Christian Whitfield: Alumni profile
Deb Curtis, Dean of Senior Studies remembers Christian Whitfield (Head Boy 2013) as a “conscientious, hardworking student and committed leader of the student body.” Since leaving school he seems to have really kicked into overdrive. His intensive university studies are keeping him very busy but his commitment to his long-term vision of a career in politics started to yield results following his successful election as President of the Bond University Student Association in 2016.
Where do you see yourself after University?
I am graduating in October 2017, certainly on the home stretch of my combined Bachelor’s (Commerce and Law) and I am looking to pursue entry level positions in either investment banking or management consulting. I’d like to do some time offshore as I build a professional career in one of these two fields.
A longstanding dream of mine is to be the Prime Minister and a move into the public sector and politics is very much still on the cards, just a little way down the line.
What’s involved in being President of Bond University Student Association (BUSA)?
I ran for the Presidency of the peak student body (BUSA) and over a two week campaign of debates and election days, secured the office for the 2016/2017 Committee. The Committee is a large group of eighteen students, and nine months into my term I am still surprised, in the best way possible, how many parts of the student experience we can change in a meaningful way.
Being President has been the most rewarding position I’ve taken in my life and is extremely demanding. My role is, on average, 40hrs a week alongside my studies. These hours are mainly taken up by liaising with the University, championing student causes and organising events - the exposure and experiences I have had have been unreal; from lobbying Education Ministers to sitting on disciplinary boards.
What’s your advice to current students studying in their final HSC year?
Year 12 was my favourite year at CCGS for no other reason than I made a conscious decision to say ‘yes’ to everything that I could. That is not to say I didn’t prioritise my studies, I did, but the skills I learned and memories I made doing the things outside the classroom not only contributed to good marks but also set me up for a really positive university experience.
If you head off to university, don’t fall into the trap of letting the courses define your time. Student politics has consumed as much if not more of my time over the last two years than my coursework and it is those skills that I am leaning and drawing on as I move into my professional career.
How do you keep in touch with old school friends?
Being interstate is definitely a roadblock in maintaining a lot of close friendships from high school, especially considering lots of my obligations keep me in Queensland. However, phones work both ways so if you’re willing to make the effort when you have a spare fifteen minutes that goes a long way. I always make an effort to see those I am still close with when I do venture back to Sydney or the Coast, and there are a number of teachers I am still in close contact with. CCGS is a great foundation to build the types of lasting friendships and relationships that will withstand distance as a factor.