My name is Arjana Cupi and I’m a mother of two children, aged 4 years old and under. I’m currently pursuing a full-time Master’s in Accounting and Financial Management at Henley Business School. This has been by far the toughest and most right decision I have ever made. Choosing to study at Henley has not been a coincidence, but rather a very thoughtful choice.
Back in my undergraduate studies in Finance, I was elected a Student Union officer for two consecutive years and also led the human resources of AIESEC Albania for one term. I have aimed to enhance my studying experience and squeeze the best out of it, and therefore I have never stopped trying and kept my motivation at its highest.
Five years ago, I graduated with a Distinction a year in advance and I also got my dream job offer. My vision for my future was crystal clear whilst I was growing as a professional. However, it was not long after, that my newly formed family was given a chance to move to the United Kingdom, so I packed, resigned my dream job with regret and headed to a country I had never thought I was going to live in. I stepped in having only a suitcase and zero network. That is the amazing power of globalisation!
I re-established myself and never stopped nurturing my motivation to achieve what I had in my mind. At the age of 27 and having two daughters, every morning I would remind myself on how important going back to my career was and continuing my postgraduate studies. I had screened all the postgraduate programs in Accounting in the UK, until I encountered the MSc Accounting and Financial Management at Henley, which offered what I was seeking exactly.
Hence, I attended the Masters Visit Afternoon and the level of professionalism, organisation, excellent academic and non-academic staff and facilities made it the only choice for me. I started my program in September 2019. Besides it’s intensity, I have learned and enjoyed it no less than I did before, when I was a typical undergraduate student. This program offered modules relating to current issues in Accounting such as Management Decision Making and Performance Evaluation, International Financial Reporting 1 and 2, Cases in Financial Management and Control and related others.
I feel honoured to have been taught by OBE Awarded professors and lecturers that actively publish about current issues in Accountancy in well-known journals. At Henley the diversity is to be treasured and I am taught by Korean, Indian, British, Polish, Nigerian, Chinese and Italian professors. I also study with students from all over the world which enrich my cultural and commercial awareness. I simply cannot highlight enough the excellent support from staff and the amazing campus facilities!
Besides the studies, I have engaged in extra-curricular activities and I was elected as the School and Course Rep, which has helped to develop skills such as leadership, time management and networking. There are lots of societies to engage with and also events set up in support of professional development and networking. I am sharing this story because I deem it helpful to people in the same situation as I was before taking this lifetime opportunity. I stand here to assure you that you can do it even if you are a full-time parent, even if you have some years of gap from academia and even if you work full or part time. These should not be obstacles but instead triggers to accomplish yourself academically.
By Arjana Cupi