Back story: Nihit Raj Joshi

Nihit Raj Joshi, postgraduate student at Queen Mary University of London and one of the top performing 2017 CISI Educational Trust Award winners, explains how education will help him to secure his dream career in wealth management
by Rosalie Starling

Nihit Joshi receiving his award from Clare Gore Langton, Chartered FCSI(Hon), chairman of the CISI Educational Trust
Education is the pathway to success. This is a notion embodied by Nihit Raj Joshi, a postgraduate student currently working towards a master of science in wealth management at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL). 

Nihit has always had a deep and resounding interest in the world of finance, with an academic and professional background in the area, but it was the “human element” that attracted him to pursue a wealth management career in particular. “I enjoy interacting with people and helping to address their needs,” he says. And that wasn’t the only draw. “Having lived in several different countries I realise that a career in financial services is applicable internationally. As these days professional mobility seems unavoidable, I have chosen a field where I know I can apply my skills no matter where life takes me.”
Hard work pays offNihit’s current programme at QMUL – a CISI Centre of Excellence – is comprised mostly of core modules, with only one elective. “The teaching is rigorous and expectations are high, but the main challenge has been managing my workload during exams.” Alongside his postgraduate programme, he is also planning on taking the CISI Portfolio Construction Theory exam, a unit within the CISI Chartered Wealth Manager qualification. Spending around half the day in lectures and tutorials, and the rest of his time studying with others, Nihit has enjoyed meeting new, like-minded people from around the world, calling this a “major highlight”. He also enjoys “taking part in optional modules that are directly applicable to the workplace”.
A valuable partnership
In May 2013, the CISI signed an agreement with the QMUL School of Economics and Finance recognising the university as a Centre of Excellence in the field of financial services. The current collaboration allows QMUL MSc Wealth Management students to graduate along with the CISI Portfolio Construction exam and the option to complete the CISI’s Chartered Wealth Manager Qualification.

The QMUL partnership is just one of many university affiliations where students at leading universities are offered the chance to sit an industry recognised CISI exam alongside their chosen degree, helping them to stand out when applying for work after graduation.

But the biggest highlight for Nihit this year was his announcement as a 2017 CISI Educational Trust Award winner. The rigorous award process is no mean feat. After receiving an Initial Postgraduate Award following his nomination by QMUL, Nihit was required to submit a personal statement and 400-word essay comparing the advantages and disadvantages between robo-advisers and human advisers, from a customer’s perspective. His piece was selected by the CISI – alongside just four other postgraduate and five undergraduate essays – prompting an invitation to the Educational Trust Interview Day in London, where students were given the opportunity to compete for additional financial awards. As one of the three top performing Educational Trust Award winners, Nihit was also invited to the prestigious CISI Annual Awards Ceremony for an award presentation, and the chance to network with practitioners from the securities and investment industry. 

Read Nihit's winning essay

The Educational Trust aims to reward students with a comprehensive understanding of the financial services sector, as well as strong communication, personal and relationship building skills, and the awards are designed to support the aspirations of each winner as they move towards their chosen career. For this reason, the CISI also offered Nihit one week of summer work experience in London with all expenses paid. “It is a tremendous honour and I was truly delighted to win. This recognition has given me a huge boost in terms of motivation and reassurance in my desire to work and succeed in the field of finance, and particularly in wealth management.” 
Looking aheadAfter completing his programme at QMUL, Nihit will approach smaller financial advisory companies and larger wealth management firms – focusing on internships, permanent junior financial adviser roles, or junior wealth manager positions. “Eventually I see myself serving a large client base, assisting those customers in achieving their financial objectives,” he says. Nihit is excited by the prospect of becoming a successful London-based wealth manager in years to come. “People working in this sector are frequently perceived as money-focused but, especially in London, financial services drive progress and innovation in many other sectors.” 

Nihit envisages a complete industry transformation in the future, with millennials in the driving seat. “Millennials will most likely lead to a total shift from traditional to digital outputs,” he says. With change already underway, educational methods face something of a makeover “because new tools and teaching methods are constantly required for education providers to keep up with the transformation”. 

Charities and groups such as the Educational Trust will help to ensure students such as Nihit are fully prepared for whatever the future may bring. 

About the Trust
The CISI Educational Trust is focused on developing transferable skills in students at schools, colleges and further education areas of the financial services sector, as well as working with young adults at apprenticeship and undergraduate levels.

The Trust currently supports initiatives in partnership with schools and colleges delivering CISI qualifications, CISI Partner Universities and CISI University Centres of Excellence, as well as the Hoare Nairne Scholarship for experienced industry practitioners who aspire to achieve the CISI’s Level 7 Chartered Wealth Manager Qualification.
Published: 03 May 2017
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