• Exposure to different industries and businesses is essential for future consultants.
  • ESSEC APAC’s location in Singapore is the perfect place to start an international career.
  • Students benefit from the school’s extensive network of businesses, professionals, and alumni.

Sébastien Tordo graduated from the University of Paris I: Panthéon-Sorbonne with a degree in finance and secured close to a year’s worth of internship experience in the finance sector before choosing to embark on a master’s degree.

His motivations were simple: As he wanted to become a strategy consultant, he needed more exposure to make solid and sound recommendations for his future clients.

This led him to the Master in Strategy & Management of International Business (SMIB) program at ESSEC Asia-Pacific, one of Asia’s most significant financial hubs, Singapore.

Now well into his studies at ESSEC, Sebastien testifies to how the school has met his criteria of introducing him to different sectors and functions, with the added benefit of enabling him to build a solid professional network along the way. He tells us more.

How did the SMIB program align with your career goals?

I plan to work in strategy consulting with a specialty in private equity. In five years, I’d like to be working l for a consulting firm such as Bain & Company or Roland Berger or even for a private equity fund such as Ardian.

I chose the SMIB program as I was impressed by the caliber of courses taught by professors experienced in consulting, marketing, and finance.

I also appreciate how the school’s pedagogy requires its students to apply lessons to real-world problems through group projects, which also improve our teamwork and sharpen our collaboration skills.

I believe the school’s case study method will prepare us thoroughly for the business world and is also good practice for interviews in the consulting field, as many companies typically include case studies as part of the application process.

Why did you choose ESSEC Asia-Pacific?

Primarily because of its location in Singapore. I felt that being at this campus would help me better understand Asian culture and business practices and also push me out of my comfort zone by allowing me to meet and interact with a diverse set of individuals from all over the world—all of which would help me build my multicultural skills.

In addition, Singapore, being at the crossroads of Asia, is an ideal place to start a career, primarily because of the presence of many multinational companies.

This makes it a perfect choice for any job applicant interested in working for some of the world’s biggest businesses.

How has being an SMIB student at ESSEC helped you professionally?

Being a student of ESSEC has already benefited me professionally! I was also allowed to speak to a recruiter via LinkedIn about job opportunities at Ernst & Young after a career day at ESSEC.

And during another career event, I gave my CV to a recruiter from Dior and was invited to an interview the following week. Now, I’m an intern at Business Analyst Intern at CELINE.

I believe all this is a testament to the school’s reputation and how it gives students credibility in the workplace.

In what other ways did the school expose you to businesses around Asia?

The study trip to Thailand has helped me understand more about businesses in Asia and the challenges they face in areas like the emergence of fintech, non-fungible tokens, and other new technologies—which I believe is relevant knowledge for the future.

The trip also gave me an idea of what sectors I would like to join or work closely with after graduation.

I also participated in the Asian Strategy Challenge (ASC), which allows students to serve as consultants for real organizations.

Apart from giving me real work experience, I finished the project with newfound skills in benchmarking, competitive analysis, database management, and more.

Would you say that ESSEC is different from your other schools?

Yes. Compared to other schools I’ve attended, ESSEC stands out because it has expanded my professional network through networking events, company visits, and alumni meet-ups.

The school’s international focus is also a plus for me, as it has allowed me to travel and meet people from all over the world who work in different sectors and are willing to share their experiences and advice with me.