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CBS graduate aims to be first Indigenous female CEO

Never one to waste an opportunity, CBS economics and finance graduate Shelley Cable has a strong desire to promote and increase industry engagement amongst Indigenous Australians and high hopes of becoming the first Indigenous female CEO of an international company.

One such opportunity came in March, when Shelley was selected to participate in the GenerationOne ‘CEO for a Day’ program, an initiative that partners Indigenous youth with some of the country’s leading chief executives. Shelley was partnered with Commonwealth Bank Chief Executive, Ian Narev and put in touch with the Commonwealth Bank employee network, Mosaic.

“It was hugely exciting, a priceless, once in a lifetime chance to gain a snapshot into the typical day of a CEO”, says Shelley.  “You could have solved the problems of the world with the people around that table.”

It comes as no surprise that while studying at CBS, Shelley was a highly engaged student. She undertook a number of programs with Rio Tinto including an Indigenous cadetship, the Rio Tinto Aboriginal Scholarship Programme, an internship and a number of vacation programs.

And if that wasn’t enough, Shelley was also a John Curtin Undergraduate Scholarship recipient, a CBS student mentor, a mentor for the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME) and a program leader with Curtin Volunteers!, assisting with projects such as the World’s Greatest Shave, PMH Day and Relay for Life.

Shelley’s desire to promote and increase industry engagement amongst Indigenous Australians is clearly one of her strongest goals.

“The opportunities are there and they should be used as a platform to create positive change,” says Shelley.

In 2014, Shelley undertook the Aurora Indigenous Scholars International Study Tour, a unique opportunity that provides high-achieving Indigenous undergraduates first-hand experience of leading universities in the United States and United Kingdom.

She visited Berkeley, Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, NYU, Cambridge and Oxford, and feeling inspired, decided to apply to take a Master of Business Administration at Stanford, a university she believes will foster her passion for entrepreneurship and innovation.

When asked where her drive and sense of purpose have come from, Shelley refers to her student exchange experience while undertaking her Bachelor of Commerce.

“Based on the amazing time I had on exchange in Germany, I was inspired to continue to travel. Student exchange was a starting point for me. It gave me the confidence to apply to undertake the Aurora Indigenous Scholars International Study Tour and opened my eyes to opportunities I would not have known existed otherwise,” Shelley says.

Now working as a Business Finance Analyst with Shell, Shelley is keeping her eye on the prize and looking forward to the next chapter in her life.