Maria Kharitonova

Masters in International Finance, Amsterdam Business School, University of Amsterdam.

Posted by Marina Zernaeva at 2014-10-01 15:30

1) Which university did you study in Russia and in the Netherlands? Which area of study and which programme?

I studied Applied Mathematics at the Saratov State University and International Finance at Amsterdam Business School, University of Amsterdam.

2) How did you choose the university in the Netherlands?

I was already in Amsterdam doing an internship at the ABN AMRO bank and was looking for studies in Finance. Couple of friends and colleagues recommended to apply for the masters at ABS.

3) When you were planning to go to study abroad, what did you expect from it? Did your study in the Netherlands fulfill your expectations afterwards?

As mentioned above, I was already in the Netherlands when I decided to pursue this study, I was looking for something in Finance since I was doing an internship in a bank, something that could give me a broad understanding yet being specific enough on certain topics. So, the studies completely fulfilled my expectations from that perspective.

4) How could you describe the study process in your Dutch university? Can you compare it with the Russian one you studied at?

It is much more interactive, something that we barely had back in Russia. Lots of case studies, group projects and assignments followed by the presentations in the class. It is also much more strict in terms of preparation for the class and attendance, which I liked. At the beginning I had to adjust to the fact that everything is taught in English, something I haven’t experienced before, working in English at the same time definitely helped.

5) What is the most valuable experience you gained during your stay in the Netherlands?

It is hard to single out one thing, one experience, especially because I am still in the Netherlands. In general, I believe working and studying in a foreign country was an eye-opener, helped me to put many things in perspective.

6) Did your study experience in the Netherlands help your career development?

Half way through my masters program which I did part-time next to my internship I was offered a permanent position in the team I was working for with quite a high salary grade.

7) Do you think your international experience had an impact on your future life?

Definitely. In fact, I haven’t stopped moving around. Before doing an internship in the Netherlands, I lived and worked in Peru for a year. After 6 years in the Netherlands I moved to India for almost 2 years and recently back in the Netherlands again. Living and working abroad makes you more flexible, open-minded and tolerant, helps to put things into perspective, as I mentioned earlier.

8) Tell us a little bit about your plans for the future; how do you see yourself in 4 years

Working on strengthening my family further, expecting my first child now, hopefully more in 4 years time. Living in the Netherlands or elsewhere in the world, perhaps back in Russia. Working either as freelance professional on various social entrepreneurship projects or for a social enterprise in finance/project management/business development area. 

Posted by Marina Zernaeva at 2014-10-01 15:30