I always had to work diligently, think on my toes, and most importantly, give my best in every endeavor. Before I knew it, striving for excellence became my second nature, as I succeeded in local and national-level academic competitions and mock board examinations, and ultimately, the CPA Board Exam.
I am Richard B. Saavedra, and I graduated in 2012 from the Ateneo de Davao University with a degree in BS Accountancy. In May 2013, I placed 1st in the Certified Public Accountant Licensure Examination – the first one from Mindanao to take the top spot in the Board in recent years.
After the Board Exam, I joined Sycip, Gorres, Velayo & Co. (SGV & Co.) where I worked for 5 years and reached the position of Associate Director/Manager. During my stay with SGV & Co., I managed the audits of the largest companies across various industries. I constantly worked with business owners and executives, all the while managing audit teams that were composed of the best and brightest CPAs in the country.
I recently obtained my Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from the Asian Institute of Management (AIM), the country’s leading graduate business school. I graduated with distinction from AIM and thereafter passed the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Level 1 Exam, a post-graduate international professional qualification for finance professionals.
I attribute my success to the rigorous training I became used to under the BS Accountancy Program of the Ateneo de Davao University School of Business and Governance (ADDU SBG). The high quality of instruction was matched only by the high standards of academic performance that the students had to maintain. I always had to work diligently, think on my toes, and most importantly, give my best in every endeavor. Before I knew it, striving for excellence became my second nature, as I succeeded in local and national-level academic competitions and mock board examinations, and ultimately, the CPA Board Exam.
I also had some of the finest and most experienced professors in ADDU SBG. These professors honed my skills in the fields of business, accounting, and finance – proficiencies which I found valuable in the corporate world and in graduate school. Besides technical competencies, the professors were also concerned with the holistic development of students. With the ADDU SBG, I learned to be confident, to be articulate, and to work with teams. I also had the brightest business students in Mindanao as my classmates. The school became a place where the most competent people were gathered, and I learned from everyone I worked with.
My advice to future business students will be this – if you are driven, willing to put in the hard work, and eager to learn and enrich your talents then definitely join ADDU SBG. The prestige of the school, the quality of instruction, and the rigorous training will help you get a head start in your career. While in ADDU SBG, learn as much as you can from the people around you and build strong and lasting connections. Go to class with an open mind – ready to take in new ideas but always willing to challenge and improve them – and be confident to express your own ideas as well. Take leadership roles and find time to pursue things you are passionate about outside of class. Learn as much as you can from the experience and hone your skills in the safe academic environment that the school provides. In time, you will have developed holistically and will be more than ready to take on your aspirations – that is the ADDU SBG advantage.
Written by: Mr. Richard B. Saavedra, CPA, MBA, CFA | Top 6, 2007 Nursing Licensure Exam | Top 1, 2013 CPA Licensure Exam