A team of the Business School’s top undergraduate students has won a prestigious international women’s finance competition in Virginia.
It was the first time that the University of Sydney Business School had taken part in The William & Mary Women’s Stock Pitch & Leadership Summit, against internationally renowned schools including Berkley, Brown, NYU and Columbia.
“This is outstanding news,” said Dean of the Business School, Professor Greg Whitwell. “This is proof again that the Business School is world class.”
Deputy Dean Professor John Shields described the outcome as an “outstanding achievement, particularly given the nature of the competition and the importance of promoting finance as a field every bit as relevant to women as to men.”
The team was made up of 4th year combined degree finance majors Alexia Photios, Joy Chen, Katherine Guo and Alice Yang.
“Traditionally stock pitching has been quite male dominated and a lot of women feel quite daunted or intimidated by that,” said Alice. “But I think the importance of this competition is to not only encourage women to have a go, but to make them realise that they’re just as capable of succeeding as their male counterparts.”
“Women in the finance industry are really important because we think differently to men and are capable of bringing a diversity of thought to the finance profession and I think that’s an asset to any firm in the industry,” said Katherine.
“I think that there are so many talented finance students who are women interested in joining the industry, so hopefully we can encourage them to step up and join,” added Alexia.
The team said they were excited that the competition gave them a global perspective on finance, international exposure and the chance to meet like-minded women in the finance industry. They noted that their evaluation and presentation skills had improved from the competition.
“The Business School was really supportive of our preparation,” said Joy. “They organised meetings with industry professionals who gave us feedback on stock and helped us to prep for Q&A. Our lecturers and tutors have also been constantly giving us feedback. It’s been a really steep learning curve and a lot of preparation.”
Professor of Finance Susan Thorp initiated and facilitated participation in the competition, Dr Angelo Aspris selected the team and coached the pitch content, and Dr Sean Anthonisz arranged extensive advice and feedback from his network of investment professionals and analysts.
“We are really excited that these talented students have taken the opportunity to compete and we hope this leads to further opportunities for them and other women in finance,” said Professor Thorp.