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From Madrid to Sydney: Abad ’09 Pursues an International Career in Finance

by Katie Gortz on 01/08/2020

As marketing manager for a European asset management firm in their Sydney, Australia office, Lorelie Abad (Class of '09) promotes sustainability in the financial industry, a trend that she believes will become more mainstream in the future. She developed an interest in this unique aspect of the financial world because of its ability to bring about positive social and economic change.

When she was a senior at SLU-Madrid pursuing an economics major, Abad took on an internship with her now current employer, which afforded her firsthand experience applying in-class knowledge in the workplace. Her strong work ethic and contribution to the business led to a full-time position in a sales support role in the company’s Madrid office upon graduation.

After eight years in sales support, Abad transitioned to her current position as marketing manager in the firm’s Sydney office.

“The ‘global experience’ of my time at SLU-Madrid proved invaluable to my career, especially since my dream was to work for a global organization,” Abad comments. “I can easily connect and collaborate with people from different countries, cultures and time zones – something I do now on a daily basis in my job.”

Lorelie Abad '09 on a recent trip to South Africa

Abad had always dreamed of working for a global organization. Her work in the financial services industry has taken her to many parts of the world. An avid traveler outside of work as well, she poses for a photo during a recent trip she took to Cape Town, South Africa.

From SLU-Madrid to Sydney

Originally from Manila, Philippines, Abad’s first visit to Madrid was on a family vacation. She immediately connected with life in Madrid and imagined she would return one day. She later found herself pursuing an economics major at SLU-Madrid.

She recalls, “The whole SLU-Madrid experience opened my eyes and taught me so much more about the world than any college textbook. Classmates from Taiwan, Zimbabwe, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Trinidad & Tobago, Colombia, USA, Cuba, Spain – everyone with a different background, different life story, but respecting one another and coming together to share their views and cultural experiences from history, literature, art – and with some cervezas y vino! It couldn’t have been better!”

Abad furthered her global knowledge by studying abroad in Japan for a semester through SLU-Madrid’s exchange program. Living in an international context at SLU-Madrid and beyond forced her to leave her comfort zone and explore different cultures. When asked to give advice to prospective and current SLU-Madrid students, she advises them to “come up with solutions, not problems” in the face of challenge.