Meet Neeharika, a remarkable international student from India studying at The University of Queensland (UQ). Her unbridled passion for economics and finance is matched only by her determination to succeed in her academic pursuits. As she enters the final year of her Master of International Economics and Finance degree, Neeharika looks back on her achievements with a sense of pride and accomplishment.
Originally hailing from the small city of Haridwar in the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand, Neeharika was drawn to Australia for its high-quality education and multicultural society. Brisbane offers a safe and welcoming environment for international students, which made it the ideal place for her to achieve her academic goals and live independently.
“It's been my dream since I was a child to go abroad to pursue my master’s and my higher education, and The University of Queensland was like a dream come true for me,” she shares.
While courses in economics were offered in her home country of India, none provided the specialisation in finance that she was looking for. Neeharika found UQ appealing as its economics and finance programs were updated according to the industry's requirements, with a focus on practical applications of economic theory.
She was also drawn to the flexibility of the curriculum, which gave her the freedom to choose her own path and tailor her studies to her individual needs.
UQ School of Economics Scholarship
Neeharika was thrilled to learn that she had been awarded the prestigious School of Economics International Undergraduate Scholarship, which is offered by UQ’s Faculty of Business, Economics and Law to exceptional international students. Neeharika's academic achievements and her commitment to extracurricular activities caught the attention of the scholarship committee, and she was proud to be among the few selected for this highly competitive scholarship. The scholarship would not only relieve some of the expenses of studying abroad, but also provide opportunities to engage in a range of academic and cultural experiences at The University of Queensland.
“The scholarship and the offer letter from the board were a prize for my hard work, which I've been putting in since I was a child. It was a very emotional moment,” Neekarika recalls. “I was just hopping on my bed with excitement and then my mom asked me, what is going on with you? Did you get a lot of likes on your Instagram? And I said, no, mom, this is much more important than that. I got a scholarship!”
International Economics and Finance at UQ
As an ambitious student, Neeharika was aware that economics and finance were fields on the rise, with surging demand for skilled professionals who could bring together the best of business and financial strategies.
She chose her program carefully, opting for a Master of International Economics and Finance, which offered her the perfect mix of theoretical and practical knowledge. With opportunities to work on various interesting projects and assignments, Neeharika knew the skills she gained would be invaluable for her future career prospects.
Life in Brisbane
Neeharika's favourite thing about Brisbane is the way it perfectly blends nature and metropolitan elements - from the beautiful river that runs through the heart of the city to the stunning skyline and the magnificent mountains that surround it.
“Whenever the sun sets, the sunlight falls on this one building and makes it glisten like gold and this might just be my absolute favourite part of the day and my favourite thing about Brisbane,” Neeharika shares.
In her free time, Neeharika enjoys reading self-improvement books, spending time with friends and family, and watching TV shows. She also works part-time in a smoothie bar, which allows her to meet new people in Brisbane.
“I'm so happy that I made it to Brisbane. It's like a perfect amalgamation of everything. The city lights, the mountains and the natural beauty and the skies. And, of course, UQ.”
Plans for the future
As she prepares to enter the workforce, Neeharika's goal is to gain experience, broaden her areas of expertise, and build her network and contacts in the corporate world.
“My long-term goal remains to acquire quality education and international work experience and exposure in the field of economics and finance. I aspire to become a well-recognised financial analyst in leading financial firms like KMPG, PWC, Deloitte and Ernst & Young,” she shares.
Advice for international students
As Neeharika gears up to take on the world, her story serves as an inspiration to students who wish to make their mark in the world of economics and finance. For future international students, she offers sage advice.
“The most important thing is to find the right path towards your passion and research well to find a program that resonates with the same goal,” she says. “Choose a city and a university that intrigues you and provides you with whatever you’re looking for as it is going to be your temporary home and it should feel like one. Be well-connected with all your professors and friends and always know that you’re not alone.”
Interested in a career path like Neeharika’s? Explore The University of Queensland’s School of Economics, ranked number one in Queensland.