January 2020

When it's not all dinner reservations at Dorsia; The women of accounting and finance

image of Ms Kiera

I think it’s extremely beneficial and inspiring to be able to hear the stories of these women who attended the same university as I am currently, and am grateful I participated in the meeting and unlearn all I thought I knew about the accounting and finance world.

How AFM and case competitions go hand-in-hand!

Photo of Fahad

This year, after completing all of my co-op terms, I decided to join the UWaterloo team for the McGill International Portfolio Competition (MIPC). While the prize money was a good motivator, I figured I could also come out of this competition gaining more skills at my disposal.

A trip to the UK – no passport required


There aren’t many opportunities in life where you will have the privilege to compete on an international stage, and even fewer chances to do so as a student representing your university. So, when I was invited by the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) to represent the University of Waterloo at the 2020 McGill International Portfolio Challenge (MIPC) alongside three of my peers, I knew this was an opportunity I could not pass up.

Striving to build a strong team


I think one of the best things about participating in case competitions is getting to experience the benefits of being part of a diverse team. Each of my team members had different strengths and abilities, although we were all in AFM, we were in different years of the program and had different interests and backgrounds. Looking back, the diverse experiences among my teammates helped forge the strengths of our team and offered me a unique opportunity to learn from them.

From email to experience!

Photo of Nathan

One hot summer night, I was off-handedly checking my email, looking to see if there was anything I had to do before my upcoming 2A academic term. There were many emails, but one email about a “competition subsidy program” piqued my interest.

Our way to STRIVE!

Photo of Rocky

I would never have thought that we would place 2nd in the STRIVE Conference competition. I’m not saying that we do not deserve to win, I am just so thrilled to see this result from my first ever case competition I participated in.

A personal win for my First Ever Case Competition!

Photo of Tiffany

Regardless if we win or lose, I believe that it is special to represent your school at these kinds of events as it encourages us to STRIVE to be the best we can be!

Navigating co-op and my future as a first-year AFM student

Photo of Julia

Launch Your Career is a must-attend event!

The Pros and Not-So-Cons of Case Competitions

Photo of Winston

I was pulled back and forth when deciding whether I felt I should enter the case competition with a group of friends…“It would be fun”…“But it would take too much time”… “I could meet new leaders in industry”… “But what if we lose”.

So, naturally, I weighed the outcomes with a pros and cons list.

From Classroom to the Lang Tax Case Conference

Photo of Alicia

There is no better time to try new things than in this virtual learning environment! In early November, I participated in my first case competition with a few friends at the University of Guelph’s first ever Lang Tax Case Conference.

Why you should jump into your first case competition


Next time you get an opportunity to register for a case competition, I strongly suggest you do it— you won’t regret it. When I was in my second year of the AFM program, I had an intense interest in competing. I had seen my friends and peers find success when competing and I wondered if I could as well.

How the Launch Your Career conference helped prepare me for co-op

Photo of Grace

I was not exactly sure what to expect about university or co-op. Job application? Who is she? Despite all of this, the Launch Your Career conference organized by SAF opened my eyes to a wide array of opportunities that I would have been too scared to think about months ago.

Standing out as a professional

Photo of Vishnu

I know how daunting the thought of a job search can be. For this very reason, as September came to an end, I was eager to attend the Launch Your Career event!

Learning how to network and stand out!

photo of Nicholas

Hi, I’m Nicholas B. and I’m in my 1A term of the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program. The story I have for you is one of seizing an opportunity and achieving greatness. Anyone can get lucky, but it takes a true Waterloo Warrior to make their own luck and ensure greatness.

How small things add up and you can accomplish something big!

Photo of Johnson

Recently, I participated in the Schulich RISE Strategy Discipline Case Competition, where delegates from various prestigious Canadian universities compete with each other by solving a complex business problem.

Our tips for competition success!

Team photo

Our names are Joyce, Effy, Danielle, and Muhammad, and we competed in the Schulich RISE Case Competition in the Entrepreneurship discipline. After two days of hard work, we emerged with a third place win! 

