Shannon O'Brien


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  • Campus: University of Western Australia, Perth, WA

Shannon O Brien

What are you studying?

Accounting and Business Law.

How do you want to make a difference in the world?

I think that all the little good things we do in life add up and can make a positive impact on the world and other peoples lives. I want to be an advocate for equality and justice particularly in the workplace, to promote a society that is accepting of everyone for what that have to offer. Being a leader and setting a good example is important in any situation, and I believe that it is an effective way to make a positive difference in the world, by supporting and learning from others.

What you are interested in outside of Uni and work?

Outside of uni and work I enjoy volunteering at my local Surf Life Saving club, where I get to operate and drive the IRB (Inflatable Rescue Boat) and am working towards getting my Jet Ski licence, which I'm very excited about getting to patrol possibly at Penguin Island. I also have the travel bug and am saving up to go to Europe again and possibly on a contiki tour to see more of the world before I'm in a full time job.

If you had any advice for your fellow students about tackling university or preparing for the 'real' world, what would it be?

"Be present." A lady who gave a presentation at my school once told be to "be present" in where ever and what ever situation you are in, so you never miss out on opportunities. Networking is so important, and I think the earlier you start the better, to build up a good network of people, who you could be potentially working with one day. So be friendly and get involved as much as you can.

What was your first impression of studying accounting/business?

My first impression of studying accounting/business was the overwhelming amount of opportunities (travel, industry, positions, etc.) there are, if you know where to look and meet the right people. I also found that studying accounting/business is a fantastic life skill which is very valuable to have early, enabling yourself to be able to budget for your own life and to have a better understanding of how the global economy works.

Tell me how you first got involved in with accounting/business, what inspired you?

I first got involved in high school studying Accounting and Finance in Year 11 & 12 and getting to attend one of CA's 'Meet the Business Leader' events, which inspired me to continue with accounting/business to see where it would take me. Also some of my family overseas have studied accounting and work in the industry, so hearing their stories definitely encouraged me.