Charles Tan Ian Kun

Thirst for knowledge

Graduate - Charles TanMaster in International Business (2014)

1. Full name / Age / Nationality.

Charles Tan Ian Kun / 28 years old / Malaysian

2. Where are you working / studying presently, and describe your general work scope. 

I work with a Fortune Global 500 company. My job scope involves devising strategies for new business ventures overseas in the oil and gas industry, which includes country mode of entry strategies, preferred region/countries of choice, mode of entry options, tactical plans for business development, and high-level evaluation of business opportunities.

3. Why did you choose to study at Monash University Malaysia?

Without doubt, Monash has top reputation and prestige for its quality education and trusted brand. As a part-time student, the campus’ strategic location in Sunway being near to my home also helped with my decision.

After researching and assessing several options, the University’s prestige, brand, and campus location stood out – it was a straightforward decision.

4. Describe your study experience at Monash University Malaysia.

I’ve been very impressed with the teaching staff in Monash as all lecturers that I’ve encountered possess not only extensive qualifications but also the breadth of experience. Delivery and execution of lectures, handling of assignments and exams were as expected from a top Australian university. Facilities in the campus were adequate and constantly improving such as parking spaces, sports facilities, and organisation of student activities.

5. Were there any obstacles faced while studying here, and how did you overcome them? 

A major obstacle faced by part-time students is always time management as there are times when we had to be late for classes or miss them altogether. Therefore, it was critical for me to sustain good rapport with the lecturers and camaraderie with fellow students to ensure that I am not left out. Communication and setting expectations with both lecturers and fellow students, especially assignment groups, were very important to ensure that deliverables were completed in time without compromising quality.

6. What qualities did you acquire during your studies at Monash University Malaysia that were beneficial to you in the working world?

Resourcefulness to seek information from various sources instead of the “just Google it”approach (Monash has an extensive collection of articles and research papers in its online library and subscriptions) as well as meticulousness and discipline with documentation especially crediting and referencing in academia-approved standards.

The wholesome learning from the MIB course in Monash will aid my career aspiration of eventually being involved with oil and gas commercial and business development areas. MIB’s focus on multilensed global issues trained students in recognising signposts, foresighting, and scenario planning, all of which are important elements in international business. My aspired pathway shall lead me to deal with many international and cross-cultural engagements and my Monash education will undoubtedly apply.

7. What single experience from your time at Monash stands out?

The opportunity to go on a study trip to Hong Kong, Shenzhen, and Shanghai organised by the MIB program in 2013 was priceless, allowing me to visit the civilisation of my ancestors and see the world’s second biggest economy for myself. Visits to local companies also broadened my view across industries and captured valuable insights for a very personal learning experience.

8. What advice would you offer to the current students on how to succeed in university?

Curiosity and excitement with your area of interest helps to maintain energy levels. When I worked on assignments, for example, my mindset was always to quench my thirst for knowledge in the topic, instead of merely doing it for the sake of being a course requirement. Be strict and disciplined with time because impeccable time management would allow students to balance work, study, and a social life – last minute work and no planning will cost students valuable rest time and eventually affect performance.