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Damiya Aloysius Yogaratnam, 20, studied BSC Economics and Accountancy at City University London. Damiya completed Cambridge Pre-U Business & Management at Coloma Convent Girls School in Surrey, 2008-2010. We spoke to her in June 2013.
I really enjoyed studying Cambridge Pre-U Business & Management, a course which allows you to develop an appreciation of the value of business and a practical understanding of how businesses operate and why business management decision-making is so important.
I studied both Cambridge Pre-U Business & Management and A-level Business Studies - two very different courses. The A-level focus was on the theory and Cambridge Pre-U allowed us to look at real-life examples, current issues and businesses that we as consumers were involved with. This broadened our understanding and allowed us to think beyond the classroom.
Cambridge Pre-U also involved more teaching and practical work, in terms of individual research and presentations.
I also picked up a lot of study skills whilst studying Cambridge Pre-U. This was really useful preparation for university. I not only developed as a student but also as a person, having to communicate with business managers as part of my coursework and also their customers for surveys. The requirements of the coursework allowed me to experience the level of work required of an undergraduate. I learnt how to support an answer with primary and secondary research and also how to critically analyse the strengths and weaknesses of my own opinions. I even mastered referencing which is an extremely important skill for university.
I am currently in my final year of studying BSC Economics and Accountancy at City University London and am also taught by Cass Business School for my accounting modules.
Cambridge Pre-U helped me to prepare really well for university and it still helps me now - for example for a recent report I wrote for my Financial Accounting Theory module coursework.
Cambridge Pre-U prepares you like no other subject, not only for your dissertation at university but later for work. If you have experience early on of tasks that are required of you as an employee, such as undertaking research effectively and talking to real businesses, you have an advantage when you enter the world of work. Pursuing a career requires more than knowledge of theories and examples from a textbook.
I learnt a lot during my course in terms of staff motivation and efficiency, and I have been able to introduce some of these ideas to my current part-time job at Smiths News, which I have been praised for.
Once I graduate, I would like to pursue a career in finance, and plan to apply for jobs this summer to work in an accountancy firm. I am also looking to increase my studies, studying towards the ACA qualification to which I have exemptions from studying Economics and Accountancy at a degree level.
I've always had an interest in the economy at a macro level and business studies in a micro level throughout my education. Finishing school at the start of the financial crisis further increased my interest to see how the financial sector would cope with possibly the worst crisis since the Great Depression. Although some may argue that this should push applicants away from careers in finance, I feel that this is the time when finance related careers will benefit the most, through mergers and acquisitions, and cutting costs – the need for accountants is increasing.