2019 Best & Brightest: Parbs Anant, New York University (Stern)

Parbs Anant

New York University, Stern School of Business

“I enjoy immersing myself in experiences that challenge my conceptions of the world.”

Fun fact about yourself: Up until the age of four, I lived on a farm in my home country of Guyana and had fresh cow milk every day, which was a major benefit of having a father who was a milkman.

Hometown: Queens, New York

High School: Townsend Harris High School

Major: Business Administration, Concentrating in Economics

Minor: Postcolonialism

Favorite Business Course: Professional Responsibility & Leadership with Professor London

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  1. NYU Breakthrough Scholars Leadership Program
  2. Stern Student Council, President (2018-2019)
  3. Stern Student Council E-Board, Vice President of Operations (2017-2018)
  4. Stern Student Council, Vice President of the Class of 2019 (Fall 2016)
  5. NYU Prague Student Council, Vice President (Spring 2017)
  6. NYU Cohort Leadership Program, Senior Orientation Leader
  7. Stern Legacy E-Board, Spring 2018
  8. Stern International Studies Program Competition, 1st place

Where have you interned during your college career?

  1. Goldman Sachs: Securities Summer Intern, New York
  2. Ernst & Young: Financial Services Office Launch Intern, New York
  3. Columbia University: Teaching Assistant and Resident Assistant, New York

Where will you be working after graduation? Goldman Sachs, Securities Analyst

What did you enjoy most about your business school? I love how international Stern is and how easy it is to study abroad. Growing up in New York City, I have always been surrounded by people from all over the world, but I never thought I would get the opportunity to visit the places they called home and spoke so fondly about. Through Stern, I studied abroad in Prague, Czech Republic and visited countries in Europe and even in Africa. In my junior year, I visited Hong Kong through the International Studies Program and studied MTR, their public transportation company. In addition, I am exposed to new cultures each time I step into a Stern classroom. There is representation from all over the world and I am lucky to have made so many new friends with diverse backgrounds.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? The Social Impact Core at Stern has dispelled the myth that you can’t do good for society and also be financially healthy. I have gotten exposure to the different ways that I can be a strong business leader who also does well for her community.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? I would advise future business students to explore past traditional business roles. When applying for jobs, I focused on the roles that I heard my friends talking about (e.g., consulting, investment banking, and sales and trading). However, there are so many places you can go with a business degree and I would encourage everyone to put in a little bit more research to find the job that aligns with their passion and their degree.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? I am surprised about how omnipresent companies are in the lives of people all over the world. For example, I am currently writing these responses in Luxor, Egypt where I spent time souvenir shopping in a local bazaar. As I was passing by the shops, I noticed Pepsi and Coca-Cola refrigerators selling products that I thought were only found in big cities. Walking through these very local towns where the denizen’s main forms of transportation is on horses and donkeys, I couldn’t help but think about how the business of big companies infiltrate even the most remote places.

“If I didn’t major in business, I would be majoring in or studying…languages. The more I travel, the more I realize the importance of understanding the world through the eyes of other people. And the best way to do that is to learn how they use language to make sense of the world around them. After studying Latin and Spanish in high school, I learned that some things are not translatable. There are so many nuances in how different cultures approach relationships, culture, food, beauty, and so much more that can only be understood in native languages. This is a struggle that is especially true for African writers who wish to communicate aspects of their tradition but can’t be felt as deeply in English as it would be in their native tribal language. For that reason, I wish to get closer to understanding these cultural nuances by studying languages.”

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? I was influenced to pursue business in college because of my parents’ approach to personal finances (or lack thereof). After they moved to the United States, my parents didn’t understand the importance of having a good credit score and other good financial habits. I wanted to delve deeper into the subject because I had a lot of important questions that my parents couldn’t answer for me.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of winning the International Studies Program (ISP) competition. Every year, Stern juniors take the ISP class and business trip to visit a country in either South America, Europe or Asia. In addition to immersing themselves in the local culture, we also study a company to investigate ways we can add value. Upon returning to NYC, we created a presentation outlining a specific recommendation we had for their company. All juniors from all locations compete against one another and then the top three finalists present on a stage in front of their peers, professors, deans, and 4-5 judges, who are leaders in their industries. The reason I am most proud that my group won is because instead of concentrating our efforts in putting together an elaborate idea and making nice slides, our idea focused on a simple idea that is sustainable and is good for the environment.

Which classmate do you most admire? A fellow NYU Breakthrough Scholar and Islamic Finance Group (IFG) club president is one of the most inspiring and passionate people I have ever met. In addition to her heavy class load and the time she dedicates to mentoring underclassmen, she wanted to contribute to her Stern community by founding IFG, Stern’s first club dedicated to teaching Islamic finance. Despite struggles establishing the new organization, she did not lose sight of her goal and was ultimately successful in establishing the club. Surrounding myself with strong women in business like her has instilled confidence in myself and has pushed me to be better.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? When my parents immigrated to the United States, they left behind their family, friends, and the familiarity of their homeland. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the sacrifices they made to make sure I have the resources I need to get an education. Along with their endless encouragement to pursue what makes me happy and to travel and experience other cultures, my parents are the main driver of all of my achievements.

What are the top two items on your bucket list? To be fluent in a new language every year and to start a mentorship program for low-income students.

What are your hobbies? I love to sing, dance, eat new foods, travel, and listen to music from different countries.

What made Parbs such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2019?

“Parbs embodies the talent, drive, and potential that first-generation students across the country bring to their college campuses. She is omnipresent in the Stern community – welcoming first years during orientation, organizing school-wide social activities, participating in business competitions, and leading student government meetings. To Parbs, leaders are defined by the community they build, not the titles they hold. As she says, “It’s not about being the voice for other people a lot of times. It’s about opening space for other people to use their voice.”

Parbs possesses the rare quality that merges an activist’s spirit, business savvy, and a collaborative approach. She’s constantly mindful of the stories and voices that might be unheard at Stern, vigilant about holding power to account, and committed to creating a stronger Stern community for all students. She approaches this work with deep gratitude for the opportunities she’s been afforded at Stern. As Stern Student Council President, Parbs recognizes the importance of paying it forward and opening to door for future Stern students to thrive. We’re excited to see what Parbs accomplishes in her career, and we’re confident she will continue to be an inspiration to Stern students as an alumna!”

Corey Blay
Director, NYU Breakthrough Scholars Leadership Program



Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.