Solomia Prokopiv – Master of Management (Finance)
What made you choose the Melbourne Business School and the Master of Management (Finance) program in particular?
I pursued my undergraduate studies in Estonia, and it was every bit as quaint, sparsely populated and nordic as you can imagine. After having been there for a while, my partner and I decided to move to a different setting and Melbourne and Australia stood out to us. And although it’s a cliché to say so, but the University of Melbourne really is the best university not only in the city, but the country, so naturally it appealed to me the most.
As for my program, choosing it wasn’t the easiest decision, and I was conflicted between three streams. Having studied a degree in business administration at an undergraduate level, I was inclined towards closing the Master of Management (Accounting and Finance) stream, but I realised that professional certification requirements such as the CPA made it difficult to pursue that track. I was also contemplating to opt for the Master of Finance program, but the Master of Management (Finance) stream offered me a chance to diversify my curriculum a bit more, hence I picked that.
How has your time in Melbourne been so far?
I moved here a year ago, and so far it has been great! People find it weird when I say this but the only reason I started my program this semester is because it was moved online. I understand that experiencing university life in-person is a pivotal part of studying abroad, but I wanted to start my degree at my own pace, and knowing that academically, the first semester wasn’t as demanding, I thought starting it online would give me the time I need to settle in.
What all activities have you been involved in at the university?
So far, I have participated in the MBS Case Competition which was an amazing experience. Participating in a case competition was something that I had always wanted to do, but I wasn’t exactly certain about how I would want to approach it. I decided to give it a try, and registered as an individual participant, not knowing what to expect but it turned out to be great. Ours was the only team that was allocated by the organisers and made it to the finals. I also participated in the MBSSA Peer Mentoring Program, which too was an incredible experience.
Which events hosted by the university would you say were the most helpful?
I attend the Careers and Employability week hosted by the university this semester and found several webinars to be quite insightful. The ones that I found the most helpful were the ones hosted by the Women in Consulting panel, where industry experts spoke about how we can start a career in the industry and gave the participants really helpful advice, and the other one was by Salesforce, where officials from the company spoke about their initiatives and offerings for students.
How has your experience with online learning been so far?
While the experience overall has been really pleasant, one thing that I miss having is the chance to interact with my classmates. Sharing ideas and engaging in discussions with your peers, is in my opinion such a fundamental part of university education, and it is sad that we don’t have that opportunity this time around. Other than that, however, it has been great. I appreciate that we have discussion boards set up for every module so that we can clarify our doubts and look at the ones others are having too. A perk of classes being pre-recorded is that now I can tune in to them at my own pace, without worrying about it being too hectic for one go.
What is something that you feel new students should look out for?
I definitely would recommend every new student to participate in the MBSSA Peer Mentoring Program, because I feel like it is such a great way to meet new people and form incredible connections! You get to interact with senior students and clear out any doubts you may have about the university, and also gain some valuable advice, that you probably wouldn’t find elsewhere.
Another thing that I would encourage new students to do is to take their time planing the academic load. The degrees at MBS offer you a chance to choose from a wide variety of subject offerings, and it is important that you spend enough time chalking out a curriculum plan, and allocate subjects in a way, that you feel would help you the most.
All the best!
Master of Management (Finance)