Sabrina Janski: 2016 Best and Brightest

Sabrina Janski SMU

Sabrina Janski

Southern Methodist University, Cox School of Business

Hometown: Centennial, CO

High School: Cherry Creek High School

Major: Accounting

Minor: Spanish

Favorite Business Courses: Evolution of American Capitalism, Management, Advanced Readings in Spanish.

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

Alpha Kappa Psi Professional Business Fraternity

  • Historian: May 2014 – December 2014
  • General member: Spring 2013-present

Alternative Breaks Service Trip Participant

  • Day of Service October 2015: Dallas, TX – “Uplift” Dallas
  • Spring Break 2015: Cartago, Costa Rica – Children and education
  • Spring Break 2014: Taos, NM – Animal rights
  • Fall Break 2012: Austin, TX – Hunger issues in low income neighborhoods

Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, Alpha Xi Chapter

  • Recipient of the Gloria Swanson Nelson Award for Panhellenic Spirit (November 2015)
  • SMU Centennial Homecoming Candidate representative (September 2015)
    • This position was voted on by my chapter members and I represented my organization during Homecoming week by participating in all team activities and participating in candidate interviews.
  • Recipient of the Alpha Xi Alumnae Chapter Scholarship for chapter and campus involvement (Spring 2014)
  • Executive Council, Panhellenic Affairs Vice President: January 2015 – December 2015
    • Attendee of the Real Leadership Conference (January 2015)
  • Elected Officer, Recording Secretary: January 2014 – December 2014
  • Initiated Spring 2013

National Residence Hall Honorary: This organization is composed of the top 1% of student leaders living on campus and is guided by the two core values of service and recognition.

  • President: May 2014-May 2015
  • Administrative Vice President: May 2013 – May 2014
  • General Member: April 2013-present

Professional Development Activities

  • PwC Elevate: July 2014 – Two-day summer leadership program
  • KPMG Discover: July 2014 – Two-day summer leadership program
  • AT&T Hack-a-Pitch: Spring 2014 – One-day idea-generation program
  • PwC Explore: December 2013 – One-day leadership program

Program Council – This is one of the two main programming bodies on the SMU campus and organizes fun campus-wide events

  • General member: August 2012 – May 2014
    • Outstanding General Member award recipient (May 2014)

Residence Life and Student Housing

  • Resident Assistant – This is an on-campus housing leadership position that is compensated through free room and board but entails numerous responsibilities in the areas of interpersonal skills, leadership skills, and administrative duties.
    • August 2013 – present
  • Virginia Snider Residential Commons
    • Commons council member: August 2012 – May 2013

Southern Methodist University

  • BBA Scholar for the Cox School of Business
    • BBA Ambassador – assist with admissions related activities
    • Scholarship recipient (four-year merit based scholarship)
  • Founder’s Scholarship recipient (four-year merit based scholarship)
  • Member of the University Honors Program
  • SMU-in-Seville study abroad program ambassador – promote program at study abroad fair and be available to students who have questions about the program
    • Winner of a study abroad photo contest (November 2015)
  • Student Senate: Deborah Brames Michel Endower Scholarship recipient (one-time leadership based scholarship, received Fall 2015)

Where have you interned during your college career? (List Companies, Locations and Roles)

Alterna in Seville, Spain

  • Created an end-of-year report for the Alterna Special Employment division
  • Sorted and filed invoices for company-related activities
  • Utilized Microsoft Excel to perform organizational and other business functions
  • Organized resumes for job applicants obtained from online employment websites (Example:

Future internship beginning January 4th, 2015: Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Dallas Assurance group.

Describe your dream Job: My dream job would be to photograph for National Geographic magazine. I have always loved photography and my passion for discovering new places would marry perfectly with that activity.

What did you enjoy most about majoring in a business-related field? I enjoy being able to study topics in class that I can immediately relate to daily life and current events. While some topics in school might not be as easily applied to a real life scenario, I find it interesting reading case studies for class about prominent companies and learning more about the complex issues that are at work in the world.

