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Photograph of Aamir Delawalla, an Information Management graduate standing in the new student centre at UCL's Bloomsbury Campus


Meet Aamir Delawalla, the Information Management graduate giving first-year students at UCL an exclusive introduction into the world of KPMG

Photography Dylan Collard at the new student centre at UCL’s Bloomsbury Campus

Sibling rivalry inspired Aamir Delawalla to study at UCL. “My older brother graduated from Imperial College, so I decided that if I was going to travel from Karachi to London to study then I had to go to one of its top universities,” the UCL volunteer says. “In Pakistan, we don’t have a system of internship programmes, so by the time I discovered the Spring Insight scheme for banking it was too late to apply”. Undeterred, Aamir worked hard to establish himself within the School of Management and made the most of the support structure, especially the help of Careers Consultant Mark De Freitas who coached him to secure a prime job at KPMG.

After attending a few UCL alumni events, Aamir was asked to speak to the first-year Information Management students about his experiences at KPMG. “In my talk, I casually mentioned that I might be able to offer some work-shadowing,” he says. “From my own struggles to get work experience and internships I knew how hard it could be – especially for foreign students.” He was overwhelmed by the response and immediately began the process of creating a UCL-exclusive pilot programme with KPMG. “We called it work-shadowing but the main focus of the three-day programme was to understand how the department works, understand our processes, get an insight into the company and encourage the students to meet and network with as many of our people as they could.”

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The pilot in 2019 was hugely impactful for both the students and KPMG. Aamir is itching to run the programme again in 2020 with plans to double the student intake. “UCL gave me so much support and coaching, that I really wanted to give something back,” he says. “And having invested so much in my education, I felt that it was important to continue to have a relationship with the university.” As for the sibling rivalry? “My younger brother has just started at UCL,” Aamir says proudly. “He’s enrolled on the same course that I did!”

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Portico Issue 6. 2019/20