Originally from Thailand, Fourth moved to Sydney to undertake her undergraduate degree in Actuarial Studies and Finance at UNSW. Conveniently living on-campus, Fourth found that she had additional time for extracurricular activities and filled her timetable with a range of work experience opportunities to help develop her skills and prepare for her future career.
Since arriving in Australia in early 2019, Fourth has undertaken several different jobs across multiple workplaces, helping her build lots of skills.
“I've worked multiple customer service roles, most recently as a Customer Relations Officer at Estate Management, UNSW. I've developed customer-service, CRM database skills, and most importantly, communication skills. As an international student, I value this a lot, because I sometimes find it difficult to understand the Australian accent – and what better way to overcome this problem than by taking on a customer service role!”
Fourth found the attitude to work in Australia very different from that in Thailand. In Thailand, Fourth shares that young people are less inclined to find part-time jobs while studying, something that is common in Australia.
“I was extremely excited to start finding work here in Australia. This is partly because I know that locals here work from when they're teenagers, therefore, I know that if I want to find a job here in Australia after I graduate, I need to start working, get experience and develop skills early.
“Because I didn't work when I was in Thailand, I knew I was at a disadvantage compared to the students here who work part-time – this made me motivated to find any job I could. I worked as a waitress for four months after two weeks of arriving in Australia, just because I wanted to know what it feels like to work!”
Despite her many jobs, it was one particular experience that Fourth says helped her understand Australia’s workplace environment.
“When I started working at Estate Management, that was when I really got a feel for the Australian workplace and its culture, because it's so different to Thailand. It's professional yet very casual, people start and leave exactly on time, and my colleagues were very helpful and trained me on-the-job. It was my first office job where I worked nine-to-five, so working those hours was a new experience for me as well. As a bonus, I also made some connections and was able to use my boss as a reference on my resume; I know employers value local experience a lot!”
Nowadays, Fourth is actively seeking internships, not just in her field of study, but across a range of industries.
“I'm still unsure if I want to go down the Actuarial career pathway and therefore want to explore other options. My future goal is to find a job in Australia when I graduate, which is why I'm applying for as many internships as I can!”