Malaysian Macquarie graduate Calvin Thong traded an IT career for the exciting world of finance.
Malaysian Macquarie graduate Calvin Thong traded an IT career for the exciting world of finance.

From IT to finance: career change made possible with Macquarie

As a portfolio manager with multinational investment management corporation BlackRock, Malaysian-born Calvin Thong handles millions of dollars of funds on behalf of his clients.

My day to day responsibilities include portfolio management, cash management and risk management, as well as trading equities in Japan and international markets,” the Tokyo-based graduate explains.

It’s quite a change from his previous work as a software engineer, and one that was made possible with a masters degree from the Macquarie Applied Finance Centre (MAFC).

“Within a year of completing a Master of Applied Finance with Macquarie I was offered a role as a portfolio manager,” Calvin recalls. “It was a great achievement and I still use the knowledge I gained from Macquarie every day.”

“The real life case studies we examined in the degree gave me valuable practice for my career,” Calvin adds. “I wasn’t just learning theories from books, but applying them in problem solving real life cases, under the guidance of professors with industry experience.”

He says Macquarie’s program was one of the best he’s ever encountered, with one of the highlights being a week-long elective unit in Beijing.

“The combination of core and elective units allowed me to learn key finance knowledge as well specialise in the areas I was interested in,” he says. “The reasonable fees and flexibility of the timetable were other good reasons to choose Macquarie.”

“Overall, I’d say the high quality of degrees and reasonable fees make Australian universities a good option for Malaysian students.”


Offered in Sydney, Melbourne, Singapore and Beijing, the MAFC Master of Applied Finance is one of the largest programs of its kind in the world and is recognised and respected by leaders in the finance industry.