2nd-year student, Bachelor of Business in International Business and Strategy
He would highly recommend studying business to other students, says Kylan Waters who is currently completing a Bachelor of Business in International Business and Strategy, supported by a scholarship from the Keir Trust Foundation.
“If you want to get a bit of a grasp on our current economic dynamics and how corporations impact our lives and model our future, I’d highly recommend studying business. With business, you could take the skills and go into a completely different subject or career and you’d still find many ways to apply the skills from your business degree.
“I’ve enjoyed experiencing the university lifestyle, meeting new lecturers, trying new subjects and really just challenging myself in any and all forms of life. For me, that has been the best highlight of university so far and I wouldn't have been able to experience any of it if I wasn't studying.”
He says he has always loved solving problems and coming up with strategies.
“When I was growing up, I’ve always enjoyed problem-solving, whether it was in sports and games or in the classroom. In my senior high school years, I also became interested in product development, business consultancy, innovation and entrepreneurship. Studying international business captured my interest, especially since I could include minors in entrepreneurship and Japanese as part of my degree. I’d like to do business in Japan one day and I think this degree will give me a real big head start for the business world.”
Being able to participate in the programmes for aspiring entrepreneurs has been one of the highlights of Kylan’s time at AUT so far.
“I was fortunate enough to receive a scholarship to participate in the 10-week CO.STARTERS programme, which helps students and entrepreneurs pursue their own innovation or a business they have in mind. The programme was great and enabled my business partner Ria Sharma and I to push our business idea to a new height.
“It also directly led us into doing the X Challenge entrepreneurship competition where we were fortunate enough to place third. We entered the X Challenge with our idea of a sustainable alternative to the plastic bread clip; an idea we initially came up with in our last year of high school. The X Challenge was quite a big step for us, and rewarded us with a bit of prize money as well as a lawyer package to assist in intellectual property or patenting of our product.”
The experience was priceless, he says.
“We met many new students with great ideas and individuals who were extremely experienced in their field of expertise. We were provided with an abundance of business resources and tools to progress our idea and further our understanding of the business realm. It was experience and knowledge that Ria and I will always have throughout the rest of our lives and we’re thankful for that.”
Advice for other students
Now in the second year of his studies, Kylan has some great advice for other students.
“My overall advice for future students would be to give everything a go, be kind, and be confident. Really dedicate yourself to what you enjoy and make sure that you pick a subject and a career that you enjoy, no matter how low or high paying it may be. You should be obsessed with it as much as possible.”
It's important to find balance, he adds.
“I've seen a lot of different approaches to uni – from being extremely dedicated and stressed out to really laid back but low performing. You need to find a balance between the two. You should never be sitting at 100% of your capacity; you always need to have time to relax and find the balance. If you think about it like a car or an engine, you’d never have an engine running on 100% throttle at all times. I really think you need to be able to balance your studies with finding time to relax and do other things you love.”