For Vellore University of Technology graduate Soumya Ludra, coming to ESSEC Asia-Pacific for the Master in Management (MiM) program was a massive step out of her comfort zone in India.

Her journey thus far has been one of independence and self-discovery. She has developed her career goals and overcome fears about finding an internship at the health technology firm Fibronostics.

How did coming to ESSEC change your perspective on the world?

I chose Singapore because it seemed like a good idea to ease myself into a new life at a place where I’d have less cultural shock.

I also thought it would be a good opportunity to interact with my French classmates and learn about their culture before I head to the Cergy campus in my second year.

Now I have friends from Spain, Italy, France, India, Indonesia and Germany. I’ve also become much better at socializing and networking.

Describe your experience and key takeaways from the MIM Study Trip to Vietnam?

We visited different companies and had an alumni event, where all the ESSEC alumni living in Ho Chi Minh City gathered to share about life in Vietnam and the job opportunities available for English-speaking people.

But my favorite part of the trip? Being able to travel and bond with my new friends.

How did your career goals evolve during the internship application process?

I had planned to find work in consulting or marketing. But in my first trimester, I did well in my finance and accounting modules, and my accounting professor brought me on board to become his research assistant.

I realized that I enjoy how solid and unambiguous financial analysis and accounting are, and I decided to look into paths that will bring me into the financial sector.

How did you navigate the job market and interviews without having previous work experience?

I spent a lot of time with my career services advisor, shaping and reshaping my CV, adding critical skills and different project certificates relevant to the jobs in Singapore.

He gave me valuable tips, including numbers to show the potential impact of my team’s strategy during the Junior Consultant Experience (JCE) and taking online courses with certificates relevant to the industry I want to join.

Why do you think informing potential employers about your work visa status is essential?

As an ESSEC student, you are legally allowed to work for up to 40 hours a week.

Our career services advisor told us to explicitly mention this on the top of our CVs—and in red, so potential employers would pay attention to it.

How did the ESSEC Alumni network assist you in securing your job interview at Fibronostics?

An ESSEC Master in Strategy Management & International Business (SMIB) student had been interning at the company, and when he took on a full-time position, the CEO asked if he could help find a replacement from ESSEC Business School.

He contacted ESSEC career services, and my career services advisor recommended me.

My role may not be in finance, but I see it as a step in the right direction. For example, I’m working with a growth equity firm on a consulting project as part of my internship.

There are elements of this relevant to the finance sector, which I believe will be helpful in the future!

In what ways did ESSEC contribute to building your confidence?

The modules we took helped me understand the theory, so I know how to approach different tasks.

But the best part is that we worked on so many projects over the last year that giving presentations is easy now.

I can probably create a presentation deck in an hour and pitch it to whoever I need to now!