Michael Boutros, MSc Economics & Strategy for Business 2020-21, student at Imperial College Business School
Programme:
MSc Economics & Strategy for Business
Nationality:
Greek Cypriot
Education:

BSc (Hons) Business and Management, University of Kent

Company and role secured after programme:

Consulting Analyst, Accenture

About you

What work experience/internships did you have before beginning with Imperial College Business School?

Prior to commencing my MSc Economics & Strategy for Business programme at Imperial College Business School, I worked as a Business Analyst for 10 months where I zeroed in on corporate strategy and industry due diligence at PSW Group. PSW is a global multidiscipline services firm within the oil and energy sector with headquarters in Norway. During my undergraduate studies, I obtained a summer internship with Amazon in Dubai where I worked within the marketing and finance divisions.

Why did you decide to study an MSc Economics & Strategy for Business at Imperial College Business School?

I decided to study MSc Economics & Strategy for Business at Imperial because I was fascinated by how the disciplines of economics and strategy perfectly complement each other for pursuing a career in consulting. Having the opportunity to establish a foundational skillset through leveraging rigorous analytical thinking with a strategic focus is a unique skill to obtain. I was also impressed by the Business School’s focus on integrating innovation to achieve ‘intelligent business’ comprehension in a world that is driven by technology.

I firmly believe that Imperial has offered me the opportunity to differentiate myself as an individual that will have the ability to thrive at any global corporation. Moreover, Imperial’s impressive location in London provides the means to meet individuals from all over the world who share the same ambitions of studying at a renowned institution. Finally, the MSc Economics & Strategy for Business programme was the perfect choice for me as it encapsulates all the reasons mentioned above; reasons that justify its ranking as a top 10 institution globally across science, engineering, medicine and business.

Programme

What aspects of the programme do you enjoy the most?

I particularly relish the interactions and lifelong friendships I have made with the individuals in my cohort. As a Greek Cypriot with Middle Eastern roots, I have the unique opportunity to share the classroom with people from across the globe who possess varying interests, motivations, and aspirations. Studying my MSc at Imperial College Business School has exposed me to more than 35 nationalities, all of which come from diverse cultural backgrounds and share a common vision; which truly enhances my learning experience and leads to very stimulating conversations in the classroom. Finally, I am fond of the striking faculty at the Business School, all of whom are all experts in the fields of economics, strategy, finance, innovation, risk and entrepreneurship – which ultimately provides me with a distinctive knowledgebase in strategy and economics.

Which has been your favourite module so far and why?

Global Business. This module excellently explores strategy within a global context. It dove into deciphering the macro and micro drivers of globalisation through examining factors such as corporate strategy, economics, geopolitics and technology trends. The lecturer, Colin Love, was able to break down the fundamentals and skills required in assessing the impacts of globalisation. Completing this module solidified my genuine interest in securing a consulting role that would factor in various elements such as strategy, technology and economics.

What has been the most rewarding part of the programme?

The most rewarding part of the MSc Economics & Strategy for Business programme has been the opportunities it provided me with to grow as a young professional – as well as an individual. I believe that my skillset in communication, critical thinking, professionalism and leadership have all been enhanced during this programme. I am more capable and poised now with tackling both unexpected and challenging corporate settings.

What has been the most challenging part of the programme?

I believe the most challenging part has been adjusting to the COVID-19 pandemic and all the implications it has had for traditional teaching methods. Balancing group assignments, programme literature and career focus in a period that has been impacted by the global pandemic required efficient acclimatisation. However, Imperial provided the necessary assistance to make our goals attainable. Not to mention, I was part of a cohort filled with exceptional individuals facing the same hurdles, all of whom are adamant on making their Master’s experience a success.

People

How would you describe your cohort at Imperial?

Hard-working, multicultural and intelligent. It has been a privilege to get to meet everyone in my cohort and share our MSc journey together.

Did you have a favourite professor/lecturer and why?

My favourite professor was Pedro Rosa Dias who taught Business Economics. Pedro was truly passionate about microeconomics, particularly the disciplines focusing on the numerous methods that businesses use to respond to market incentives, consequences for market behaviour, the nature and role of competition as well as the role of innovation. He was passionate about the cohort conceptualising the material well and developing the ability to apply the content taught to real-world scenarios.

Opportunities

What has been the greatest opportunity you have had at Imperial?

