This program also sharpened my interpersonal and soft skills.

Jonathan Li Hao Chang, Canada
Institution:Singapore Management University (SMU), Lee Kong Chian
Program:Master of Science in Management
Degree:2016

What did you do before this Master?

Before joining SMU, I just completed my Bachelor of Arts in Sociology at the University of Western Ontario.

Why did you decide to do the Master of Science in Management?

I wanted to pursue a career in Finance, and I wanted to enrol in a Masters program that will give me all the business knowledge required to succeed in this field. What attracted me to the MM programme is that it is designed for students with little or no business background, and equips us with a wide variety of courses ranging from accounting to corporate finance. In addition, I wanted to enrol in a program that gives extra focus on Asian business management with special insights on how companies in Asia operate, as well as the unique challenges they face.

Why did you choose the SMU?

I chose SMU because I am someone who learns well from learning concepts and applying them to real-life case studies than from plain textbook learning. I also wanted the opportunity to contribute my knowledge to the classroom as well as learn from others. In addition, SMU is well-connected to the business community of Singapore and Asia and has a strong prestigious reputation in the business world, and their career centre gives students like myself the opportunity to network with many companies and offers workshops that promises to help enhance my interview and resume-writing skills.

What did you experience during the program?

In the first day of class, I was put in a group that was chosen to reflect diversity in terms of gender and nationality. Initially, because we all came from different backgrounds and cultures, we had grown accustomed to the work ethics that served us well during our previous studies. In this program, we had to learn to work together in order to find that synergy that would help our group succeed in the program. Over time, we slowly adapted to the new style of learning and we had grown closer with one another, and we are now the best of friends.

How did you benefit from the program?

This program not only equipped me with the practical business knowledge, but it also sharpened my interpersonal and soft skills. Working with people of different backgrounds and watching them gave me the opportunity to learn from them and allowed me to step out of my comfort zone and transform myself from a shy, introverted person into someone with the confidence to achieve great things in life. I learned that anything is possible if you push yourself to the limit, and the reward is worth the effort.

Why would you recommend this program to others?

The MM program not only equipped me with the knowledges ranging from Accounting to Corporate Finance to Marketing, but the program also helped me better understand how to apply these concepts into real-life situations through projects and real-life case studies, which helped me develop me analytical and critical thinking skills. I also had the opportunity to improve my leadership, communication and teamwork skills through group projects and class presentations. This program allowed me to capitalize on my strengths while improving my weaknesses, and it made me into a well-rounded individual that is ready to take on the challenges in the workplace.

Any tips for future SMU applicants and students?

Opportunities are abundant in this program, so take advantage of this and get to know your professors and peers, and always sign up for the networking sessions, because you might just find your ideal job there. In addition, class participation is a huge part of the curriculum, so if you’re someone who gets nervous about public speaking, rest assured that you will get plenty of practice throughout the year and graduate from SMU knowing that you can handle the crowd with more ease than before.

Your contact at the Singapore Management University (SMU)

Mandy Lin is the Senior Manager of Postgraduate Admissions at the Lee Kong Chian School of Business, Singapore Management University. You are welcome to send her your queries on the SMU programmes or what it’s like studying at SMU.

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