Vishwa Bhayani

Always push each other up

  • Surat, Gujarat, India
  • Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting and Finance)

What made you choose the Sobey School?

It was a very spontaneous decision for my family. We had been searching for universities in the US, UK, Canada and Australia. During that period, there was a university fair at my high school; the amazing people from SMU recruitment were at a booth. My parents, sister and I fell in love with SMU and the Sobey School of Business. After researching the Sobey School of Business, it fit the bill for what we were looking for. A few months later, I found myself entering the Loyola Residence for the very first time, and I have loved every moment since!

What are the three things you accomplished before coming here that you are most proud of? 

Proud moment: Black belt at age 4I was made head girl of the high school I attended in 11th grade. I wasn’t the popular choice since I had just moved to that school and was the ‘new kid’. By the time I left that school when I moved back to Oman in 12th grade, I managed to gain the love and respect of all those around me and I was told on numerous occasions I was one of the best leaders the school has seen – this is definitely one of my proudest accomplishments.
  2. This one is very old, but it definitely still makes the list. My sister and I both practised karate as kids. I attained my black belt at 9 years of age – the physical exam was very, very hard (picture an adult man running away from the Sensei because he was scared, and another coming down with fever due to stress) – and at the time I was one of the youngest to achieve that in my city.
  3. I have changed 5 high schools from grade 8-12. Everywhere I went, I managed to adapt. To me, this is one of the qualities that can help a person live anywhere successfully and I am proud to always be able to say that no matter where I am, I will be fine. 

What are the three things you accomplished here you are most proud of?

  1. In my second year, I ran for the SMUSA board. I wasn’t very confident at all in terms of being voted in. In fact, I was petrified I would be the least popular choice. But, I went for it anyway and with the support of my amazing circle of cheerleaders, I made it. Most definitely one of my proudest SMU moments.
  2. All the volunteer work I did – I believe all the volunteering experience I gained helped me develop and flourish in a way that I had never really explored back home in India or Oman; mainly because volunteer opportunities were not as readily available or availed of in the academics-focused society. I was able to touch people’s lives in a way that humbled me.
  3. Representing SMU at the national level thrice with Enactus SMU. This is very special to me because I remember taking part in elocution competitions at school as a kid and totally freezing on the stage due to stage fright. Being able to represent SMU was a proud moment each time not just because of my pride as a Husky, but also because the opportunity afforded to me through these events helped me really uncover and develop my passion for public speaking.

Who inspires you?

My friends, mentors and family. I find inspiration all around me everyday, and I consider myself so very blessed. Each person teaches me something different. Case in point - this philosophy of mine is a lesson from my best friend, one of those inspirations. He taught me to look for the good in other people and learn from them. My parents have always taught my sister and I that we are each others pillars of support and that we should push each other up always. I now apply that to all the people around me.

What is your big audacious dream? How do you plan to make an impact?

My big dream is to reach as many youth as I can and to equip them with knowledge to understand how money works; to make sure they are never only working for money, but that their money is also working for them. In other words I want to financially empower as many people, especially youth, as I can.

In your own words, what impact has the Sobey School had on you?

The Sobey School has given me the foundation I need to be able to become my own person, working towards my dreams and looking for and encouraging the best in everyone around me. My experience here –in the classrooms as well as outside – has helped me become the person I am today. And I am proud to say the person I am today is an improved version of the Vishwa that landed on the Stanfield airport five winters ago, and I truly believe it can only get better from here!

Tell me about one of your hobbies.

One of my hobbies is cooking. I used to watch my mom make rotis (one of the most common types of Indian bread) and I was always so fascinated by how she would roll it into a perfectly round and even shape. Of course, when I tried my hand at it the first time, I am pretty sure my rotis resembled the shape of every country known to man – that had to be my best performance in geography ever! I believe that’s where my love for cooking began, and then my sister and I learnt a lot of the basic dishes at a pretty young age. Even today, I like experimenting with new dishes, although unfortunately I do not get enough time - ergo I am usually too lazy - to cook frequently.