2025 Foundation Scholar Blog – Emma Dullaghan
Formally established at the end of 2016, the 2025 Foundation aims to identify and support talented young people who would benefit from financial and other support to start to pursue a career in banking. The Foundation has been set up in anticipation of the Chartered Banker Institute’s 150th anniversary in 2025 and is aligned with the original aims of the Chartered Banker Institute - the promotion of education and development of young bankers entering the profession.
The Foundation’s aim is to open the opportunity to pursue a career in banking to those who would not otherwise have this opportunity or who would not otherwise consider such a career. Put simply, the Foundation’s aim is to change lives.
Hear first-hand from one of our scholar’s Emma Dullaghan about her experience.
1. How do you feel about securing the support from the 2025 Foundation?
I was elated when I found out that I had been offered the Scholarship as I am aware of the fantastic degree of support that being a scholar will bring me. The financial support is an excellent thing to know is there and will alleviate some of the pressures I would have felt without having it in place as now I do not have to worry about working to the extent it interferes with my studies as I have faced this problem before. I am excited about all the potential learning opportunities that I can gain from the programme. The scope for both personal and professional development is something I look forward to embarking on. Becoming an affiliate of the membership, has allowed me to gain access on current important issues that complement my studies. The Scholarship has been an investment in my education that I am humbled by and has given me an extra boost of drive and determination to create a fully rewarding educational experience for myself. I hope that through becoming a scholar at this present moment and an affiliate member, that one day I will be able to sit my professional banking qualifications and one day become a fully qualified member and maybe even one day a mentor to someone who is in my shoes today.
2. What impact do you think it will have on your future/career?
I am excited to discover the opportunities that will arise from becoming a part of the Foundation. I am proud to be a 2025 Scholar and believe it will have a positive effect on my career prospects as becoming a Scholar also meant I have become an affiliate member of the institute and so now have access to online materials however furthermore, I am well aware of the importance of networking and being a scholar will give me the chance to attend events and meet people working in the sector. I feel that when I apply for my first job in the banking industry that being able to say I am on the programme, this may make me a more attractive job candidate, as well as my mentor being able to assist me with preparing for interviews. The reduced financial constraints that the scholarship has given me, I can have more time for studying and learning.
3. How did you find the process of applying for funding?
I am on the Journey to Success which is a Scholarship program run by The Robertson Trust and so I was approached by the trust and told about the 2025 Foundation and asked if I would like to take part, the only step I has to take was to sign up for this by completing a form which was simple to navigate and complete.
4. Why do you think the 2025 Foundation is important?
I believe the 2025 Foundation is important as it can open new doors for people who otherwise may not have thought it was within their means to pursue a career in this sector. Having connections is integral for many students in receiving internship offers and graduate jobs however, coming from a certain socio-economic background, these opportunities are limited. This is a competitive field and having the advantage of being able to meet contacts at various social occasions and events is an exciting prospect. There are barriers to education financially and academically for students from disadvantaged backgrounds and Scholarships like these can help to break down these barriers, empowering students to know they have the skills and drive to succeed. Having the chance to receiving mentoring from a professional working in the field you want to go in to is an invaluable asset which without the Foundations support I would not have.
5. How important is it for you to have a mentor?
Having a mentor allows me to receive unbiased, constructive feedback from a different perspective than I would get from anyone else I know. My mentor has a breadth of experience and knowledge on topics that otherwise I would not have access to, and they can give me personalized guidance on what I am currently doing and steps I can take to further my career. Having a mentor helps me to know what to work on to further my personal development by giving me motivation and encouragement. My mentor has let me sit down and work out what my strengths and weaknesses are and ways I can work on these areas to achieve my goals which is something that is extremely beneficial to me in a time where I am just beginning to embark on my journey in a career in financial services. The one to one support that a mentor allows you to have is advantageous in enabling me to discover which career options are available in banking and how I can begin to seek out how I can start to take the first steps to get where I want to be.
To find out more about The 2025 Foundation, click here.