Image: Jamie Kidston
BComm (Hons) 2017, LLB (Hons) (2016)
Helen Ping is currently an Associate Lecturer and PhD candidate at the ANU Research School of Accounting. Helen is involved in the delivery of Accounting, Tax and Law courses at both postgraduate and undergraduate levels. She is also an academic supervisor for the CBE internship program.
Helen received the CBE Award for Excellence in Tutoring in 2019 and has recently won the 2020 Vice-Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Tutoring or Demonstrating. She completed her double degrees in Commerce and Law (both with Honours) from ANU.
Helen’s career reflections:
What motivated you to pursue a PhD?
My mother is a researcher in the field of Comparative Literature and her passion for research has a deep influence on me. I always remember that she believes research allows you to be consistently curious about the world, to pursue your interests and to challenge yourself in many different ways. I developed a similar view about research during my Honours year when I had the opportunity to work on a project of my own and focus on a problem where my interest lies. The rewards of becoming an expert and contributing to advance knowledge in a given area seem amazing to me.
Will you follow a career path in academia or industry?
I am open to different opportunities and challenges after graduation from my PhD. I really enjoy the academic environment of working in a university and I have a real passion for teaching, which stems from the personal satisfaction I obtain by supporting students to learn something new and the numerous benefits it has on my own understanding. But at the same time, I am also interested in how things work in real-world contexts. As I have a special interest in the area of Tax, it would be wonderful to be able to learn and observe the practical, hands-on approach to resolving tax issues in the industry.
Top three pieces of advice to current students who are thinking of undertaking PhD study and research in the future.
I know that a PhD may sound very challenging to you, but it is also very rewarding once you’ve overcome all of those challenges.
If you have experienced a sense of excitement while working on a project in an area that you are interested in, it is very likely that you will enjoy the opportunity to acquire deep knowledge and insight about a problem or issue through undertaking academic research.
A PhD will open up more opportunities for you. Even if you find that a career in academia is not for you, you still come out of your PhD with a Dr title. PhDs are prestigious in industry and government and identify you as an expert in your chosen field of research. You will also have a set of important skills (advanced critical thinking abilities and communication skills) that will be immensely beneficial to your career and life journey.