Optiver Graduate Profiles

Meet Optiver at the CDES Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths Expo!

Clara Todd

  • Graduate Developer
  • Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) Conjoint - Major in Geography, Specialisation in Mechatronics Engineering

Did your career plans change as you studied?
I came to the University of Auckland planning to specialise in Biomedical Engineering, thinking that a career in a medical field would be really rewarding. I chose mechatronics after some career advice from a family friend involved in prosthetics, still thinking about a future career in medical robotics. After stage 3, I applied for an internship at the Treasury on a bit of a whim, and ended up working there for the summer, where I really enjoyed the economics/finance side of things. After that I started to look at jobs that mix technology and finance.

Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years’ time?
I would like to have developed a solid set of technical skills, but have progressed into a management role which could give me a broader impact on the projects that the company does. I’d like to travel more, perhaps live in Europe for a bit, but at this stage in my career I’m just going to see where the opportunities that I get in the next few years will take me.

How valuable was your internship OR work experience for you as a student? How did this help you fine-tune where you wanted to head?
Extremely valuable. I got quite a range of experiences in my internships. I worked at a world leader in prosthetics, with truck automation and researched economic policy. Internships were great to try different fields without a lifelong career commitment; they gave me a taste of different company cultures, management styles and types of work, which all influenced my grad job applications.

Wil Undy

  • Trainee Trader
  • Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Science Conjoint - Major in History, Major in Statistics

Did your career plans change as you studied?
Originally, I was studying Law and Chemistry thinking I was going to become a patent lawyer. Four years and three degree changes later I’m now a trainee trader at Optiver. Throughout my degree my career plans were fluid, changing between the arts and science paths, and it wasn’t until my final year I finally decided what I wanted to do.

How valuable was your internship OR work experience for you as a student? How did this help you fine-tune where you wanted to head?
As a student I did a research project predicting Super Rugby with Te Pūnaha Matatini and also worked with the New Zealand Herald building a model to predict the 2017 general election. Both roles really helped me to decide my eventual career path. I realised I wanted to do something which involved statistical modelling but also with a competitive edge. They showed me what working in the field would be like and pushed me over the top in the decision between arts and science.

Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years’ time?
In five years I hope to still be trading at Optiver as I really enjoy the challenge of trading, company culture, and fast paced problems solving. In the longer term I can see myself going back to pursue a Masters and PhD in potentially statistics.