The greatest opportunity I have had while studying at Imperial College Business School was the unique privilege of being selected as a Student Ambassador for the MSc Economics & Strategy for Business programme. As a Student Ambassador, I represent Imperial and help attract the brightest minds from across the world.

Which workshops, events or guest lectures at the school have been useful in developing your skills and knowledge?

Imperial provides an abundance of workshops, events and guest lectures. During the Spring term, a talent recruiter from Accenture gave a dedicated lecture to the cohort and provided us with advice and tips on what Accenture looks for in a successful graduate. It was a unique experience that would go on to play a crucial role in me securing my position at Accenture upon graduation.

What clubs, societies or other activities have you been involved in at Imperial?

I am currently a Student Ambassador, an active member in the Finance and Energy & Sustainability Clubs, and a member of Imperial College London Men’s Basketball 1st Team.

Have you had opportunities to work/socialise with students across programmes within the Business School?

Imperial facilitated various opportunities to meet students across all programmes within the Business School through clubs, networking events and meet-and-greet workshops. Specifically, the ‘Turn the Tables’ event, where we were put in breakout rooms on Zoom with students across all MSc programmes in the Business School. This helped kickstart rich conversations with students from across the globe, and ultimately led to meetings in person when London was out of lockdown.

How have you benefited from the Business School’s connection to the Imperial College London community?

It has been highly beneficial to be a part of the Imperial College London community. Imperial’s reputation speaks volumes and has been highly advantageous to identify with. As a student, I was granted access to Imperial’s vast alumni networks. I have been able to build great personal and corporate connections while obtaining key insights from different alumni around the world, who now work at leading corporations such as Bain & Company, BlackRock, and Accenture, to name a few.

Career

Have you received any job offers since commencing your programme?

I secured an exciting position as a Consulting Analyst with Accenture in the City of London. My role will entail consulting on business transformation, project management and leveraging complex strategy solutions to Accenture’s client base.

How did the services from Careers help your secure employment and help in your professional development?

Imperial College Business School Careers is very dedicated to supporting students with employment and professional development. Numerous career workshops were provided throughout the academic year with tailored advice and preparations for resumes, aptitude tests, interviews, assessment centres, etc. In addition, there were countless networking opportunities with alma mater from various industries, such as consulting, finance, banking and energy. Finally, I was able to establish a great relationship with my career consultant, who guided me through the process of strategising and executing my career aspirations.

London Location

Do you think studying in a central location such as London is beneficial for networking and career opportunities?

One of the core reasons I decided to do my postgraduate at Imperial was for the unique opportunity of living in the heart of the great city of London. I find it puts you in position to network with individuals from across the globe, all while being in close proximity to individuals and organisations who can shape your professional development and cultivate your career!

Where do you live in London and why did you choose to live there?

I chose to live in Notting Hill, and it has been a fantastic location to reside in to say the least. Being very close to Kensington Gardens was advantageous as it was a beautiful and short walk/bike ride through the park to get to the South Kensington campus. It also turned out that a significant number of people from Imperial live in this area, and love to hang out in the many bars and restaurants on Portobello Road.

When you’re not studying, what do you enjoy doing?

Apart from spending quality time with friends and family. I strive to maintain a very active lifestyle.. Additionally, I enjoy listening to stimulating podcasts. Finally, London has a great nightlife, providing the means of constantly going to different bars and restaurants in the city.

If you had to move to London for the programme, what have been the benefits and challenges of moving to London?

London is an incredible city, one that you can rarely run out of plans and activities to do. It is ideal for any individual that appreciates constantly trying new cuisines, museums, bars, and music. A challenge of residing in London would be the cost of living, I would advise prospective students to efficiently manage their expenses to avoid monetary complications.

Tips

What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying for the programme?

I would advise future applicants to diligently examine the MSc Economics & Strategy for Business programme and how it would contribute to their specific career aspirations. Spend time delving into the programme particulars and assessing how your career vision aligns with the programme literature. Finally, exercise your opportunities to reach out to Student Ambassadors and attend campus events/webinars offered by the Business School.

Interested in applying for a scholarship to this programme?

Programme:
MSc Economics & Strategy for Business
Nationality:
Greek Cypriot
Education:

BSc (Hons) Business and Management, University of Kent

Company and role secured after programme:

Consulting Analyst, Accenture