Former Abu Dhabi student shines bright on Times Square billboard in New York

Advait Arya appeared on a billboard throughout an entire day, showcased over 26 times for his mentorship services in November 2023


Nandini Sircar

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Supplied photo

Published: Sun 17 Dec 2023, 4:24 PM

Last updated: Sun 17 Dec 2023, 10:23 PM

A 19-year-old who studied in the UAE was recently featured on a massive billboard in central Times Square as one of the top mentors at a multinational boutique consultancy.

Times Square, situated at the heart of New York City, is famous for its iconic digital billboards and advertisements that display images of celebrities and a diverse range of well-known brands.

Advait Arya appeared on a billboard throughout an entire day, showcased over 26 times for his mentorship services in November 2023.

The young adult who was once a student of Raha International School in Abu Dhabi stands among the select few students securing offers from prominent consultancies and banks in the UK.

“In the first year after joining the university, I managed to secure internships for investment banking at Barclays Investment Banking London and EY Assurance London. These internships have an acceptance rate of less than two per cent, so they are very competitive. Since I had applied to so many places, I had learnt the entire application process and learnt what it takes to secure these sorts of internships,” said the LeapBeyond mentor.

The company spotted Advait after he put up his internship journey on LinkedIn. They asked the young adult to join their team as one of the mentors.

“So, LeapBeyond is all about helping aspiring students who wish to secure these internships by pairing them up with mentors who have already done so. That’s when they reached out to me and asked me to become a mentor. Obviously for me, it was a great opportunity, because I wanted to pass on all my learnings that I picked up during the application process to my peers. Hence, I joined the organization,” said the Warwick student who is pursuing Accounting and Finance.

Following that, the company showcased its top 10 mentors in Times Square. “They acquired a billboard and featured us in the heart of New York City, right in Times Square.”

Advait scheduled multiple call appointments with different students, extending support for their application processes, drawing from his own experience as someone who has walked the same path.

“Once I advertised this service on his LinkedIn, I received numerous call bookings, resulting in my recognition as one of the top 10 mentors.”

Explaining the application process which comprises several stages, the Indian expat said, “Initially, candidates are required to submit a CV and cover letter. Upon successful screening, they undergo an online assessment involving situational judgement, numerical, logical thinking, and IQ-based tests. Subsequently, there are two rounds of interviews. Upon passing these, candidates proceed to an in-person assessment centre at the office. Here, various evaluations like group projects, HR interviews, and director interactions occur. Successfully navigating through these stages leads to securing the internship.”

Looking back on this milestone Advait highlights how he grew up understanding that Times Square held immense significance as a must-visit in New York City.

He explained the experience was incredibly thrilling. “People were congratulating me. It was a proud moment not only for me but also for my family and friends. We were raised with the idea that Times Square is a big place and a tour destination in New York City. It’s a big thing, so it was exciting. I also had the opportunity to thank my parents as well as I name-called them in the video. My family was really happy as well,” he added.


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