On the 13th of July 2016, CPA Australia and Binder Dijker Otte (BDO) specially came down to Singapore Polytechnic to give DAC Students a talk on the professional qualifications we can obtain and share about the experiences of a tax professional’s life.
Mr Lucas Lam, Regional Manager of CPA Australia, shared about the importance of networking and introduced the students to CPA Australia Network. Mr Lucas mentioned that the value of networking = meeting people + creating opportunities and that building of our very own Unique Selling Point(USP) allows us to stand out in the crowd. He continued with a quote “Learn, Unlearn and Relearn”, which he shared with us about how he unlearnt what he had learnt in school and relearnt it when he started applying the concept. He shared about the experiences of a young student who was introduced to the CPA program. The student started the CPA program with no business background, but through the CPA Australia Network, he was able to gain great knowledge through the study sessions and eventually became a member of CPA. The CPA Program is a post-graduate accounting program that combines professional education with 3 years’ relevant practical experience, ensuring members gain both the technical and commercial skills required to stand out.
Through the CPA Australia network, students will gain exclusive access to global networking opportunities and events, connecting with influential people, career mentoring, support and advice. Joining CPA Australia Network means that I will get a chance to meet Alex Malley, the Chief Executive of CPA Australia, and obtain useful advice from him! Moreover. Also, students will be invited to the career Expo to meet and network with potential employers.
Afterwards, Miss Yvonne Chua, Associate Director of BDO, shared her personal experience of being a tax director. BDO in Singapore is part of the international BDO network of independent member firms and the world’s 5th largest accounting and consulting network. Miss Chua shared with the students interviewing tips and what they should actually do if students decide to venture into the taxation industry.
Lastly, there was a mock interview session. A student volunteered to do a mock interview with Ms Shealin (BDO HR manager) and Ms Yvonne Chua (Tax director). It was a great learning experience for everyone as we could pick up many valuable learning points from it. For example, I learnt that we should always know the background of the company that we are interviewing for.
In conclusion, the sharing sessions by CPA and BDO were exceptionally informative and shared with us many valuable experiences. It just goes to show what we do and learn in Singapore Polytechnic is internationally recognised. Personally, there were many take-aways for me in this talk and I will definitely participate in more talks like this as I really get to know what is happening in the industry.