10. ZAINAD KWAW-SWANZY, 23
School: University of Bristol
Course: Mathematics (MSci)
Zainab makes the upper region of the list because she has demonstrated leadership in an area where her election into a particular role goes against deep-rooted stereotypes and what society deems as the norm.
As the University of Bristol’s Maths Society President, and a black woman in a position of leadership within a STEM organisation, she is a role model in every sense of the word. The society is one of the largest and most prominent on campus and has an intake of up to 350 new students each year, so we are looking at a society in the region of 1,000 members combined. In this role, Zainab heads a committee of 10 members and chairs fortnightly meetings. She also leads on sponsorship pitches and negotiations. Her stellar work garnered her the University of Bristol Outgoing Leader Award at the Student Union awards in June.
The previous year, she set the precedent for her upcoming role, as Sports Secretary of the Maths Society. She launched both a netball and basketball team for the society. She also captained the netball team, ran training sessions and even designed the sports kit for the teams, including logos.
Zainab is a lead editor and one of the original members of the editorial team for burgeoning website Gal- Dem.com, which was founded by fellow Bristol student Olivia Little.
The website now has a team of more than 60 global writers, has received over 100,000 views since its launch and has been name-checked by mainstream media such as The Guardian.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Working at a financial firm, having started up a charity to encourage young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to study Maths at university.