"The University of Birmingham is also in a wonderful location and students have many chances to get involved, either academically, through societies or with sport."
Henry Raschen graduated with a BCom Business Commerce degree, now Business Management, from the University of Birmingham in 1980. He currently works in London, United Kingdom, as Head of European Regulatory and Industry Affairs at HSBC Securities Services. We recently caught up with Henry to find out how his life and career have progressed since graduation.
After completing my degree, I qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Coopers and Lybrand, now part of PricewaterhouseCoopers. Following a number of years of working in auditing and corporate reconstruction, I took the opportunity to move into securities services. It is now my responsibility to identify changes in the financial regulatory and industry landscape, and to assess how those changes will affect the securities services business within HSBC.
I thoroughly enjoy my job as I have the opportunity to make a difference, both within HSBC and in commenting on proposed UK and EU legislation. The variety of people I deal with and the opportunity to travel are a bonus too.
Why Birmingham Business School?
The course content was the main reason I chose to study at the University of Birmingham. As a result of the ‘Module Outside the Main Discipline’ programme which allowed students to study modules of personal interest unrelated to their course, I was able to learn about the Soviet Union and political science alongside my course.
The University is also in a wonderful location and students have many chances to get involved, either academically, through societies or with sport.
Studying at Birmingham Business School and in particular, modules in company law, investment appraisal, business financing and portfolio theory, have been very beneficial to my career as these are subjects I have used throughout.
My degree taught me transferable skills; I learnt how to plan work, manage people, time keep and balance my responsibilities, from socialising to academic requirements.
I have delivered some guest lectures at the Business School over the last few years on corporate governance and financial regulation; it is a great opportunity to still be included in events at the University and to be so well informed of its continual progress.
"....we had some inspiring, extremely experienced and highly qualified lecturers, some of whom went on to key positions in industry and finance. Such exposure to knowledge and international guest speakers continually encouraged us to have an open mind, an invaluable lesson for life."
I found aspects of microeconomics quite tricky - it is not a subject I have ever managed to become overly interested in, unlike macroeconomics. The academic staff were always willing to help and instilled enthusiasm in their students which enabled me to overcome the challenging aspects of the course.
The Birmingham Experience
As well as having a wonderfully resourced library, we had some inspiring, extremely experienced and highly qualified lecturers, some of whom went on to key positions in industry and finance. Such exposure to knowledge and international guest speakers continually encouraged us to have an open mind, an invaluable lesson for life.
Although it has been 30 years after living in halls, I am still in regular contact with a number of good friends I met both in student accommodation and on my course.
As the University of Birmingham is a very international campus, I met a wide range of people from a number of different countries, cultures and backgrounds. Exposure to such differences broadened my outlook on life, a truly priceless lesson.
Tips and advice
Take advantage of the opportunity to study other areas of interest outside your main degree in your first year. Go to all of your lectures and seminars; ensure you read, amend and highlight your notes later on the same day that you write them – you will find your notes much clearer and more complete at revision time. Most importantly, use your time to get as involved as possible in the opportunities you have at the University of Birmingham, both academically and socially.
Find out more
Our BCom Business Commerce degree is now BSc Business Management.
Department of Management