- Year completed 2014
- Current position Forensic Senior Consultant, KPMG Australia
- Degree(s) Bachelor of Arts
- Major(s) Criminology
After graduating from Monash with a Bachelor of Arts in 2014, majoring in Criminology, Adriana returned to complete her Masters in International Relations. Completing her postgraduate studies in 2017, Adriana commenced her career as a Regulatory Officer at the Department of Justice and Regulation in Victoria, before heading to Sydney to work as an Electorate Officer for a Member of Parliament. Adriana then jumped into the corporate sector and is now a Forensic Senior Consultant for KPMG Australia.
2018 – Forensic Senior Consultant, KPMG Australia
2018 – Justice Liaison Officer, New South Wales Police Force (Jan - July)
2017 – Electorate Officer, Parliament of New South Wales
2017 – Master of International Relations (Counter Terrorism & Political Violence)
2016 – Regulatory Officer, Department of Justice and Regulation, Victoria
2015 – Course Advisor, Box Hill Institute
2014 – Bachelor of Arts (majoring in Criminology)
Why did you choose to study Criminology/Sociology majors?
I originally chose to study a Bachelor of Arts in order to complete a double degree of Arts Law. I intended to transfer after my first year, with the intention of majoring in psychology with a minor in criminology. However, attending the lectures and tutorials as well as reading the materials, I realised that I really enjoyed criminology.
I spoke to one of my criminology tutors who opened my eyes to all the different opportunities available in the field, so I changed the structure of my Arts degree. I went from majoring in psychology, to undertaking a double major in criminology and sociology. I loved both areas of study and felt that they complimented each other nicely.
Why did you choose to undertake a Masters?
I took a unit called International Crime and Justice which led me to develop a real passion for terrorism studies. That lead me to looking into how I could pursue my studies further. Given that I had enjoyed my time so much at Monash, I decided to look at what they had available for postgraduate students, which is when I found the Master of International Relations. This master’s had three streams that I could choose from to major in, including Counter-Terrorism and Political Violence. I’m so glad to have undertaken my research thesis in this area.
What are some highlights from your time at Monash?
I loved the interactions during my lectures and tutorials and the diverse perspectives that everyone brought to those sessions. It was incredibly motivating to be able to learn with and from my peers, but also from the amazing teaching staff. In particular, I loved learning from Dr Susan Carland and Dr Waleed Aly during the lslam and Modernity unit and, of course, I gained so much from the time spent with my thesis supervisor Katrina Lee-Koo.
What do you believe is the value you have gained from your Arts degree?
I gained a lot from having the freedom to explore certain topics of interest and to be able to research, learn and broaden my horizons. I look back on the times I spent at Monash with great fondness. Throughout the course of both degrees, I was always motivated, interested and constantly engaged.
An important part of my current role as a consultant is to be able to communicate effectively and to work collaboratively with a diverse group of people, whether it be client stakeholders or members of the project team. Having undertaken so many group projects in my Arts degree, I was well prepared to work effectively with various stakeholders and across different project teams in order to meet project strategies and timeframes.
When I was working as an Electorate Officer for the NSW Parliament, I was able to work on some prominent issues within our society. One in particular was the High-Risk Offenders Bill, which enabled me to use a lot of what I'd learnt in my master's degree around those who are convicted or accused of terrorism related offenses. It was tabled in New South Wales Parliament. To be able to put the deep knowledge gained from my master's degree into practice was very special.
I’ve particularly noticed the immense value of my researching and report writing skills and the fine-tuned written and oral communication skills I developed during my Arts degree. They're incredibly strong skills that you need in the workforce, especially in consulting.
Can you tell us about your role at KPMG?
I’ve had a pretty varied career to date, which I’ve enjoyed. I am currently a Senior Consultant within the Forensic Division at KPMG. Over the past two years, I have mainly worked within the Financial Services service line. In this time, I have focused on financial crime, specialising in anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing.
A key part of my role is understanding both domestic and global anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism legislation, regulations, policies, practices and global standards, while being able to effectively communicate this information to key stakeholders and incorporating it into relevant procedural documentation.
What has been the most fulfilling part of your job?
The most fulfilling part of my role are the constant opportunities that I am provided with to learn. Since joining KPMG two years ago, every engagement that I have worked on has been different and I have been able to gain valuable experiences across diverse areas of forensic practice.
A related and equally fulfilling part of my job has been the opportunities I have had to study again. I recently completed my Certification as an Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (with the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists). I also love taking the opportunity to attend related financial crime seminars to further progress my knowledge and hear from industry experts.
What advice would you have for students looking to pursue a career similar to yours?
Take chances. When I originally applied for KPMG, I didn’t think I would be a preferred candidate as I didn’t have a qualification in finance or accounting. However, it turned out that this was a very outdated way of thinking about the business. Instead, I’ve been able to provide a different perspective which is considered very valuable.