Women in Business and Economics

Encouraging and supporting women in the University of Melbourne’s Bachelor of Commerce degree

We’re committed to ensuring gender opportunities at all levels of business studies. We know sometimes a helping hand is needed and so we’ve developed a series of supports to ensure studying a Bachelor of Commerce degree is accessible to as many people as possible.

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The initial years of this program will see the faculty trial and develop a series of supported programs aimed at secondary school students, undergraduate students and recent graduates. The program is scalable, with additional interventions able to be added as appropriate.

    • sheCommerce program; targeting girls in Years 9 and 10 – and expanding into Years 11 and 12 as the program evolves.  A series of 3-day camps to look at business and leadership, encouraging enrolment in high level maths subjects and familiarising students with the University campus.
    • Supported Study Groups, facilitated through faculty with a female Honours/Masters student advisor (in a paid stipend role).  Small groups of Year 11 and 12 students will be able to access group sessions to talk through VCE maths problems and prepare for exams.  Sessions can be held via Zoom or on campus, providing a way of familiarising younger potential students with University life.
    • Securing and promoting female-focussed scholarships for the Bachelor of Commerce
    • Female-focussed achievement awards or prizes at Y1 and Y2 of the undergraduate degree
    • Mentoring for Y2 or Y3 undergrads via FBE Alumni in relevant areas of business leadership, with opportunities for mentoring by program Patrons or other business leaders

    Business networking events for Y3 students, administered via FBE’s Young Alumni Committee.

    • Graduates connected to an alumni mentor for entrepreneurial support or career mentoring as needed
    • Women in Business networking events targeting younger alumni and recent graduates
    • Active online contact groups (managed via LinkedIn etc)
    • Funding for professional development opportunities for our female academic staff.  This might include participation in leadership programs such as Cranlana.


  • Up to 5 high profile graduates will be invited to act as Patrons for the program.  Patrons will be invited to attend a number of targeted activities each year (networking, lectures, dinners etc), and will be connected with up to 3 mentees each.
  • Alignment with professional networks such as Future Women, and opportunities for students to participate in conferences or professional development will also be explored.

Success - How will we know if we are making an impact?

A range of metrics will be developed to track responsiveness and increased participation.  Measures may include:

  • Target annual participation numbers in sheCommerce
  • Increased enrolment in Undergraduate degree over the next 3-5 years
  • Increased total value and number of scholarships offered to female-identifying students
  • Increased alumni engagement and participation in events and volunteering

Program Support

We are seeking to secure $500,000 to run this three year program, and welcome the opportunity to discuss individual or corporate support.

Based on an initial annual operating budget of around $165,000 the Faculty would aim to deliver an annual program which would include:

  • sheCommerce Camps
  • Study groups (10 x 1hr sessions per group)
  • Full (3 year) Access Scholarship for Bachelor of Commerce
  • Academic Achievement Awards
  • Networking Events

sheCommerce, 2023

More Information

For more information, or to discuss supporting this program, please contact:

Julia White │ julia.white1@unimelb.edu.au │0418 306 628

Kim Brockett │kim.brockett@unimelb.edu.au │0410 216 941