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Building a career in the financial markets with a degree from a UK university

Rascim Khattak

Rascim Khattak from Pakistan studied for a degree at Royal Holloway, University of London between 2006 and 2009 and Masters in Finance and Economics at Warwick Business School between 2009 and 2010.

Please describe your current job

The Privatisation Commission is responsible for selling government owned entities to the private sector. Primarily this is done to reduce fiscal losses, bring efficiency and introduce modern corporate governance. Privatisation will lead to reduce debt burden on the government and reduce poverty.

As a Transaction Manager, I am currently leading four power sector transactions.

What drew you to study your subject in the UK? How did it help you in your chosen career path?

Prior to my A-levels, I completed an internship in the Islamabad Stock Exchange. The internship piqued my interest in the financial markets and the economy. This naturally drew me towards pursuing my interest in economics in A-levels and in university.

Why did you choose the UK?

By studying A-levels, I had an advantage in getting accepted at a university in the UK. And I knew that a UK degree had universal acceptance and recognition; this is something will help me throughout my life.

What was your career progression after you finished your UK course?

Immediately after my degree, I pursued Masters Degree in Finance and Economics.

What advice would you give students from your country hoping to get into your area of work?

Be clear about which area of financial markets you wish to pursue a career in. You should hopefully be able to make your mind while in university. For example, if you wish to work in an investment bank, then you should be certain about whether you want a career in mergers and acquisitions, debt markets or equity markets.

What for you has been the most useful outcome of your UK education?

Compared to my friends who chose to stay at home, I can boldly claim that I am more mature, confident, articulate and independent. I can socialise better and am more open minded and willing to change.

What are your ambitions for the future?

I am planning to do an MBA from one of the top three universities in the world and I aim to open my own Private Equity firm in the near future.

Did you find it easy to settle in to life in the UK? What did you enjoy the most about living here?

The transition from the comfort of one’s home to life as an international student is stark. But, university life makes this transition smooth and easy. Not only do universities help international students but so do other countless international students who are also in the same boat as you are. Everybody helps everybody else out.  I found it very easy to settle into university life.

What’s your number one memory of your time in the UK?

The entire time I was there was one big happy and life changing memory.

Is there anything else you want to tell us about your experience of studying in the UK and how it helped shape your career?

The only thing I would tell aspiring students is that if you have the opportunity, then please go and study in the UK. It is a life changing and priceless experience. But have a clear idea about where you want to go and what you want to study. This will make your choices easier afterwards.