What was your main reason to start a career in treasury?

My interest in financial markets started when the stock markets crashed in October 1987. As a 15-year-old boy, I was stunned at how companies could be worth 20% less overnight. I wanted to know more about that, resulting in a study of business economics at Tilburg University.

I found courses such as corporate finance, treasury management and derivatives the most interesting, so that after my studies I started looking for a position in treasury and I found that as a trainee at FMO. On my first working day, I had to analyze the cash position, and when I was allowed to place the excess cash (USD 2 million) on an overnight deposit, I definitely devoted to the profession and I still am.

Why did you start with the RT program?

Following a successful year in the trainee program, the treasurer offered me an exciting opportunity to join the treasury department. Although I received great training on the job there, I was also happy to be given the opportunity to follow the post-doctoral Treasury Management course. While the hands-on experience in treasury was invaluable, I enrolled in the RT program to deepen my knowledge, particularly in the legal and fiscal aspects not covered in my university curriculum. But shortly after the start of the course, I realized that the interaction with fellow students and building a network of peers were (at least) just as valuable.

Are you still in touch with your peers?

The weekly contact with a group of peers who are in the same phase of their career was one of the most positive aspects of the Treasury Management program for me. It was an ideal way to quickly build a network of peers, and I probably learned more from them than from the theoretical part of the program. While our weekly contact has lessened over time, I’ve maintained relationships with some colleagues

Did following the program influence your relation with your family, friends and/or colleagues?

Taking the course takes quite a lot of time, not only the number of hours of lecture and travel time, but of course also preparation and studying for the exams. Fortunately, I started the course a year and a half after my graduation, so I was still used to studying. Also, we had no children yet and my wife was also following a course, that made it easier for me to study in the evening or at the weekend than for some fellow students. So, if you are considering following the program, my advice would be to do it as soon as you can!

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