In 2016, the Monaco government decided to give a boost to work-study programs in the finance sector.
For several years, work-study programs have played an important role in many sectors of the Monaco economy. Work-study programs are a way for young people in Monaco and neighboring communities to discover different types of work environment by working in companies in Monaco, while continuing to develop skills through tailored dedicated programs.
The Banking Sector has decided to get in on the action too, using work-study programs as a way of identifying local talent and supporting its development within the Monaco financial sector.
In 2016, the Monaco government decided to give a boost to work-study programs in the finance sector: working in tandem with the AMAF, it gave the green light to the International University of Monaco (IUM) to develop an ambitious work-study program aimed at tackling the future challenges of the Monaco Finance sector. The 3-year “Bachelor’s in Banking and Financial Services” was born.
A program for the future
The IUM’s initial challenge was to analyse the future needs of the Monaco Finance and Banking Sector, in close cooperation with banks operating out of Monaco, the AMAF and the Employment Service. Using this analysis as a starting point, the IUM has designed a training program for the careers of tomorrow. The program is rooted in a few basic principles:
• A solid technical foundational to support the professionalization of financial sector players
• An emphasis on human qualities: professional behavior and best practice, quality of of service, written and verbal communication.
• A bilingual program in French and English to better serve an increasingly international client base.
An initial class of 14 joined the program in September 2016, obtaining placements in seven firms in the Monaco financial sector. Students found jobs in support roles in a variety of departments, from compliance to sales teams, through risk management and asset engineering.
An intense year!
In practice, during this year-long apprenticeship, students work three days a week in their respective institutions and spend the last two days of the week at the IUM, where they receive 6 hours of training a day on average. The curriculum includes a wide variety of classes, covering financial calculations, sales negotiations, banking operations, sector regulations, financial markets, and English, to name just a few of the subjects. Furthermore, students are regularly invited to conferences organized in Monaco and, at the IUM, can attend talks by financial sector workers on specific themes such as the impact of digitization and Fintech companies, customer relations, etc.
Furthermore, every student is assigned a work placement mentor, who is generally a department manager at the bank where they have been placed. The mentor’s responsibility is to support the apprentice throughout their placement, helping them to fit into the teams already in place as
smoothly as possible and offering them advice throughout the year. Finally, every student must submit a written work placement report at the the end of the program, which is followed by one of the high points of the course: a viva delivered to a jury made up of members of the employment service, IUM teaching staff, and the student’s employer.
In the end, this first year delivered on all its promises, with very positive feedback from both students and their employers. More than anything else, it has been an opportunity for a discussion among Monaco financial sector players to put in place an additional asset for the long term development of its financial industry.
Written by Dr. Gregory Moscato, Director of the MSc in Finance
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