Acquiring His Canadian Credentials | Irfan Siddiqui’s On-Campus BBA Story

Alumni Success

July 21, 2020

How can you earn an on-campus business degree in less than two years, while also working full time and pursuing a Chartered Professional Accountant designation?

That was the quandary Irfan Siddiqui found himself struggling to answer in 2017 when faced with the reality that, in order to further his career in Canada, he needed a Canadian degree.

“When I started struggling for the job in Canada…it was because 90 per cent of the companies where I went for interviews and applied for jobs asked for Canadian experience and Canadian education,” he explained.

“So that was the main reason I wanted to pursue my career further in accountancy and in business. And when I had the opportunity to get a Canadian education, I felt like it was a good idea to enhance my experience and my capabilities to work in Canada.”

That’s when Siddiqui discovered Yorkville University’s Bachelor of Business Administration degree program, offered in Toronto out of Yorkville’s 2000 Steeles Ave. W. campus.

In his research, Siddiqui said he found that Yorkville’s BBA was not only the lone program he could find offering the late afternoon and evening classes he required to accommodate his busy work schedule as a payroll manager at a local human resources firm, but also the only one to offer him a generous package of credit transfers that took into account his previous education and experience.

“I was able to finish my degree in one and a half years, because I had already taken a lot of courses…for my CPA and I also had a degree from back home, so those courses were exempted from the Yorkville BBA degree,” he said.

Being able to juggle his studies with his work was also important to Siddiqui because he wanted the opportunity to attend classes on campus, rather than through Yorkville’s online BBA program, in order to interact in person with his teachers and classmates.

“I wanted to interact with the personal experiences of other people in my courses, and I think it was very worthwhile. It was very good, fortunately, to sit with them and discuss with them the course content and to share my opinion and listen to their opinion,” he said.

“My favourite part of the program was the discussion questions that were part of the course, because they gave me the opportunity to put my opinion and my experiences to the class and teacher, and for them to share their own experiences, too…Those real-life experiences are really valuable and give you an idea of how different businesses react to certain situations.”

Now that Siddiqui has completed his Yorkville BBA with a Specialization in Project Management, he said his focus is on continuing his Canadian education.

“Now that I have an undergraduate degree, I’m over a major hurdle…to get a more advanced education,” he said, noting that he’s currently working towards completing his advanced-level CPA, while also intending to pursue a part-time MBA in the near future.

“In five years from now, after I have completed these degrees, I see myself on a bigger level – trying to step into a board of directors position.”