Case study

Aaisha Shah — Certificate in Treasury Fundamentals

Association of Corporate Treasurers (ACT)

Aaisha studied finance and economics at the University of Hertfordshire and gained a wealth of work experience - but what really sets her CV apart is her professional qualification from the Association of Corporate Treasurers (ACT)

Why did you take a professional treasury qualification with the ACT?

Towards the end of my second year at the University of Hertfordshire, I was contacted by my module leader about the opportunity to complete the Certificate in Treasury Fundamentals as part of my course. The ACT and the university have been working together to improve graduate opportunities and the options available to accountancy and finance graduates.

At that time I was in the process of applying for undergraduate placements and was unsure of a specific job role for my future, so I took this opportunity to enhance my CV.

How has the qualification improved your understanding of the sector?

I feel my general awareness of how the treasury department works has improved as, prior to taking this qualification, my only knowledge of it was with my work experience at Network Rail. The Certificate in Treasury Fundamentals also helped me understand risk management, investments and liquidity much better.

How did studying for a professional qualification differ from your university studies?

I knew that the course would require a fair amount of independent learning and, being used to classroom teaching, I had to improve my independent learning skills. Receiving a hard copy of the syllabus made this easier, as I was able to make notes early on.

The ACT did some learning workshops for us at the university. After speaking with my fellow learners, I felt more comfortable knowing that I was not the only one finding it a bit daunting. However, with the opportunity to ask questions amongst my peers and learning from the teacher, I found the experience positive.

The quizzes in the workshop were a great way to track how much I was absorbing, and to see where my weaknesses lay. The group work was vital, as it allowed me to see the viewpoints of others and share our ideas.

What importance do you think professional membership organisations have in the finance sector?

Quite a significant importance as membership allows the ability to network within the finance world. The exposure to individuals and events and conferences is good for career progress. Being part of a membership organisation at this early stage in my career also helps my resumé stand out.

What are your thoughts on treasury as a career choice?

The management of money and financial risks within a business is of interest to me. Studying finance and economics, and completing the ACT’s Certificate in Treasury Fundamentals qualification has strengthened my passion.

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