Podcast Transcript – Shawn Chin
Today’s podcast features an interview with UNT alumni Shawn Chin. We asked him a few questions related to his program and to talk a bit about his postgraduation career path. We hope you’ll stay tuned.
Hi, my name is Shawn Chin. I graduated with a degree in finance and I graduated in May 2019. I currently work for Ernst and Young. They are a large consulting and accounting firm and I work as a financial analyst.
When you started at UNT, what were your plans for after graduation? Have these plans changed, if at all, after graduation while I was here at you?
I really didn’t have anything set out. It was actually a little bit scary, a little nervous. I was a little nervous due to the fact that a lot of my peers had kind of plans to get a job at a specific company coming out of UNT, but I didn’t really have anything lined up. I was lucky enough to have an internship in my senior year at a law firm and at at the law firm I was given the opportunity to use. My experience there to get a job after graduation at Ernst and Young as.
It wasn’t really planned, I never planned that to happen. I was lucky enough to go to a career fair here at UNT and when I went to the career fair, Ernst and Young came for the very first time as I’ve gone to a lot of careers in the past. What I came for the very first time and I was lucky enough to speak with a recruiter there, and that recruiter was kind enough to keep in contact with me. So that’s how I actually got the job that you are.
What advice do you have for current students as they decide their next steps after graduation?
One thing that I do recommend for students to do while they’re here at UNT is read a book that I had the chance of reading after I graduated, and I wish I read this earlier or even just listen to a TED talk.
That was from a author named Meg Jay. Dr. Meg Jay. She’s a clinical psychologist and she talks about. Her experience with clients in their 20s and she focuses on individuals specifically an age range from 20 to 30 due to the fact that her. She has a book written called The Defining Decade that outlines each decade is kind of focused on a specific part of your life, the best way to explain it is from zero to 10. It’s kind of like if you imagine picking up. Picking up string, picking up wood to build a boat and from 10 to 20, basically building your boat with the string, with the pieces of wood that you’ve been able to collect and creating a raft, and then from 20 to 30, it’s like setting off sail and doing. Off an island to another island, trying to figure out where you want to go in your 20s to 30s, but then when you get to your 30s or 40s, it’s like you start realizing that you’re going towards a specific island and you can see if this island is an island that you want to go towards or it isn’t. But if it isn’t, it’s really hard to shift sales and go in a different direction to a whole nother island, that analogy basically really help me understand how important our twenties are in defining what we. We want our future to look like so I definitely recommend reading the defining decade or even just listening to her TED talk, but also definitely networking. One of the chapters that she has in her book is to Network. So. Especially for business students. I definitely recommend everyone to meet as many people as you can and keep your connections even throughout college, because it does help.
How did your program at UNT help you feel prepared for this role?
You helped me a lot. Definitely. I would like to mention a few of the professors that helped me a lot. Professor Jack, first, he was an investment or finance professor that I had here at UNT, along with Professor John Bane and. Both of them, Professor Bane, is actually a real estate professor, but both of them taught me so many things that I was able to take away and use.
Even after graduating, having a conversation with. A fellow pair of. Certain topics that I’ve been able to learn here at UNT or using the things that I learned to the current job that I have right now anyway as a consultant, I work with multiple clients within the financial service industry, and that definitely requires you to have some form of knowledge of the things that I was able to learn here. So definitely I was able to take a lot from my education here.
How did you find your current role?
I was able to when I graduated, I didn’t really have a specific place that I wanted to go, so I just I kind of I think a lot of people have been there. You haven’t gotten a job right out of college is kind of just anything that comes your way, but.
When I graduated and I was able to go to the career fair at U.A., there’s hundreds of companies and you’re able to meet with so many different types of people in different industries.
I didn’t really have a set plan to go to E, why only I definitely did look for other companies, but I. I will say that.
I’m thankful that I am here at Y due to the fact that the culture there is. It really focuses on helping you develop as a person and as an individual. Beyond just the work environment, because they have mentors there and like my boss, he’s actually not really like a boss to me, he’s more of a father figure. Definitely. Very thankful that I have him as my boss due to the fact that when I interviewed with him, I think this goes for everyone when you’re interviewing. It only takes one person to really believe in you and my coworker, one of my coworkers, she said this, that she said something that really resounded or resonated with me. And it took me back because we were having a conversation just normal. And she stopped our conversation just to say. Can you believe that our boss gave us a chance and believed in us? Believed in us enough. To hire us when there is so many other options. And it it gave me a chance to reflect and realize, like it does only take one person to believe in you. So I think to never give up is a really big thing when somebody graduates. And if you were in my position, graduate with no job or no plan really in mind. Just to look optimistically and to believe in yourself, believe that. Somebody out there will believe in you and give you a chance. It just is just a matter of time and it’s just about being consistent.
What was the toughest question you’ve been asked during an interview?
Why? There were five rounds of interviews. The very first was a video interview that was prerecorded. The second interview was a phone interview. The third and fourth were in-person behavioral and a little bit of analytical questions focused on the position.
And the very fifth and final interview was a case study. So the first and second interviews were kind of just filter interviews, kind of seeing what you where you are as an individual, how well you can speak to others and kind of just giving a small background. Of your experience, but the third and fourth interviews were a little bit more demanding due to the fact that they asked behavioral questions such as what are your strengths and weaknesses? Or is kind of a difficult question to answer due to the fact that it’s kind of like shooting yourself in the foot. But, yeah, I definitely was able to get a lot of help from my friends who went through interviews on how to answer questions like that. And definitely like I understand people Google questions of behavioral questions before their interviews, and I definitely recommend you do that or speak with other people or reach out to like alumni’s, for example, on kind of how they answered specific questions, because you can find all the behavioral questions and kind of some of the analytical questions online. But definitely I’m thankful that even those difficult questions that were asked of me, I had stories kind of formulated before answering the questions, so I kind of prepared. In a way that I can give an analogy or a story that I experienced to answer a question, and that’s definitely the correct way to answer those questions. And the fifth case study was basically a. Those are a three page sheet. Asking what your ideas are on a example of there’s different. Different case studies and different.
I guess, like. Scenarios, my specific scenario was focusing on two companies that were merging together, and one of the companies was my client and I had to let them know of. Kind of the pros and cons of this merger, what they should be wary of and kind of just get a whole idea of why or why not to continue on with the merger. I think that was very difficult due to the fact that I never went through something like that.
How has the career center helped you?
UNT offers a lot of like interview practices, so that really helps, and I actually went to a couple of them and I went to speak with career advisors as well while I was here at UNT and even after I graduated while I was unemployed, just working as a mentor.
I was able to talk to career advisors and kind of have an idea on how to interview, how to fix my resume, and that definitely helped prepare me at least for the. First four rounds of interviews, but the case study is definitely something that people just have to. Have to try their best in preparing in any way they can by talking to other people or. Possibly looking at mock case studies online.