The UNSW Business School is committed to gender equity and inclusion by embracing the principles of UNSW's first Gender Equity Strategy to enshrine inclusive practices and enable students and staff of all genders to feel valued, respected and able to be their authentic selves.

To this end, each year UNSW Business School appoints x5-7 Women in Business Ambassadors (WIBA) to support and uplift female-identifying students across the undergraduate disciplines where females are typically underrepresented:

This is an exciting leadership development opportunity for 2nd or 3rd-year female-identifying undergraduate students who are studying either Risk and Actuarial Studies, Information Systems, Banking and Finance, or Economics and have a passion for the promotion of young female participation and educational development in these areas.

UNSW Business School believes it crucial for the student voice and experience to be incorporated into the work the UNSW Business School Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) team carries out throughout the year and the WIBA play a leadership role within our student engagement, representation, and advocacy as part of the UNSW Business Schools 2021+ strategy.

The UNSW Business School EDI is honoured to introduce you to one of our 2024 Women in Business Ambassadors: Anna Sharma, Bachelor of Commerce (International Business) & Information Systems.

Dream career or industry to work at: I want to work in Cybersecurity.

Why did you choose to a Business Degree? And what led you to study at UNSW?

When entering university, I was unsure about what degree to pick as I hadn't made up my mind on what I wanted to do in the future. I wanted to pick a degree that would offer me a lot of flexibility in the workforce and would be useful yet versatile.

Since UNSW's Commerce degree has lots of different majors, I believed this degree would introduce me to lots of different fields within the business world and help me determine my ideal career path.

You can major in Accounting, Finance, Taxation, or even Cybersecurity!! My degree offers a lot of flexibility and provides exciting opportunities to learn new things every term – cementing that studying a Bachelor of Commerce was the right choice for me. 

How has your experience helped you make a positive impact in your degree, career and/or community?

studying at UNSW Business School, the events I have attended, the opportunities I’ve experienced and the programs I chose to enrol into, have all been monumental in shaping my career aspirations. I've been able to network with other students and alumni, engaged in mentoring programs, and participated in case competitions, and other activities that have enhanced my university experience by helping me build critical soft skills.

I've been able to join societies such as Women In Tech, become a PASS leader, be a guest speaker for student-led panel discussions, etc. All of these opportunities have helped me make lifelong friends, enhance my employability standing and make some amazing memories during my university experience. 

How has UNSW prepared you to lead in the workplace and community once you graduate?

UNSW has prepared me to lead in the workplace by offering opportunities for me to develop important skills such as leadership, communication and networking. I've taken courses such as COMM2222 and COMM2244 which have allowed me to interact with real businesses (e.g. government agencies, AI Startups, etc.) and to develop business-relevant skills.

I have also developed key communication skills and have built up my confidence levels for the future. I've been given the opportunity to get involved with clubs - moving from subcommittee positions to Director positions, enhancing my leadership skills to feel more involved within the UNSW community. 

How is UNSW Business School helping to improve female representation in business? And who would you like to help improve this?

UNSW Business School is helping to improve female representation in business by offering more opportunities that are exclusively targeted to female-identifying students, helping them bridge the representation gap.

For example, the UNSW Business School offers a Business Mentoring Program, with a specific stream called Women in Business Mentoring Program. This program enables females-identifying students to seek out mentorship and guidance from successful UNSW Business School Alumnae working in the business sector and are matched with students to guide and mentor throughout the program.

Drawing on these successful women’s expertise, their experiences and learning more about how they got started in their careers provided me with insight and clarity about how I can start looking for my own dream career.

Additionally, a lot of the partner mentoring firms are run by CEOs who happen to be female, providing female students with more role models within the industry, whose success they can be inspired by and learn from. 

What inspires you to champion gender equality and female representation?

On 11 May, during the graduation ceremony at Benedictine College (America), an American Football player named Harrison Butker was asked to make a commencement speech. During this speech, he made several remarks about the role of women in the workforce, saying:

"Some of you may go on to lead successful careers in the world, but I would venture to guess that the majority of you are most excited about your marriage and the children you will bring into this world. I can tell you that my beautiful wife Isabelle would be the first to say her life truly started when she started living her vocation as a wife and as a mother."

At the precise moment, for what would have been a very proud moment for many of the female students attending that graduation ceremony, someone with power and authority stripped down all of their achievements and reduced their purpose in life to performing a traditional gender role which women around the world have been confined to for centuries.

While all roles should be equally important, valid and respected, speeches such as this take away from the equality that women have been fighting for, and therefore prove the continuing need to champion gender equality.

Incidents like these are harmful to women, and in developing countries, the obstacles faced by women are more severe and intense. These situations highlight that while we may have made progress in terms of gender equality, we've still got a long way to go before women all around the world are treated with equal respect and given the same opportunities. 

Why did you apply to be a Women in Business Ambassador and what do you hope to achieve?

As I enter my final year at university, I wanted to find a way in which I could give back to the school community which is why I decided to apply to be a Women in Business Ambassador. I've been so fortunate to participate in several mentorship programs, networking events, etc. where I've gotten to talk to women working in business, who have shared their advice with me which has helped me transform the start of my career. I've been given great interview tips, and have been encouraged to pursue different opportunities, and I'd love to use my own experiences to pass this information on to someone else.


UNSW Business School is committed to identifying and addressing the inequities and challenges facing women in higher education and research. We have implemented several strategies to ensure equity in student recruitment, retention, development opportunities and the promotion of women in both academic and professional staff roles.

Find out more about this and other Women in Business initiatives here