement for the week ahead, and a determination to make a real difference to my new team. Life in the “big smoke” is certainly a learning curve, but a learning curve I am thoroughly enjoying so far.

A new chapter in my life has well and truly begun, and I have Barclays to thank for the transition I am currently experiencing as part of my development on the Barclays Degree Programme.