Andres Felipe Roa is a 27 year old Masters of Management student from Bogota, Colombia. He completed his undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering from La Universidad De Los Andes.
"You should take the opportunities that you find, perhaps you can never take them again."
Tell us about your hometown...What makes it special in your eyes?
Describing Bogotá is not simple, for me it´s special for the beautiful sunsets and the views of the Andean mountains. The weather is also special, because in the morning there is a cold breeze but the afternoons are dry and hot, however it can rain in any moment so you should always carry an umbrella.
In addition, in Bogotá you can buy delicious pastries and sweets. Overall, my favorite is have a couple of almojabanas, which is a a special bread with cheese , served with hot chocolate.
When did you realize growing up that you wanted to explore and get educated somewhere else in the world?
I reckon it was when I visited London in the summer of 2009, the atmosphere of the city and the support of my cousins and friends, gave me the courage to apply to study abroad after my undergrad was over.
What was the decision making process like that helped you arrived here in Melbourne?
I have a cousin that has been living in Australia for almost 5 years so he advised me to come to Melbourne. I did some research on Universities and academic programs and made my mind to come to a place different from Colombia and one with a multicultural atmosphere.
You have worked at JP Morgan before enrolling at UniMelb, what did you learn from that experience?
I learned that each person is important and can bring a unique value to the organization. I felt valued and challenged throughout the year I worked at JPMorgan. Overall I learned that each role has implications not just on my country but also towards others countries and people.
"I would define it as a peace of mind of what you desire and what you have achieved, been humble and helping others to reach their potential."
Where does Andres Roa get inspiration?
What inspires me is the hard work of my parents, they have played a big role in my life. Due that I grew up seeing them working hard to establish a successful family business in Colombia. This business is the result of the consistency and hard work of several members of the company, so this has inspired me to work hard every day to reach my objectives.
What’s a phrase or saying in your native country (and language) and why is it important to you?
Spanish is great for the different sayings we have, there is one I especially like that is “El que se vá para Barranquilla pierde su silla”, it means that you should take the opportunities that you find, perhaps you can never take them again.
What’s a place you’ve traveled that changed your perspective?
Armenia, which is a city in Colombia, this city suffered from an earthquake when I was a child, but I had the chance to visit it several times afterwards and the growth and sense of belonging of this city was inspiring.
If you like this profile on Andres, we think you may also like our profile on Maria Cruz. Click here to read.
Over your few semesters here, what is an idea that MBS has encouraged you to learn more about?
I would say that MBS has challenged my perception on what makes a company successful through time, and the importance, on any position, of applying and improving your communication and soft skills.
How will you define success in your career?
I would define it as a peace of mind of what you desire and what you have achieved, being humble and helping others to reach their potential.
When you leave UniMelb, what do you want to take with you?
I want a take the easy-going and relax attitude of this city, plenty of good pictures and memories with my friends and the attitude to always be learning and challenging myself to improve for the best.
Is there an industry or career path you see yourself taking? If so, which?
I see myself getting into the consultancy industry, it involves constant learning and full of challenges.
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