Tag: career trek

The Weston Career Center sponsors several career treks across the globe that provide opportunities for students to meet with alumni and hiring managers in various industries. Yiling Han, MACC ’18, contributed this reflection on her experience from the Accounting Trek in Hong Kong in January. 

My greatest takeaways from the Hong Kong trek were the connections I made with local firms and the insight I gained from insiders’ perspectives. This trek provided me with intensive interactions with accounting professionals from diverse backgrounds, such as HR managers, senior auditors, tax managers, and consultants.

In two days, I received guidance on how to apply for accounting positions in the Hong Kong market, and I learned how to become more efficient in researching options for my career. I also gained a comprehensive understanding about different corporate cultures and key qualifications for positions in different fields of accounting. Overall, the experience provided insight into how best to proceed with job applications at Hong Kong accounting firms.

Details of the career trek

The trek exposed me to leading accounting firms in Hong Kong, including Deloitte, PwC, KPMG, BDO, and Mazars. During each company visit, the company staff introduced the firm, the service lines, resources for employees, and opened the floor to further discussion with students. The staff also provided company tours of the offices to assist in our understanding of their workplace environment.

Our tour began at Edinburgh Tower in Central Hong Kong, where we visited the HR manager of PwC. Our primary interest was to learn more about the company’s culture and job opportunities in the Hong Kong office.

From discussions with company recruiters and accounting professionals, I learned about the firm’s recruiting process, the first-year work experience at PwC, and both the professional and interpersonal qualities of a competitive applicant. To no one’s surprise, most of the firms expected full-time employees and interns to communicate using both Mandarin and English at work.

The Hong Kong trek was not just a series of company visits; it was also a great networking opportunity where we built relationships with people from the Hong Kong accounting firms.

For example, by the end of meeting with Mazars, the firm treated us with snacks, and we chatted for an hour with the auditing director partner, learning from his career experience and outlook on graduate employment.

I believe this is a valuable opportunity to build personal connections, which goes a long way toward making a lasting impression with these firms. It also gave the company officials a better sense of who we are and introduced them to the quality of WashU students and the Specialized Masters Program. I really appreciate the practical experience this trek offered in preparing the Hong Kong trekkers for employment opportunities in Hong Kong.

Pictured above: Members of the Hong Kong trek at KPMG. Greg Hutchings of the Weston Career Center; Yiling Han, Hee Cho, and Rachel Han, all MACC ’18.

A few weeks ago, approximately forty-five Olin sophomores and juniors boarded a bus and made their way up to the Windy City. Once they had checked into Chicago’s illustrious Palmer House Hotel, the students had some time to explore the city, be it by meeting up with friends or sampling some authentic deep-dish pizza.

OBC in ChicagoGuest Blogger: Adam Taitz is a BSBA ’18 student with a minor in Computer Science.

After a goodnight’s sleep, the students split into two groups, consulting and finance, and prepared for the long day ahead of them. While the consulting group made stops at Crowe Horwath, Navigant, and Bain & Co., those on the finance portion had visits at Citi, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, and Lazard. After completing the visits, the two groups reconvened, boarded another chartered bus, and began the drive back to campus.

The trip was undoubtedly a resounding success. Students on both treks gained invaluable knowledge about the consulting/finance industry, as well as greater insights into the individual firms. Augmenting this success is the fact that students from the Olin Business Council were entirely responsible for the successful planning and subsequent implementation of the trip. Washington University and the Olin Business School are fantastic resources for students to utilize in their search for jobs and internships, be it through faculty or peer run programs.

At 7:30 am Thursday, August 27, a chartered bus with 17 Olin MSF Corporate Finance students departed Danforth Campus for the first MS Corporate Finance Road Show to Chicago.

Escorted by Richard Ryffel, Olin finance faculty member and Greg Hutchings, senior advisor Weston Career Center, the students had the opportunity to meet with representatives and alumni from Goldman Sachs, BMO Capital Markets, William Blair, Northern Trust and Belvedere Trading. In addition to the company visits, students participated in a lively industry panel discussion on Thursday evening with representatives from UBS Financial Services, Citadel LLC, Gurtin Fixed Income and Alyeska Investment Group.  The group returned to campus late Friday evening August 28 after a successful learning and career exploration experience.