Commercial banking graduate / Bank of New Zealand - Hamilton, New Zealand
Ngapuhi, Ngati Whatua
- Bachelor of Management Studies with Honours
- Strategic Management
- Te Paewai o Te Rangi
"I’d heard the Bachelor of Management Studies with Honours (BMS(Hons) degree had a mean reputation, so I thought, this is going to be something special," says Cathan Bowler.
"It really opened my eyes up to so many new opportunities that I didn’t even know existed."
Since graduating in 2020, Cathan quickly secured a commercial banking role in Hamilton - and he is ambitious for his future career.
"I have ended up at BNZ when I was offered an awesome opportunity in their grad program in December last year. It’s been so good; I work in our business team focusing on lending around $1-$5 million in Hamilton."
He says he had a fantastic time during his four years at the University of Waikato.
"I’ve definitely changed and grown as a person since I started uni. I’ve learned that I do my best work in the morning, so I’ve learned to be more organised. But I also made sure I had an awesome time and attended all the fun social events, like the famous Wine and Cheese Evening run by the Waikato Management School Students Association (WMSSA)."
Cathan's favourite subject was Strategic Management, which he decided to combine with Finance as a double major.
"Everything you learn in those subjects is extremely practical, so I know I’ll be able to walk into a business tomorrow and apply all the skills I’ve learned straight away," he says.
"I got involved with competing in case competitions in my first year at uni – this is where you’re given several hours to devise a viable business strategy for a real-life business to increase their revenue and profits."
In 2019, Cathan was given the opportunity to travel to Florida and take part in an international case competition, which he describes as an amazing experience.
He says the extra year of postgraduate study that makes up the fourth year of the BMS(Hons) was really valuable. "It gives you an edge when you’re applying for jobs."
"My advice to future students would be to talk to your lecturers and tutors about all the opportunities available to you, because some amazing doors will open for you."