Xiaonan Zou

Xiaonan Zou

Studying MSc Management at Imperial

Why did you choose to study MSc Management at Imperial College Business School?

I did a lot of research before I made my application and found the MSc Management programme at Imperial College Business School to be one of the best, firstly because the programme structure is excellent. Courses such as accounting, marketing, project management, strategic management and finance have allowed me to obtain a wide and solid basis for understanding management.

What made the Business School stand apart from the competition for you?

The well-known tradition and excellence of innovation research is a unique feature of Imperial College Business School and one that benefits all MSc Management students. During the Innovation Management course, we learnt that innovation can be effectively integrated with business to create world-class products and services and challenge the traditional business models. We also had the option of choosing the Innovation pathway on the programme where we were encouraged to design new things and create business models. Staff from the prestigious innovation technology centre and business incubator Design London also taught us in innovation-related courses and regularly held guest lectures at the Business School.

How would you describe the Business School community?

It is a very supportive, energetic and ambitious environment. I found that other students were also very kind and helpful.

There are numerous student societies where you can easily find people who share common interests. Students at the Business School also enjoy some interesting events like cross-programme parties and alumni parties, which allow us to get to know schoolmates and alumni of different backgrounds while enjoying tasty food and drinks!

Career & Professional Development

How has the Business School helped you in your career development?

The Business School’s Careers and Professional Development Service provides strong support to help students with job hunting. During my studies I received weekly emails from them which reminded me of careers events and application deadlines. I met with careers advisors who helped me with my CV and cover letter and conducted mock interviews to prepare me for real interviews. I also attended a very useful and practical seminar on “How to survive a ‘case study’ in interviews.”

The Business School also invited numerous experienced managers and CEOs from different business sectors and divisions to speak to students. I particularly enjoyed a presentation by a Business School alumnus about exotics trading in investment banks which provided a great opportunity for me to learn more about what exotics traders do in their day-to-day work and increased my interest in this kind of work.

How did your studies help prepare you for a career specifically in investment banking?

When I first arrived at the Business School, I didn’t know which business sector would interest me and I wasn’t confident that I could survive the fierce competition in the job market. However, I found that as I attended more lectures and events at the Business School, my goal became clearer and I realised that working at an investment bank would be a very interesting and challenging step for me. I then signed up for almost all the Business School events held by different investment banks. I found that the knowledge and skills I had acquired through the MSc Management programme had helped me possess a sound basis of skills and knowledge that are required by investment banks.

Xiaonan Zou

MSc Management 2009-10

Nationality: Chinese

Undergraduate education: BA German, Shandong University, China

Employment after studying at the Business School: UBS Investment Bank