Spotlight on Business Organizations: Society of Women in Business

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With more than 1,500 members, the Society of Women in Business is the largest undergraduate business organization on campus. Founded in 2000, SWIB is a student business organization founded at Cornell that accepts all female undergraduates into their general body without an application or interview process.

“Many other pre-professional organizations on campus are very specialized and focused in their areas of work. But SWIB is unique in that it is very broad and provides exposure to a wide range of business industries,” said Shivali Halabe ’22, who along with Vivian Li ’21 serve as co-VPs of development internal SWIB.

Li and Halabe lead one of SWIB’s major projects, the Emerging Leaders Program, a semester-long program. After an application and interview process, more than 50 ELP members are divided into small groups consisting of an associate, a more senior SWIB member and a few other analysts.

Each group chooses a specific industry, such as investment banking or entrepreneurship, and teammates collaborate throughout the semester to research their individual topics. The end of the semester concludes with a final presentation by each group and feedback from the board.

A key event in SWIB’s Emerging Leaders program is the biannual trip to New York, where members have the chance to visit companies such as Goldman Sachs and Ernst-Young to learn about their work culture and network with current employees. . ELP alumni have completed internships and worked at companies such as Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Bloomberg, Mastercard, NASA and EY.

“The Emerging Leaders program really puts into practice what you learn in the classes and what you learned through these workshops, because often times just learning it isn’t as helpful,” Li said.

Besides ELP, SWIB hosts internship panels and a program called Change-Maker Chats. Internship Panels feature upper-class SWIB members and discussions of their personal internship experiences at top-tier corporations, while Change-Maker Chats invite women from the Ithaca community who have founded or are senior executives of a company to share their experiences as a woman in the business industry.

In addition, SWIB also offers several workshops for its members covering relevant business skills such as Powerpoint, Excel, networking and CV building.

With these primary goals of inclusivity, diversity, and women’s empowerment, SWIB strives “to surround every girl with a very supportive community with other women…and use that to strengthen her own confidence and skills and bringing them to the workplace,” Halabe mentioned.

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