What work experience/internships did you have before beginning with Imperial College Business School?
Prior to coming to Imperial, I had internship experiences in various roles including marketing, accounting and finance. In my role as the Finance & Admin Intern at KJR Australia, I maintained timely updates and analysis of company accounts, financial performance, and CRM systems, which led to more efficiently run company finances and operations. The Business Development Intern role at an e-commerce startup allowed me to attain greater competency in analytics, marketing, and effective communication through analysing company sales data and market trends, liaising with prospective business partners, and cooperating with colleagues in marketing campaigns.
Why did you decide to study an MSc Investment & Wealth Management at Imperial College Business School?
The one key reason I chose to come to Imperial College Business School is because of its world-renowned reputation for being a highly innovative and quantitative university. As I wanted to improve further and broaden my understanding of finance through quantitative and applicable methods, Imperial seemed to be the perfect choice and it has proven to be true. Moreover, I chose the MSc Investment & Wealth Management programme because I wanted to gain some exposure to the asset management industry as that is the sector I am most interested in venturing into.
What aspects of the programme do you most enjoy the most?
When I think about my experience at Imperial, I would say that the people I met and the classes I took were both highlights. The people at Imperial, whether in my cohort, or from other programmes at the Business School, are all very passionate and open-minded. Although we come from across the globe, everyone is respectful of the diversity and are always up for discussion (or friendly debate). This makes Imperial a very motivating and rewarding place to study. The classes are also diverse in that they all included elements of academic theory and industry applications. They always allowed me to think about the subject in different perspectives.
Which has been your favourite module so far and why?
Although I have enjoyed all the modules at Imperial immensely, one of my favourite modules is Structured Credit and Equity Products. As it is taught by two industry professionals, the material is very practical and applies directly to the industry. Moreover, the material covers real-world financial products which are usually covered in other modules in extensive detail. I think this module will help me in my future career as it has improved my understanding of the credit and equity markets.
What has been the most rewarding part of the programme?
The various opportunities available at Imperial has been the most rewarding part of the programme. I have been able to tailor my experience by attending various workshops, panels, careers sessions, selecting my own electives, and becoming part of the Student Staff Committee and the Student Investment Fund. I think the opportunity to decide for myself what I get from this year at Imperial is very rewarding, especially as I got to meet a diverse range of people.
What has been the most challenging part of the programme?
It has not been easy to manage time efficiently in order to meet coursework deadlines, prepare for exams, apply to jobs, network, whilst maintaining a healthy life balance. However, the process is very fulfilling, and it has pushed me to new heights that I didn’t think were possible before coming to Imperial.
How would you describe your cohort at Imperial?
My cohort at Imperial are diverse, driven and diligent. No two people have had the same background, whether it be academic or professional. However, we are all like-minded in that we wanted to better ourselves and utilise the opportunities available at Imperial to reach our career and life goals. Moreover, everyone is very supportive as we helped each other through the year in academic studies and careers.
What has been the greatest opportunity you have had at Imperial?
I would say that the chance to be part of the Student Investment Fund as the Head of Strategic Marketing Communications has been a highlight of my time at Imperial. It has not only been a great learning opportunity but also a very fulfilling one. Along with the other executive members, we encouraged greater participation and engagement from fellow Business School students and have come closer towards making the first-ever investments for the fund.
Which workshops, events or guest lectures at the school have been useful in developing your skills and knowledge?
During the academic year, there are many recruitment events from various companies across the financial sector. These sessions not only helped me understand the recruitment procedures to better align my applications, they also helped me narrow down my focus and interests career wise, as they often talked about the details of the role and industry trends. Moreover, the Business School and also Business School clubs have many panel sessions and workshops, which improved my knowledge and deepened my interest in the world of finance.
What clubs, societies or other activities have you been involved in at Imperial?
Other than being part of the Student Investment Fund as mentioned, I have also had the opportunity to be the Academic Leader for the Student Staff Committee. This has also been a very rewarding experience as I got to communicate regularly with my cohort in addressing their concerns and questions, and cooperate with other committee leaders and staff members to help make the programme better.
How have you benefited from being part of the wider Imperial College London community?
There are also many events and clubs outside of the Business School in the wider Imperial College London community. Many of the clubs and events are also finance or business related, and it had been beneficial to network with students outside of the Business School.
How did the services from Careers help in your professional development/securing employment?
The Careers team at Imperial has been a vital part of my career search. I have been to CV and cover letter consultation sessions, interview preparation and one-to-one sessions, presentation and skills workshops, and many recruitment sessions. These services have increased my understanding of the financial job market, what recruiters look for in candidates, and areas of improvement that I needed to work on to stand out amongst the candidates.
Do you think studying in a central location such as London is beneficial for networking and career opportunities?
With most companies being based in London, I have had greater access to various company events, both on campus or off campus, and was able to go to interviews and networking events with ease. Especially with the many things I had to juggle during the year, I am very glad that I didn’t have to spend time travelling to get to these events.
When you’re not studying, what do you enjoy doing?
London is a melting pot of cultures, and I get to experience this first hand. I enjoyed being a step away from some of the world’s most renowned museums, including the National History Museum, the Science Museum and the V&A. Moreover, I have also enjoyed going to different shows including Broadway and comedy shows. Another aspect of culture I have especially enjoyed is the food scene in London, as there are authentic and amazing restaurants that specialise in food from countries across the globe.
If you had to move to London for the programme, what have been the benefits and challenges of moving to London
Having lived in many places prior to coming to London, I did not find settling in to a new city particularly challenging. However, out of the various countries and cities I have lived in, including Hong Kong, Melbourne, Auckland, Vienna and New York, I would say London has been one of the easier cites to settle into as it is very convenient and diverse.
What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying for the programme?
I would advise you to do your research and have a good idea of which area of finance you are more interested in pursuing in the future. Although you could still obtain opportunities in all areas of finance and even consulting after the MSc Investment & Wealth Management programme, there might be other programmes at Imperial more suited towards your goals. Something you should be aware of is that MSc Investment & Wealth Management is very quantitative and involves programming, which is quite an important skill for many finance professionals these days. I think it is important to be genuine and passionate about your interests, so that you will have the right mindset to take advantage of all the opportunities at Imperial and get one step closer to reaching your goals.