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Man on colourful background showing logistics across the world

Marc Cowan - BA (Hons) Business Studies, 2013

Marc Cowan - BA (Hons) Business Studies, 2013

Marc Cowan - BA (Hons) Business Studies, 2013

Just four years after graduating from Leeds Beckett, Marc has been granted an O1A American visa - a type of visa that is only given to individuals with an extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business or athletics industries by the United States government. To put this in perspective, there were over 10 million visas issued in 2016 for the USA and 0.0025% of people are awarded this category. Other people who’ve been awarded this visa include Nobel award winners and many more prominent people.

Often called the “Logistical Entrepreneur” Marc has had multiple achievements across different sectors and is the highest ranking individual for his age in the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transportation in the UK which holds over 17,000 members. Marc has also developed a three-spoke system and procedures for the logistical placement of data and its security across the globe, one of his proudest achievements. Marc says “My career started off as I travelled the world across 30 countries and studied in the UK, USA and China, where I became fascinated with how the world operated. Whether I was the passenger or my checked luggage was travelling through a different route to the same destination, the intricate processes always kept me intrigued; that and personal challenges that I’ve been exposed to, which included losing my luggage and later having my data compromised after a network was breached.

“I wanted to ensure this would never happen again and started to notice many downfalls to improve the logistics sector due to my attention to detail and observations. I continued to focus on the finer details that may have been missed by others, along with constantly questioning the current processes and combining newer technologies within these strategies.

“It then enabled me to start developing my own unique solutions to these various problems by utilizing logistics. Following this, I was headhunted by one of the world’s leading data security companies, where my work was recognized and I continued to clearly demonstrate my strategies and developments to their most prestigious clients, which were CEOs of major multi-national corporations and Fortune 500 companies. After bringing them on-board with my ideas, they continued to be implemented internationally and ultimately secured the world through my complex processes, operations and logistics.

“My career quickly progressed and led to many of my successes across several sectors through utilising my original developments and breakthroughs in logistics. The sectors that I’ve been able to significantly impact include: the logical placement of data and its security to ensure major corporations around the globe are kept secure; the distribution of consumer products from the popular ABC TV Series - Shark Tank, and finally the transportation of ornamental tropical fish around the world, after developing strategies to ensure tropical fish can travel further distances under less stress.”

All of these achievements have led Marc to be recognised by many major influential experts within the field and being widely acknowledged across the industry within significant publications such as The Huffington Post, World News and many other noteworthy industry publications. These substantial contributions have ultimately enabled him to rise to the top of his field as a leading expert within logistics and the intricate operations throughout.

When Marc first enrolled at Leeds Beckett University he’d already started a successful company providing web services but he knew he needed to develop his knowledge in business internationally, and that attending University would open many more doors to opportunities and experiences he wouldn’t otherwise have had. Marc says “I looked at universities around the country and very quickly heard about the various opportunities to carry out a study abroad and work placement within their courses. I decided very quickly, that in actual fact both of these experiences were extremely different and both tremendously valuable and the best option would be to try and complete both in the same course.

“To my surprise, many universities only allowed for either one or the other, but never both combined. That was, until I came across Leeds Beckett University. Leeds Beckett was the only University in the country that enabled students to carry out both of these in the same four-year course. Therefore, it made my decision extremely easy, as these opportunities were two vital areas that I wanted to achieve. Secondly the University had just built a brand new state of the art facility where we would be located and this certainly became the icing on the cake.

“On reflection, it was certainly the best decision that I’ve ever made, as both of these individual experiences have changed my life completely. One enabled me to spot an organisation that I would continue to start later on in the UK and has grown to over 1000 active members. Secondly the work placement enabled me to travel the entire USA, working side by side with extremely knowledgeable and accomplished individuals, where I learnt many skills. These skills and pearls of wisdom have enabled me to succeed to the level that I have today, in particular having the ability to be accepted on the Study China programme and studying in Beijing Normal University, where I had the opportunity to speak in front of hundreds of people at the opening ceremony, including the Vice-Chairman of Education in China. This was only due to being a student at Leeds Beckett University. I also had the opportunity to carry out a work placement in Indiana, USA, where I was able to learn the skills to dramatically expand an organisation in the UK, which empowers students and enables them to become leaders of society. Finally I was also able to raise thousands of pounds for charity with other entrepreneurial Leeds Beckett Students through the various events that we created, which included sky dives too.”

The next part of Marc’s journey will be living in Los Angeles and travelling across the USA, where he’ll continue to observe, analyse and challenge many of the current ways we work, until then, constantly thinking of ways to improve these processes. Marc says “I hope to continue my success of impacting the sector with many more significant developments and breakthroughs. I’d also like to help others advance their careers and encourage them to overcome any challenges, through passing on the knowledge that I have gained over the years, in order to make the most effective impact in the world. I want to continue to leave a lasting legacy, ensuring companies run in the most efficient ways, one process at a time.

“Growing up in the age of advanced technology, I always believed that we view the world differently and this led me to notice opportunities that might have been missed by others. I strongly encourage other young entrepreneurs to do the same and constantly question the ways we work. As new technologies and mobile apps continue to be developed, they’re changing the world we operate in and continue to lend themselves to logistics too. Never be afraid to try out new ideas, ask questions, contact others who have been there before you and always keep pursuing your goals. Never be afraid to demonstrate your ideas to top-level executives or feel overwhelmed. They are only people at the end of the day and if you believe in your own work, they too - will believe in you.”