How I turned an internship into a job offer

Jeron Lee Kenzhen shares how an internship at EY Malaysia led to a job offer before he'd even completed his degree
BSc Accounting and Finance graduate Jeron Lee Kenzhen
“After my two-month internship, I was able to get a job offer before even finishing my exams": Jeron Lee Kenzhen
I asked someone in HR why they chose me for the internship, and they said, ‘Firstly, the University of London programme is very well recognised. Secondly, I think you’ll be able to survive at EY and succeed.'

University of London graduate Jeron Lee Kenzhen gained a sought-after position at a global professional services firm after impressing during an internship.

Jeron, 23, managed to secure a job as an audit associate at EY Malaysia in early 2014 – months before he’d even completed his BSc degree in Accounting and Finance.

Jeron’s path to working at EY began in 2013, when he was selected for an internship. At the time he was in the second year of his degree, studying with support from HELP Academy in Kuala Lumpur.

Jeron explained: “I asked someone in HR [at EY] why they chose me for the internship, and they said, ‘Firstly, the University of London programme is very well recognised. Secondly, I think you’ll be able to survive at EY and succeed.'

"Several months after completing my internship, EY called me and offered me a job in any department that I desired. I was able to clinch the job partly due to the brand name of University of London programme that I was pursuing, and the impression that I had left during my two months internship in EY." 

“Through my studies, I managed to obtain a very good understanding of how you manage the finances of a company, and how you ensure that the company is viable."

A year on, Jeron said the skills he developed during his degree were still proving extremely useful.

“My job is about understanding the company, auditing the company and ensuring that everything is true and fair,” Jeron said.

“Through my studies, I managed to obtain a very good understanding of how you manage the finances of a company, and how you ensure that the company is viable. So from that, I am able to assess whether a company can be financially sustainable.”

He said he enjoyed working in audit - although the hours could be very demanding.

"The best part about the work is the satisfaction obtained in seeing the final audit report and in producing something and that stakeholders rely on," Jeron said. "The worst bits of auditing life are the long hours you are expected to work during peak periods. One time I did not finish work until about 4 am the next morning."

Jeron offered the following advice to students considering a career in audit or accounting: "Aim for an internship in one of the Big 4 firms [EY, PwC, KPMG and Deloitte] which could boost your CV. If you are able to impress the employers during your internship period, they will be sure to pull you back in.

"An additional highlight to your resume would be obtaining a degree from a well-recognised university where employers would be sure of the outcome of the quality of the graduates."

Jeron said he would recommend the University of London to anyone: “I could study at a well-known international university while staying in Malaysia with my family, and it was within my budget.

“At the end of the day, you gain the study skills and a very good understanding of what you have studied. You should get a job with ease.”

Watch an interview with Jeron on our YouTube channel: