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Graduate is happy on all accounts after landing role with Big Four firm

A De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) graduate is thrilled - and relieved - to have started her role with one of the Big Four accounting firms.

Despite her academic achievements on the Accounting and Finance course, Khai Yuen Cheng was nervous about the recruitment process after being turned down for a similar job.

Khai main


She credits DMU's Careers and Employability Team with giving her the necessary confidence and skills to land her post as an Audit Trainee at KPMG.

Khai said: "I am really happy.

"I applied to the KPMG Cambridge office in January and passed the online test but by then it was already full.

"The team said they'd contact me if there were other roles and invited me for an interview just before my finals. I had to concentrate on my exams, so they let me postpone the assessment centre stage.

"I went to the careers team in Gateway House two or three times for each part of the process. They were really helpful and also gave me confidence, as I had been rejected by another auditing company."

Khai graduated with a First this summer and in September started her London-based role, which involves checking that a company's published accounts are true and fair. As an international graduate she's enjoying getting to know a different city.

She chose KPMG's Intensive Programme - a three-year route to achieving the Chartered Accountant qualification. This involves completing 14 of her 15 professional exams in 10 months, two of which she has taken already.

"I thought I might as well do them quickly," she said.


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Born in Malaysia, Khai made the decision to study in the UK based on her parents' experiences.

She said: "Mum and dad both got degrees in the UK and I grew up with the stories they would tell us."

Good at maths and science, Khai chose Accounting and Finance because of the job opportunities. She said: "I had been accepted at several universities, but the Hugh Aston building and exemptions were the main reasons I chose DMU."

Khai's university experience lived up to her expectations. She said: "I liked that most of the lecturers were from industry and had interesting stories to tell and my personal tutor was very supportive."

She also liked Leicester as a city and found the people really friendly.

Khai embraced many opportunities at DMU, volunteering as an i-Buddy for a fellow international student and becoming a Brand Ambassador for the Faculty of Business and Law.

She also did a placement year as a Statutory Accounting Analyst at IBM in Portsmouth.

Khai added: "Thanks to my colleagues at IBM, who made practical accounting a lot more fun compared to theory learning in class, I was also able to provide real-life examples to interview questions!"

Posted on Tuesday 24th January 2017

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