Shan Xiao, already has a job offer in a dream role and she’d only completed semester 1 of her 5-semester graduate degree at Carnegie Mellon University in Australia.
Shan, a Bachelor of Finance graduate from Wenzhou-Kean University in China, is studying a Master of Science in Information Technology and will graduate in May 2020.
Aiming to work in investment banking, or financial consulting, Shan wanted to gain some valuable work experience so while doing her undergraduate studies in China she tried to secure an unpaid internship with companies in China.
“I met a lot of problems securing an internship when I was doing my undergraduate studies because I didn’t have a programming background”, explained Shan Xiao.
“Even with finance roles, employers want applicants to have experience with Python or Java.
“The constant rejection was hard to take, but it motivated me to study data and computer science at graduate school” she said.
Shan was accepted into Carnegie Mellon University’s Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) degree and commenced her studies in August 2018.
Determined to do some work experience, during her first semester break Shan returned to China to find for a holiday internship.
To her delight, she easily secured a 6-week holiday internship in the Investment Banking Department at Guo Yuan Securities in Shanghi and they have indicated there’s a job with them after graduation.
“I put this change of attitude down to the degree I’m studying and the University I’m attending. Recruiters know Carnegie Mellon University; its famous, famous for computer science!”, she said.
“So, I think any graduate from CMU is going to be highly sought after by employers, said Shan.
“Easily securing an internship, and my job offer, is a really good sign and means I can now complete my studies knowing that there are some exciting opportunities out there for me when I graduate, said Shan.
Shan is doing the MSIT Business Intelligence and Data Analytics track at CMU-A and sees this as bringing together her interests in finance, management and computer science.
“I think CMU and the MSIT degree are amazing. We are taught to find solutions to problems, to think critically and look for opportunities to improve and automate business processes. It’s so exciting and challenging”, she said.
What’s your experience studying in Australia?
“Australia is a great place to study. It’s an easy place to live and less expensive than living in the USA”, she said.
Most importantly, the degree you get from CMU-A is identical to the CMU US degree. And recruiters don’t look at where the University is based. They only care about which University you went to.
While Shan originally thought she’d return to China after graduating, and already has a job lined up in there, she has now decided to stay in Australia and work.
Over the next twelve months she will complete her studies, undertake an internship and possibly spend one semester at CMU in Pittsburgh on exchange.