Chuanrui chose to do a Masters due to fierce competition in the finance graduate job market in China. She has enjoyed learning from the extensive industry knowledge of the professors and is looking forward to starting her Double Degree programme in France when she completes her studies at Exeter.
Why did you pick Exeter over other Universities?
I chose the University of Exeter due to its high ranking and reputation. My friend also studied at Exeter and said she really enjoyed her time studying and living here and recommended the Business School to me.
What were you doing before you started your postgraduate studies at Exeter?
I studied for my undergraduate degree at Sichuan Normal University in China and I also undertook some internships during my degree. I worked for Grant Thornton International Ltd in China and a state-owned corporation. During my internship at Grant Thornton, I worked as an audit assistant working with a senior manager to complete audit working papers.
Why did you pick this postgraduate course?
The Chinese finance industry has been developing rapidly over the last few years. With economic globalisation, competition within the finance industry has also become increasingly fierce and the knowledge gained during a bachelor’s degree is not enough to stand out to big employers so I was looking to expand my knowledge. The MSc Finance and Investment programme has a good reputation and is also fully accredited by the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment.
I also noticed that The Business School offers many study abroad opportunities including the Double Degree programme which gives you the opportunity to study for an extra year on a second Masters programme.
How have you found the teaching, research, lecturers, course content?
My favourite module is Financial Modelling, our professor Richard gives us clear logical explanations of complex theories. A high standard of group work is expected which has improved my ability to collect information and work as part of a team. The tutorials we have are very helpful as they use practical elements which show us how to use the theories we learn in a real world environment.
How have you found the support services and the facilities?
Being a finance student, I have found the Bloomberg databases in the finance lab very helpful as they provide us with comprehensive data of the finance market. ELE (Exeter Learning Environment) is a great support tool as it means we can prepare for classes in advance as materials are uploaded by the teachers. Most of the lessons are also recorded so you can revisit the material when you need to.
Did you find it okay settling into Exeter / the UK as an international student?
I was made to feel very welcome before I even arrived in the UK, the welcome team at Exeter sent me joining instructions and all the information I needed which made me feel very supported. I really enjoy living and studying at Exeter, the people are very polite and friendly.
Do you feel campus has an international feel? How does Exeter compare to where you are from originally?
Compared with my home country, I feel Exeter has a strong international feel, my classmates are from all around the world. This is very helpful for future work as in group sessions you are working with students from diverse backgrounds and cultures who can provide new ideas from different perspectives.
What are your top tips for international students thinking about studying in the UK?
Don’t stay in your comfort zone, try and not be shy in classes and join in discussions with your teachers and classmates. It can be daunting when English is not your first language but once you get past this you can improve your language skills very quickly and become more open-minded.
Have you used the Career Zone?
The Career Zone provide a lot of support, as English is not my first language, I attended the academic English writing courses, which gave us advice on how to write essays in English. I am interested in going into marketing, so I have also applied for the Career Mentor Scheme which has put me in touch with alumni who are successfully working in the industry.
Do you feel your postgraduate course will enhance your employability?
I do feel my course has enhanced my employability, it has satisfied all my needs for professional knowledge and is providing me with practical financial training relatable to real world scenarios. Some modules also invite guest speakers who have rich industry experience and share the current issues they are facing in their industries.
What advice would you give to a prospective student considering your course and Exeter Business School?
Study hard for all your modules and make sure you research optional modules beforehand and choose topics that both interest you and that cater to your career plans. The website has lots of useful information and I would recommend reading some essays written by professors as this helps you understand their research areas.
What would you do differently?
If I could start all over again, I would study harder and take every opportunity to talk to my professors. They have both extensive academic knowledge and work experience and talking with them can provide you with useful information for your studies and future career.
What do you want to do when you graduate?
I plan to go to Grenoble Ecole de Management to start my second Masters degree in management. I would then like to do an internship for an NGO organisation to help people in need and accumulate some work experience. My long term plan is to return to China and seek a job in a fast-moving consumer goods company like P&G or Unilever.
Sum up your experience at Exeter in just four words:
Busy, independent, open-minded, interesting