Thomas Kotrotsios

Programme: MSc International Accounting and Finance, 2015

Current role: Transaction Services Senior Associate, PWC

After completing my Economics undergraduate degree in Greece, I wanted to move to London to pursue a career as a Chartered Accountant at one of the Big Four accounting firms and complete the ACA.

I knew that the ACA was going to be a big challenge, as the Big Four’s graduate screening processs is tough. So I wanted to study at a university that would equip me with the necessary knowledge and skills to exceed in my career.

I chose the Business School (formerly Cass) due to its location, reputation, ties to the City, networking opportunities and the quality of its staff. Prior to studying at the Business School, my knowledge of UK International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) was limited. However, the structure of the the MSc in International Accounting and Finance is very well designed, enabling me to develop the required knowledge for a career in the accounting sector. Also, the ACA extensions were very useful for my career path.

The academic staff at the Business School are experts in their field with extensive experience in corporate environments, and help you contextualise theory in the real-world. Plus, the multicultural cohort enabled me to form lasting friendships with people from all over the world.

A highlight of my time was the Student Society, which hosted some fascinating talks from academic staff and some first-class guests from organisations, such as the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales  (ICAEW) and Goldman Sachs. There were some great networking opportunities, enabling me to connect with representatives from major organisations, which made life easier when it came to applying for jobs. I was also elected as a student representative, which gave me the opportunity to develop great leadership, adaptability and communication skills that would serve me well when I entered the corporate world.

The facilities and resources, including, of course, the Careers Team, were amazing. When it came to job applications, the Careers Team was very helpful, holding mock interviews and giving me the confidence to go to the real thing, ensuring that I was well-prepared for everything that would come up. Their help played a big role in helping me to succeed in the application process.

Overall, I would say that the Business School helped me to understand what kind of things major companies are looking for and enabled me to develop the necessary skills to secure a the kind of job I aspired to be in. Now I have a career that I wouldn’t have been able to imagine four years ago. I am a Senior Associate in Transaction Services at PwC, working on Financial Due Diligence and Valuations for mergers and acquisitions. I actually secured my initial role at PwC while I was still a student, which is quite an achievement. I owe a lot to my professors and the Career Team. I don’t think I would be where I am today, if it wasn’t for my time at the Business School.