ZU Student Lands 1st Place at the EY Corporate Finance Woman of the Year Awards

08 Mar 2021

Zayed University (ZU) student, Shama Al Hosani, has been recently named the winner of the Ernst & Young’s (EY) Corporate Finance Woman of the Year (CWFY) award for the UAE, following a confront with seven shortlisted finalists from across the country.

Organised by the global professional services firm (EY) and its corresponding youth council, along with the support of the UAE Youth Council, the CFWY competition aims at encouraging Emirati women to pursue careers in the private sector, particularly within the corporate finance industry.

Al Hosani, 21, Emirati Senior Accounting student, mentioned going through three phases in the competition, the Elevator pitch, Individual interview, and Group activity, which determined the finalist to represent the United Arab Emirates in the Virtual International competition this coming April 2021 – with the chance to win a three month-long, all-expenses-paid EY internship taking place in 3 countries of her choice.

“After going through all the three phases of the competition. I was delighted to be announced the final winner of the UAE. This competition was a remarkable experience that gave me insight into the world of Corporate Finance and Strategy and Transaction. It gave me the opportunity to apply the knowledge I have to real business cases and meet very intelligent and accomplished women from the industry who share my passion for corporate finance,” Al Hosani said.

She further added: “Through this competition I interacted with EY professionals who helped me dig deeper into the complex domain of Transactions. I am honored to represent the United Arab Emirates, and I’m thrilled to have had the opportunity to participate and gain extraordinary experience from a global platform.”

Explaining the three phases of the competition, Acting Dean of the College, Dr. Fatima Al Ali, said: “Initially the students would need to introduce themselves, explain past experiences in the field, as well as mention notable achievements to the judges. The second phase of the exercise is a focused interview, to scope the students take on a number of exciting challenges in the industry, such as assisting clients to operate more efficiently, risk management, foster growth and inspire confidence.”

She further added, “Finally, EY judges move to activity-based measurements, which includes the students take on a business case-study and prepare a full business plan. The students need to apply critical thinking to analyze the case and come up with innovative ideas.”

The contest, which was held online this year due to challenges caused by the global pandemic, enters its 4th year. The EY Corporate Finance Woman of the Year programme has since spread to 21 countries worldwide – including the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.