Graduates of Catawba's Ketner School of Business are beating the economic odds of today's world by obtaining full time positions around the globe. While many graduates are experiencing the downfalls of facing tough economic times in today's job market, Catawba has been instrumental in helping these students on their path for success after college.
Elizabeth Renteria is a double major in Accounting and Economics & Finance. A Florida native, she came to Catawba on a tennis scholarship where she was top seed for her four undergraduate years. She received SAC Freshman of the Year honors and was MVP the past three years. She was President of Phi Epsilon Honors Society, Vice-President of SACC, a member of Alpha Chi, the Student Managed investment Fund (SMIF), the International Club, and tapped as a Junior Marshal. At this year's Awards Convocation, she was named the recipient of the Sherrill and Smith Award in Business Administration.
Liz completed a summer internship in the finance department of B/E Aerospace. As an intern, she used automations and excel to save the sales team seven days' worth of work a month, identified $250,000 of revenue at 100% gross margin for B/E, and created a revenue forecasting model that gave detailed insights into the sources of revenue for the company.
While at Catawba, Liz met an Australian member of the men's tennis team and will be moving abroad after graduation to begin her career. She has accepted a position as a financial analyst with Deloitte Touch in Australia in their business modelling section. There she will be working to provide insightful and value-adding support through financial and economic modelling solutions.
Josh Hill was the only one in his graduating class to complete an honors thesis and graduate with College Honors. He double majored in Accounting and Economics & Finance. His thesis is titled "SOX with Holes: An Investigation of the Loopholes and Omissions in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act." He said of his thesis that it "was the most academically challenging and emotionally satisfying project of my academic career. It was the perfect ending to my Catawba experience that has prepared me for the start of my professional life."
Josh was president of the Honors Council, vice president of the Dead Athenian Society (DAS), treasurer of Alpha Chi National Honor Society, and one of the co-founders of the Student Managed Investment Fund, (SMIF). He won the Alpha Chi National Council 2016 Regional III Scholarship, and was the recipient of the Whitener Medal and the Milliard F. Wilson Award for Excellence in Business.
He has accepted an offer for a graduate fellowship at N.C. State University to further his education in Accounting. This fellowship involves guaranteed employment at a big firm of his choice upon completion of his master's degree.
Alex Lee came to Catawba on a golf scholarship where he double majored in Economics & Finance, with a minor in math. He was a member of the Business Honor Society and Kappa Mu Epsilon, and was Freshman Class President.
"Catawba has prepared me for the professional world by allowing me to grow and reach my full potential in the classroom and in a professional setting," he said. "I have learned new concepts, ideas, and skill sets that have challenged me, and I know that those challenges have prepared me to take on the business world. Majoring in Economics & Finance is beneficial here at Catawba because it allows a student like me to touch on two different fields of study in great detail, while also integrating both of them into one degree. The best of both worlds!"
Alex has accepted an offer with Allscripts Healthcare Solutions LLC in Raleigh to become an associate business analyst. He will be under the supervision and leadership of 2004 Catawba alumnus, Christopher Goff.
Jevgenij Gamper is an international student from Lithuania, a student athlete, and a double major in Mathematical Finance and Economics & Finance. He was the recipient of the Dean Grove Award and was inducted into Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges. He was a member of Kappa Mu Epsilon, Business Honor Society, and was the creator of the Student Managed Investment Fund. In his final year at Catawba, he served as Team Captain of the swim team.
"At Catawba, I was able to realize my full potential in learning, reasoning, creating, and developing ideas of my own and of others. This is essential for running your own business or for being an employee," Jevgenij said. "Being focused on a career in finance, the Ketner School of Business and the Math Department faculty did an outstanding job in preparing me for a career in financial engineering."
After graduation, Jevgenij will attend a conference called "R/Finance" in Chicago which is focused on quantitative finance. He will also attend a Quant Summit conference in New York City this July, one of the largest conferences in the quantitative finance industry. Jevgenij will continue his studies at University of Warwick to earn his Master's and Ph.D. in Mathematical Systems.
Rafal Baran is an international student from Poland who is a Business major with an Accounting concentration. He was a member of the Student Managed Investment Fund, DAS, International Club, the Business Honor Society, and a student athlete on the swim team. He completed an internship with KPMG, one of the "big four" firms specializing in audit, tax, and advisory services, where he was offered a job after graduation. He also completed an internship with Phillip Morris International in Poland, the main European financial center of the company.
Rafal was the recipient of the Millard F. Wilson Award for Excellence in Business. Rafal will be continuing his post-graduate education at N.C. State University, where he is a fellowship finalist as one of the top 7% of applicants and a scholarship recipient. He will be working toward his Master's degree in Accounting with a concentration in Information Technology. His goal for next year is to pass the CPA exam.
"I traveled 5,000 miles to get an education from the Ketner School of Business and I have never regretted that," he said. "A tailored curriculum, together with classes made of individual and group work, perfectly prepare one for graduate school and for professional life. The amazing accounting program, which I have been concentrating on, allowed me to get my first-choice internship and be accepted into every graduate school I applied. Thank you KSOB!"