Where would you like to work after graduation? I would love to begin working as a full time associate for Pricewaterhouse Coopers.

What are your long-term professional goals? I hope to one day combine my extracurricular passions with my chosen professional field. I am not quite sure what this will look like in terms of a job title, but I am excited to see what the future will bring. I am confident that the valuable skill set acquired through the accounting major will be a solid foundation for any career that I pursue over time. 

“I knew I wanted to major in business when…I was in high school and participated in my high school DECA chapter. Competing in role play and more time-consuming written events in the human resources and financial operations categories allowed me to realize how much interest I had in the business world. Role plays involved handling scenarios that you might encounter in the real world in various business departments. In the human resources category, competition topics were often related to addressing customer complaints. The written event category involved writing a 30-page report and preparing a ten minute presentation with my teammate about our chosen company, Wells Fargo. We specifically focused on how Wells Fargo might be able to utilize social media. Even before high school, I could have sensed that business was in my future because as a grade-school student I attended summer camps at the Young Americans Bank and loved them.” 

“If I didn’t major in business, I would be…working in a field where I could make a positive impact on young people, possibly student affairs.” 

What was the happiest moment of your life? This summer I got the opportunity to study abroad in Seville, Spain which included living with a host family, taking a class in Spanish, and completing an internship. This immersive experience was so rewarding because I have been dedicated to learning the Spanish language since middle school.

Which academic or personal achievement are you most proud of? When I was in eighth grade, I was presented with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: The chance to travel to Beijing, China with 30 other adopted teens living in the United States. This trip was sponsored by the Chinese government and Chinese Children Adoption International (CCAI) and included the opportunity to sightsee, to learn some basic phrases, and (more importantly) to gain a greater understanding of my heritage and history. Part of the trip included a visit to an orphanage much like those that all of the teens had been adopted from. This was the first time I had experienced such a dramatically different culture from the one I am accustomed to and it was the first time I had ever traveled so far away from home without any family or preexisting friends. This whole experience left such a meaningful impression on my life and I am so appreciative of the life I have in the United States. This trip made me even more passionate about giving back by serving others and encouraged my curiosity about the rest of the world.

What animal would you choose to represent your professional brand? I would choose a dog because they are loyal and perceptive of the emotions of others as well as playful and intelligent.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I am thankful every day for my mom because she has been the greatest supporter of my dreams and my failures. She has always encouraged me to try new things and step outside of my comfort zone at the times when it mattered most.

Fun fact about yourself: As a child I was contracted with a modeling agency and starred in the Vacation Bible School summer music videos for four years.

Favorite book: John C. Maxwell’s The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. As a member of my sorority’s executive council, we read a few chapters each week and discussed them during the first semester of our term.

Favorite movie: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Favorite musical performer: Sam Smith at Red Rocks Amphitheatre

Favorite vacation spot: Anywhere with a breathtaking view (a killer sunset is always a plus).

What are your hobbies? I love practicing yoga because when I step on my mat nothing else matters for those 60 minutes and it helps me stay active. I love traveling and I daydream of places I can visit in the future because there is so much of the world to see and truly so little time. I enjoy doing crafts and cooking because they are creative outlets that produce a satisfying end result.

What made Sabrina such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2016?

“I have known Sabrina since she was in high school. From the first time we met, I knew she was going places. She has that perfect blend of academic excellence, combined with a strong desire to make her community a better place. We had high expectations for her at Cox, and she has exceeded everything we could have possibly planned for her. She is humble, graceful, brilliant, and giving. SMU prides itself on creating “world-changers.” I have no doubt Sabrina will continue to work hard to make her community, and the rest of the world a better place. She certainly has made quite an impact on SMU and the Cox School.”

Jim Bryan
Associate Dean, BBA Program
Southern Methodist University, Cox School of Business

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