Alumni Story: An International Master Graduate's Experience in Xiamen

Alumni Story: An International Master Graduate's Experience in Xiamen

Recently, I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Filippo Gandolfi, just before he boarded a flight for a business trip.  Mr. Gandolfi, who hails from Brescia, Italy is a recent graduate of the WISE-SOE International Master’s Program, specializing in International Business and now works in Xiamen.

After his study Mr. Gandolfi, successfully applied online, using his International Business degree, for a job in sourcing that well-matches his passion for international trade and sales. His main responsibility is to locate specific products for individual clients. These products range from ornaments to textiles. After living in China for two years and talking frequently with professors about business ethics and economic reasoning, he has learned a great deal about Chinese culture. These conversations were valuable for his career development in China. Moreover, the contacts he has established through the university has created more opportunities to network. This is why he urges current students to keep a strong connection to their network of friends and classmates, as one will never know what job opportunities may arise.

Looking back upon his study at Xiamen University, Mr. Gandolfi said that the most important courses that he took included Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Business Statistics, Financial Statement Analysis, and Financial Economics. Mr. Gandolfi did not have a strong economic background prior to his master’s study, and the courses were very helpful. He stressed the importance of studying smart and suggested: “Try not to put a lot of pressure on things you can’t achieve because you don’t have the basis. Try to focus on those classes that you can gain a lot of information from. Compliment your studies with a lot of private research. Finding the right resources are a big help.” He also gave advice on how to manage all the stress that surfaces when it comes to thesis writing. As he put it “I know it’s difficult, but try to pick a good advisor. Set deadlines. Don’t waste time trying to achieve what you cannot. Stay close to your professor.”

As for the future, Mr. Gandolfi intends to stay in China; he likes international trade and is looking forward to finding a great idea and developing into a business. In his own words, “I’m a creative person and I would like to build on my own ideas.”

—— Fendi Bentley, student assistant, WISE-SOE International Master’s Program

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