CMA IMA scholarship recipient

Cebu City native Iane Frances Canizares, 22, has already accomplished a lot in his field, and the future is looking bright as well. In conjunction with the IMA and Wiley, Iane has already passed his CMA exam in an impressive fashion. He was one of only a handful of test-takers to be awarded a Student Certificate of Distinguished Performance for his high score on the exam. “Once this pandemic is over,” he says, “I am looking forward to taking advantage of the perks the IMA has to offer.” Right now, Iane is taking advantage of his time at home by preparing for his next challenge, the CPA exam.

What is your current employment status, Iane?
Iane: I am not yet employed since I’ll be sitting for my Certified Public Accounting license first. However, I’m still currently applying to a few Fortune 500 companies with the hope they’ll wait for me while I take the CPA exam, which will begin on May 30, 2021.

You took the CMA exam before the CPA exam? Why?
Iane: Yes, I took the CMA first. We’re supposed to take the CPA first, but with the pandemic going on, the CPA was postponed, so I focused on the CMA. That’s why I wasn’t able to jump into working, due to the pandemic. If things were normal, I would have been able to take all the exams and then start working. It’s a little disappointing.

Tell me about your experience studying for the CMA exam.
Iane: It was very challenging since we are in the middle of a pandemic. I started in March and enrolled in the online review center for the CMA exam with the help of Wiley despite the pandemic going on. Here in the Philippines, we have different levels of lockdown happening. Back in March through July, it was very strict. Now it’s more of a general quarantine which started back in October, and we have a little more freedom.

So you had time to study then, right?
Iane: Yes and no. I had quite a lot of free time, but if you have a lot of free time you need to make sure you are committed to your studies. Because with access to the internet, Netflix, and gaming, you can get very distracted. So, the way I see it, it’s really about commitment. How committed are you to this field and preparing for your exams?

Tell me about your experience with Wiley study materials. Did you feel they suited you and helped you out with the CMA exam?
Iane: Wiley provided a very complete package for my review. It has a great interface with technology, it has textbooks, and it has flashcards. For my purposes, it’s very complete. It provided me with everything I needed, which I was happy about.

Can you tell me about your academic experience?
Iane: I received a Bachelor of Science in Accountancy and graduated magna cum laude. It’s a five-year program in school, and I graduated in December of 2019. Management science is really my favorite subject. That’s why I committed to getting my CMA license.

What has attracted you to management science?
Iane: Back when I was in college, I was solving different problems related to management science, and it seemed to me that it was much more practical compared to other subjects like audit or financial accounting. There was less memorization and more of a focus on analysis, which I felt was more practical. I could see myself doing this kind of work for my professional career. That’s why I opted to take the CMA first. It’s much more practical, covering subjects like data science and legal science which are really more relevant for the future. And I also feel that the IMA provides added benefits to this kind of work and networking.

Can you tell me about those benefits?
Iane: There are many benefits to being a member of the IMA, and I look forward to taking advantage of them. Even now, when you can’t do much in person, there are virtual events. But networking is very valuable, especially to someone like me just starting out. It’s simply a great resource.

Studying for the CPA exam will be challenging for you too because it has all those subjects that require more memorization.
Iane: Yes, it’ll be very challenging. It’s a lot of memorization in subjects like taxation, which is really a very challenging subject. But I’m ready for it–I’m ready for anything!

You must be anxious to start your career. I realize you don’t have an official job yet, but where do you see yourself in five or 10 years?
Iane: Well, I see myself going deeper on the financial side. I see myself digging deeper into financial assets and climbing the ladder for different positions that involve financial analysis and accounting responsibilities.

What else are you doing while you’re at home? You’re not just studying, are you?
Iane: I do have a routine that I like to follow. In the morning I usually work out and do some meditation. In the afternoon, I play video games to relax. I also collect and tend to plants, which is one of my serious hobbies. I collect different types of succulents and cactuses. Not big plants, really rather small plants. I have a mini garden in my room for aesthetic purposes. I really enjoy watching them grow and taking care of them. I especially like the cactuses, because they are least likely to die, and they don’t require as much care.

Start Your CMA Journey

Iane saw the value of getting his CMA certification because it prepared him with practical knowledge that is applicable and relevant to the future of accounting and finance. He successfully prepared for the exam with Wiley’s CMA Exam Review Course, which he says provided him with everything he needed. Try the course yourself with a 14 Day Free Trial, and start your CMA journey today!

Curious about the difference between a CPA and a CMA?

Both the CPA and CMA provide their unique benefits, and it’s not a matter of one credential being better than the other, but a matter of which one is better for your career and interests. Interested in learning more? Be sure to check out our new resource, CMA vs CPA: Key Differences in the Accounting Certifications.