Darryl Guy Murphy

Country: United Kingdom
Sector: Investment Banking
Job title: Managing Director Head of Infrastructure
Subject of study: Mathematics
Year of graduation: 1987
Type/Level of study: Post graduate

Current Employer/Organisation Name

Aviva Investors

What have you been doing since leaving Exeter, and what are you doing now?

I graduated 30 years ago and worked in civil engineering consultancy for 5 years but then moved to banking and the world of infrastructure. I have worked in this area for a range of banks, KPMG and now Aviva Investors.

Why did you choose this career? And what do you enjoy most about your work?

I moved to finance mainly for money (best not hide from that) but fell in love with infrastructure – the mixture of the technical, commercial, political and public good – it is intellectually very stimulating and I am proud to be investing into infrastructure that improves society.

Please tell us if you were a member of any societies, groups or sports clubs?

Volleyball mainly in University.

What did you enjoy most about your programme and what was the biggest highlight?

Looking back, it took a while to adapt from school but I found a whole new area of maths that suited me around applied maths, waves, meteorology and oceanography. My PhD experience was very enjoyable – not least a year in Australia with my PhD tutor.

What did you enjoy most about studying here?

The campus, independence and making friends – I still see my friends I lived with 33 years ago.

Why did you choose to study at Exeter?

It was a long way from my home in Leicester! My parents discouraged me from studying in London, I was rejected from Cambridge (mainly learning not to go out drinking the night before an interview) and Warwick was too close to home!

What skills and experiences have been most useful for your career?

Even at PhD – problem solving, not the content but how you go about it. I don’t do complex maths anymore but learnt the balance of using numbers in a way to understand problems.

What advice would you give to a current student who wishes to pursue your career?

it feels very different – I joined banking at 29 and realise I am very lucky. I am involved with grads and I can say – think broadly, academic qualifications are not so critical as to interest & enthusiasm. I really focus on how well people present their selves in terms of spoken/written styles which is key.

What are your plans for the future?

At my age it tends to be about thinking about life beyond a full time career! I have a 10 year old daughter though so that sets the horizon but there is no doubt I will remain focused on infra for many years yet!


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