Two DBS graduates have tied for top spot in an award that recognises outstanding achievement.
Deakin Business School (DBS) graduates Emma Black and Catherine Mason are the co-winners of the Bowater Trust Medal for 2018.
Each year, this prestigious prize is awarded to a DBS graduate who is considered to be the best all-round undergraduate student on the basis of academic merit, extra-curricular activities and ambassadorial qualities.
In its 31-year history, this is the fourth time that two DBS graduates have tied for top place, showcasing the high-calibre of Deakin’s business students.
Catherine completed a Bachelor of Commerce (majoring in Management and Human Resource Management) and is also the recipient of the Alfred Deakin Medal.
She gained further recognition for her academic efforts by achieving a Dean’s Merit List award along with a Best Final Year Student award (for her course) and says it’s a great honour to be joint winner of the 2018 Bowater Trust Medal.
‘It is so rewarding to be recognised as the best all-round undergraduate student and I feel very proud of my achievements throughout my time at Deakin.’
At a personal level, she also describes the recognition as ‘second to none’.
‘I’ve put absolutely everything into my studies whilst trying to maintain a balance and give back to the community. In the latter part of my degree I juggled study and full-time work. Being awarded this medal means so much, given that I refused to let my studies suffer when offered a great position at my current workplace.’
Catherine is the Human Resources and Risk Coordinator with the Cranbourne Turf Club and was delighted to have secured the full-time role straight after completing her degree.
Currently, she’s focusing on OH&S and employment-relations issues and says from a professional perspective the award is significant.
‘My employer was extremely accommodating and always encouraging me to always put my studies first. This allowed me to prosper and inspired me to put absolutely everything into each and every unit of study. It is fantastic to be able to reward my organisation and, given my recent new position, I feel they now have even more confidence in my ability to benefit the organisation.’
Co-winner Emma Black completed a Bachelor of Commerce (majoring in Marketing) in 2018 and agrees that receiving the Bowater Trust Medal is a great honour.
‘What I love about this award is that it’s not just about academic success but also contribution to the Deakin community,’ she says.
‘Giving back to the community is something I strongly value so to be recognised for this is something I’m very proud of. Professionally, this award will be a great reminder of what hard work, commitment and dedication can achieve but also the importance of giving back and supporting those around you.’
The award sits amongst a number of others accolades Emma has received during her time at DBS.
She is the recipient of the 2017 Deakin Student Residence’s Social and Community Award (for her contribution as a Residential Leader at Burwood Student Residence), the 2018 Royals Award for the best second-year student in Marketing and in 2019 also received the Australian Football League’s award for best student in Sports Marketing – a unit she completed in her final semester.
‘I was also the first 1st year student to be a PASS Leader and I continued in this role for the core subject of marketing throughout my entire degree. I really enjoyed being able to help other students in their studies but I also learned a lot from the students which consolidated my understanding of the core concepts of marketing,’ she says.
Now working in a graduate role as an Accessories Marketing Analyst with the Ford Motor Company of Australia, Emma is applying her Deakin-degree skills on a daily basis.
‘My studies were very beneficial because I apply the skills I learnt throughout my degree I every single day at Ford. The internships I completed whilst at uni also enabled me to have “real world” experiences which made my transition to full-time work much less daunting,’ she says.
She is now looking forward to the many opportunities that are available within the organisation for future career development.
‘My goal is to be in a management role and hopefully contribute in a meaningful way to the development of this company. I also plan to return to Deakin in the future to complete my MBA and continue expanding my knowledge and expertise in this field.’