Tamati Smith

'I feel as if the people and the culture at UC has made studying more enjoyable...'

  • Tamati Smith

(Ngāti Porou)

Studying towards a Bachelor of Commerce in Accounting

After playing in rugby league over in Australia for two years, Tamati decided that he wanted to develop the skills he needed to create a career outside of sport.

‘I had fun and learnt a lot over there living away from home and it was a good experience. However I wanted to further myself,’ he says. ‘My father also has a huge influence on me. He has always supported me through everything I choose to do and he has always wanted me to study at a tertiary level to set myself up!’

Moving back to family in New Zealand, Tamati heard about UC’s Commerce department through friends and decided to pursue a Commerce degree.

Tamati has since found his studies in Accounting to be exactly what he was looking for.

‘The people! The environment! The problem solving aspect!’ He says. ‘With what I study I feel as if new challenges are always arising, same as any other degree I guess, but I have always enjoyed numbers as opposed to English or arts and science.

‘My career goals involve becoming a chartered accountant in the next five years, and from there to work my way up in my field, hoping to become a flexible, “all round” accountant. The long term goal would be to travel with my work and when the time is right return home and hopefully become a partner or open my own firm!’

With his career goal being the main drive of his studies, Tamati was recognised with two NZICA Leading Light Scholarships and the NZICA Ngā Raumanako Māori Accounting Scholarship, an award for aspiring Māori students in accounting with excellent academic grades. The scholarship will involve an internship with an accounting firm partnered with the National Māori Accountants Network to help Tamati get experience in the industry.

Tamati has made sure to enjoy UC’s community as well, saying his favourite aspect of studying is the chance to work with other students.

‘I am a really social guy and everyone at the University is really nice, you can have a conversation with anyone, and you are always meeting new people! You learn a great deal from others and have fun at the same time. We are all here for our reasons but are studying towards a common goal, to be qualified in the fields we enjoy, and I feel as if the people and the culture at UC has made studying more enjoyable than it would be otherwise!’

As such, Tamati encourages other students to make sure to have fun with their university experience to make the most of the opportunity.

‘Take it head on and find a group of like-minded people! It is always good to have people to go over things with other than lecturers who are on the same page as you. You will find that by connecting with others it will help; through sharing knowledge and competing against one another, study can be enjoyable and you can get the results you want.

‘UC is extremely cultured, and everyone has time for you given you don’t be shy! Work and play.’

Hannah Ting

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Zach Taylor

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