"My dream is manifesting" - a UEL graduate's story

Meet the law student turned finance analyst who is watching his dream come to fruition.

Written by our journalist intern at Centre for Student Success, Karina Ginola.

Gabriel Osamor graduated from UEL with a 2:1 in LLB Law in June 2018 and has rocketed to success ever since.

Osamor is now working as a Client Reporting Trainee within the Global Client & Investment Reporting team for T. Rowe Price, an investment management company located in the heart of London.

Osamor’s role requires him to report on investment strategies for clients that come to the company looking for advice on where and how to invest their money. T. Rowe Price works with large companies and aims to create substantial financial returns for their clients.

In his job, Osamor interrogates data from both internal and external databases to produce client reports, and analyses large amounts of data to respond to stakeholder requests. He then updates clients on the performance of their investments.

The work environment is a fast paced one, with Osamor being required to hit targets in a timely fashion and maintain the company’s reputation by continually satisfying clients’ needs.

But Osamor is thriving in this environment. He says that the role has exceeded his expectations, giving him hands-on knowledge that he can use to progress into an equity analyst role, which he is aiming for in the near future.

Transitioning from a law student to working in asset management meant that Osamor had to go up against tough competition when applying for jobs. Other applicants who’d studied finance had, what seemed to be, an advantage over him. However, nothing could stop Osamor from letting his “true self shine”, showing how passionate he is about his field.

His love for corporate law gave him an edge on his competition as he had a new, fresh perspective on the field.

“It’s an amazing feeling waking up in the morning every day to do what I do. I’m learning different things to help my career grow,” says Osamor. “I’ve always wanted to work in the city… my dream is manifesting”.

When asking Osamor about the application process for his role at T. Rowe Price, he recalls it being something like “The Hunger Games” with the process starting with 35 applicants who were whittled down to 10 by the next day, and then again down to 4 by the third day.

“It was a very serious, tough application process. I had to do an online test, two assessments and then I was interviewed by more than 13 people from various departmentments.”

Once this gruelling application process was completed and Osamor had found that he was successful, he then found that he had five other - competitive - job offers. After considering the culture and values of each firm, he decided to stick with T. Rowe Price.

Osamor’s career journey started with a consultation with a career coach here at UEL at the end of his second year.

Before Osamor’s initial meeting he recalls being quite introverted, staying connected to his original group of friends, never really checking his student emails or going to career events set up by the university. But by the end of his second year, he knew that he had to start thinking about his future.

His career coach told him of the importance of networking and attending the university’s career events, and suggested that he find some hands-on work experience.

The first event that Osamor attended was an event set up to connect the mayor’s office with the university in order to create a sense innovation and hear the voices of the next generation. Osamor was chosen to be the ‘Mayor’s Entrepreneur Ambassador for UEL’ and ended up working and networking not only with higher officials of the university, but of the local government as well.

Osamor found that he had a knack for networking and it is something that he truly enjoys. He developed the ability to form meaningful relationships with important individuals based solely on trying to gain as much knowledge and experience as possible.

It was this ability to network that led Osamor to a professional work experience programme, which started soon after graduation. He attended an insight session and mock interview at Nomura, where one of the Vice Presidents was impressed with his professionalism and passion for the industry. This resulted in him securing the professional summer work experience in the Trade Settlements department of the bank.

“I find networking really important and a good way to grow. It’s a small world and you never know where you’ll run into people who can grow your career”.

Osamor also recalls a valuable piece of advice that one of his mentors passed onto him: make sure you are dressed appropriately.

He remembered this, and wore a suit and tie, when he attended the insight day at Nomura. While other graduates turned up looking informal, the way that Osamor presented himself led him to stand out in the crowd and led to the company taking an interest in his career.

But to dress the part wasn’t enough. Osamor knew that he had to deepen his knowledge of the stock market and commercial awareness if he were to be successful in his field, and credits the online firm ‘Finimize’, which focuses on educating readers on investments and the stock market, which helped him progress successfully. He stated that, due to immersing himself in ‘Finimize’, The Financial Times and The Guardian he was able to pass his CFA professional qualification nine months earlier than expected.

Of course, it wasn’t all plain sailing for Osamor. Once he had graduated, he found it challenging to manage people’s expectations and know the right thing to say about his switch to finance. However, Osamor found a way to connect his degree to what he is doing now, combine his expansive knowledge and use it to help him stand out from the competition.

When thinking back to his time at UEL, Osamor recalls it being a great establishment for diverse backgrounds that works to further students’ careers and offer as much support as possible.

UEL helped him to develop a good understanding of what he wanted to do and evolve as a person. Once Osamor knew that he wanted to commit to a job that involved helping people to solve challenging problems, he had a better chance of finding a role that was best for him.

Osamor has found the skills he obtained on his course to be incredibly beneficial: “Studying company law gave me a good understanding of shares and voting rights, which I’m currently doing now, and the ability to analyse and research from writing coursework and presentations”.

He has stayed connected to UEL by returning frequently for mentoring sessions with students. Due to his wide range of connections, he is now able to pass on valuable opportunities and connect them with people who can help propel their careers.

Osamor’s goal is to see himself become a professionally qualified equity research analyst and become one of the best in London. The way he’s working now, I can see him reaching that goal very soon.

Osamor is currently developing an advice and guidance blog for young people trying to reach similar heights. But for now, he leaves us with this: “Be yourselves in interviews. Show passion and find your niche. Go out [and] meet as many people as possible. You might not get a job through the meeting, but it will help you to gain experience and build relationships with people who will guide you to be even better”.

This interview was conducted in preparation for the Graduate Outcomes Survey, which asks alumni about their activities 15 months after graduation. Osamor has been working in finance and volunteering as a professional mentor. He has also been developing a professional blog to share tips on securing jobs in professional services.

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