Treasury Officer, ETOS Limited
Master of Professional Accounting
One of his career dreams is to be a chief financial officer one day, says Feijie (Jefferson) Chen who came to AUT as an international student from Shanghai, China, to study a Master of Professional Accounting.
“What I liked most about the Master of Professional Accounting is that I didn’t just learn international accounting standards, but I also had the chance to explore subjects like corporate finance, statistics or management. This really validated the idea that accounting is no longer just about journal entries and paperwork, but about understanding financial markets, using up-to-date systems and making financial decisions to help companies operate more sustainably.”
But it wasn’t all study and assignments for Jefferson, and he also found the time to participate in a number of student clubs.
“I chose AUT for my studies because it has a great reputation for diversity. AUT respects people from different backgrounds and encourages students to be creative, confident and innovative. I also appreciated that AUT has all sorts of employability support and resources to help students get ready for the business world before graduation. I can say that assistance did help me a lot.
“Running and joining different student clubs was so much fun because I made so many friends, and improved my communication, collaboration and leadership skills, which helped me secure my current job. The other highlight was the time I got an Overall Achievement Award at the AUT Edge Award graduation ceremony. I was so astonished and exhilarated when my name was announced. All my efforts to balance study with volunteering and leadership programmes after class paid off.”
A rewarding career
After graduating from AUT in 2020, Jefferson now enjoys working as a treasury officer at ETOS Limited, a treasury outsourcing service company.
“In this role, I’m responsible for key client relationship including money market transactions and financial derivatives settlements on behalf of our clients. Another part of my job is operating the treasury systems to reconcile any payments with bank invoices.”
The variety of his role is what he loves most about his work.
“Because of my current job, I’ve gained great knowledge of financial markets in New Zealand and a range of financial instruments and derivatives such as foreign exchange deals, interest rate swaps, options, commercial papers etc. I also get to use my communication skills to deal with banks, the NZ Local Government Funding Agency (LGFA) and NZClear, and apply my analytical skills to set up payments, manage bank accounts, operate treasury systems, and run month-end or year-end reports for our clients.”
Advice for other students
Jefferson’s advice for other students is simple: network as much as you can.
“Networking may not only help you find a job, but also helps you get to know some successful people and make some true friends. Because of networking, I’ve met lots of great people, including other AUT alumni, and become good friends with them. Networking also helped me land both my previous part-time job and my current full-time job. It’s important to step out of your comfort zone, and mix and mingle with industry professionals.”
Don’t forget to make the most of your time at university, he adds.
“Study is important but remember there are always other things you can do to colour your university life. Experiencing a range of things at uni will definitely make your uni life one of the most unforgettable times in your life.”