Faton Sulejmani, MSc Finance 2020-21, student at Imperial College Business School

Programme: MSc Finance

Nationality: North Macedonian

Education: BSc Economics and MSc Statistics, Ss. Cyril and Methodius University, Skopje

About you

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

Preceding my current Master’s at Imperial I was working at the Ministry of Finance of North Macedonia in the department for debt management as an Associate for Risk Analysis and Public Debt Management Policy. Moreover, I have been actively engaged in the civic sector in my country holding positions as a Project Manager and Researcher. I also completed an internship in assurance at EY where I was recruited as a part of the EY Young Potential Development program.

Why did you decide to study MSc Finance at Imperial College Business School?

I was attracted to the reputation of the programme and it’s alignment with the latest trends in the industry. It’s a highly quantitative programme which is the best fit for students seeking a successful career in the finance industry. I saw the Master’s at  Imperial as the best investment for my future career. Also, the superb career support and broad range of electives offered which offer specialisation but also much-needed flexibility in a fast-changing world.

Did you receive a scholarship?

I am a Chevening Scholarship holder, which is the UK government’s international awards programme aimed at developing global leaders. Aided by the partial contribution of Imperial to the scholarship, it has enabled me to experience the exquisite quality of education and the motivating learning environment at Imperial, as well as benefit from the inclusive broad network of Imperial and Chevening alumni which will be a great asset for the achievement of my future career goals.


What aspects of the programme do you most enjoy the most?

The modules in the MSc Finance programme are structured in such a way that they provide the theoretical aspect of finance and application at the same time. They also offer stimulating individual work and help to develop teamwork skills in a challenging way that brings out the best of you. Additionally, the programme has a wide variety of electives where anyone could find modules that would suit their future career plans, all the while by being delivered by lecturers with experience in world-leading companies.

Which has been your favourite module so far and why?

It’s hard to choose one module since each of them has had a unique and impeccable way of delivering the material. However, I would note Corporate Finance as one of my favourites. It was challenging but also very satisfying thanks to the way the theoretical part was covered by a real-life problem, which enabled me to grasp even some of the most complex concepts in a very enjoyable way.  

What has been the most rewarding part of the programme?

I would most certainly say the opportunity to be in a surrounding of highly motivated classmates, which especially comes to light during and after classes, providing intellectually stimulating discussions. I am highly confident that being part of such a cohort is an opportunity for me to transform and develop as a person and a professional.

What has been the most challenging part of the programme? 

The programme in itself is designed to be very challenging and get the best of out of our abilities.  Having a large amount of coursework while dealing with the challenges of teamwork, makes it necessary to be highly efficient and organised, which in my case has become a truly transformational experience as I am highly confident it will help me greatly to realise my career goals.

Did you benefit from our affiliation with the CFA?

Of course, studying in a CFA affiliated programme has proven very beneficial and coincides with my plans on taking the CFA exams. Moreover, presented with a wide range of resources and scholarship opportunities for the exam is another reason for me to believe in the success of such an undertaking in the future.

How have you found the multi-mode teaching delivery?

It has been a really challenging year for all of us considering the situation with the pandemic, but in all senses, the multi-mode delivery has never failed to ensure the best possible experience for me. We had a very fruitful blend of remote and in-person teaching which proved very successful to me.


How would you describe your cohort at Imperial?

A very diverse group of young talented individuals with clear career plans. I believe that the opportunity to be part of such a group will be reflected in very valuable friends and connections in the future.

Did you have a favourite professor/lecturer and why?

Choosing among such qualitative professionals and lecturers with strong academic backgrounds and industry experience is a very hard task to undertake. I can say that in every lecturer and module I can recognise the similarity and uniqueness i.e. similarity in high-quality teaching and uniqueness based on their background and experience.


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

Access to a wide range of resources, support, and events that Imperial has to offer to students has been a great opportunity to develop myself as a professional and a person.

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

I have participated in numerous events organised by the programme team, Careers team as well as the Finance and Consulting Club which I am part of. I believe that other than a huge number of motivational presentations, the events held by the Careers team have helped me to develop and strengthen skills which will help me be more impactful as a professional, leader, and person in the future.

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

I am a member of the Consulting and Finance Club which allowed me to engage and be part of events with some of the industry specialists and discuss the recruiting process as well as general trends in the industry.

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

Even though we have gone through a very challenging period caused by the pandemic, where socialising has suffered the most due to imposed restrictions, the multi-modal delivery and access to the campus have ensured that we had the chance to socialise and work with students across programmes. Also, living in the student accommodation at Imperial’s White City Campus has served as a great environment to connect with many postgraduates from various programmes.

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

Being part of such a vibrant and bright community gives a great deal of satisfaction and privilege. The large alumni network of leading professionals proved as a great way to interact and connect with professionals from the industry who are always open to provide valuable insights for their fellow Imperial graduates.


What are your future career goals and how have they been realised since being at Imperial?

My goal is to contribute to the development of financial markets in my country and the South Eastern European region, recognising the need and the opportunities to do so. Imperial has equipped me with the necessary in-depth knowledge of finance which would be of crucial importance in my future endeavours in asset management and consultancy services in the region and broader.

London Location

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

Living in a vibrant and diverse part of London has been a great opportunity in developing connections and networking with the best current and future professionals in the industry. London has always so much to offer in every possible aspect and as such, I believe that the location of the College has contributed to equipping with the necessary skills and way of thinking needed in any future opportunities.

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

I live at the postgraduate accommodation at Imperial’s White City Campus. Living at a campus full of innovation alongside many fellow Imperial postgraduate students from different fields has been a very enjoyable experience. Even though the pandemic affected the opportunities for networking, there has been a lot of socialising, fun, and insightful discussion with bright people from all over the world.

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

In my spare time, I prefer spending my time by keeping a healthy lifestyle through night runs which have been a routine especially in the times of the pandemic when the gyms and other indoor physical activities have been restricted. Moreover, during the weekends the beautiful parks of London have been one of the frequent locations I have visited.

What have been the benefits and challenges of moving to London?

Moving to a city with such a big number of different communities which feel as one has shown the true value of diversity as a way of life. It is greatly beneficial to live in one of the world’s greatest financial centres, with a lot of history and culture which have provided me with the opportunity to experience the full benefits of studying and living here.


Looking back to when you were applying for the programme, did you attend any online webinars or on-campus information sessions?

Unfortunately, I was not able to attend the online nor the on-campus information sessions, but I would highly recommend researching all of the information available on the web page, reach out to alumni and contact the very helpful Imperial team who helped me a lot. I would also strongly recommend the online webinars which have proven very helpful to many colleagues of mine who have attended during the recruitment process.

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

Get ready for a very challenging and life-changing experience. Consult the programme materials and make sure that finance is what you are passionate about since that is a guarantee for a successful and fantastic year at Imperial. I strongly recommend applying to anyone who is enthusiastic and ready to delve into the complex world of finance, where MSc Finance at Imperial would most certainly be the best investment.

Interested in applying for a scholarship to this programme?

Programme: MSc Finance

Nationality: North Macedonian

Education: BSc Economics and MSc Statistics, Ss. Cyril and Methodius University, Skopje