Current news and Crews: Life as an AFM student at Imprint

Photo of Saihaj

Hey Warriors! How’s it going? My name is Saihaj, and I’m a first-year student in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program. Fun fact: I am also a Reporter with the school newspaper, Imprint!

Participating in the first ever virtual Schulich RISE Competition!

Photo of Saloni

My teammates and I participated in the first ever virtual Schulich RISE Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) competition earlier this term. It was definitely an interesting experience... 

Beyond the classroom: RISE case competition!

Photo of Bianca

I think that participating in and winning the Schulich RISE business strategies case competition has showed me the benefits of pushing myself outside of my comfort zone and being confident in my abilities! 

Life’s Learning Moments

Photo of Kiran

Throughout my university career, I’ve always strived to become the best person I can be. That’s why I believed that entering the Schulich RISE competition would not only help me work towards this goal but also provide me with learning opportunities and a great experience. 

From Challenge to Championship

ANGELA SAF student

…What a wild ride!

The RISE competition is Schulich's multi-disciplinary case competition, in which delegates compete in a case simulation in a discipline of their choice and present it to industry professionals. The 5 disciplines that teams competed in were: Accounting, Corporate Social Responsibility, Entrepreneurship, Marketing, and Strategy. My team participated in the corporate social responsibility discipline.

Building a More Complete Business Mindset


When applying to jobs and taking part in interviews, I often get the question “Why Accounting?” My answer usually goes along the lines of “I believe it’s the language of business” as it provides us with the fundamental knowledge to understand any business.

How our awesome team pulled off AFOW this fall

AFOW Group picture

This year’s Accounting and Finance Orientation Week (AFOW) was the most difficult one we’ve hosted, but, with the combined effort from all of our 17 members, we successfully overcame many challenges.

Career Life Advice from Industry Professionals


The AFM 415: International Study Course to New York City, offered us the opportunity to interview professionals from a variety of industries ranging from accounting, finance, consulting and entrepreneurs.

Making a lasting impression

Tanvi SAF student

This year, one of my favorite segments of Co-op Ready was Nailing the Interview with Dinesh Balakrishnan. Not only did he have some amazing tips, but he made sure to keep the audience engaged throughout the segment. As a very informed professional, he provided us with great insights, as most of us work hard on our applications but rarely do we think ahead about the interview process.

Making a lasting impression during the interview is key!

Taking steps to a successful co-op work term

Nicole in front of university of waterloo building

Attending this workshop was helpful because I was able to analyze my character traits more in-depth and establish what my strengths are. Coming out of Steps to a Successful Co-op I feel that I have a better grasp on how I work best, what my strengths are, and how I can be successful in my co-op work term!

How COVID-19 has affected different industries


Throughout the meetings we had during the week of the AFM 415: International Study Course to New York City, I had the opportunity to interview professionals from a variety of industries ranging from accounting, finance, consulting and entrepreneurs.

Happy to win; happier to learn

Photo of Philbert Chan

The most important lesson I learned, however, was not that teamwork leads to winning, but that teamwork leads to progress. I am very happy to have won the competition but am even more ecstatic to have done so alongside my hard-working team members.

Unifying your passions through hard work and just the right amount of luck

Photo of Matthew

Often, I believe sports fans are too critical on their respective teams without truly understanding the logistics behind managing them. Which is why it was awesome to gain insight towards the challenges, struggles, and excitement of being part of managing such a major league sports team from  Assistant General Manager (GM) Don Fishman of the Washington Capitals. 

Co-op Ready brought me a step closer to getting a co-op job

Nishika, AFM student

With a co-op work term coming up, many of us are worried but also excited about the accompanying recruitment and application process. I know I speak for many people when I say this: Applying to your first co-op job can be daunting — but trust me, you’re not alone!

A great thing about the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) is how they are always there to support students.

Life Lessons of Empathy and Giving Back

SAF students from the Spring 2020 International Study Trip virtually met with alumni and dignitaries mostly from New York City. Although the course focused on NYC, SAF students were still able to expand their reach to meet with other alumni and dignitaries spanning from Hong Kong to California. I ended up virtually meeting with Kelvin Tran from NYC who offered me educational and informative knowledge that I will use to help grow my career.

How SAF Co-op Ready events helped me in my job search

Tyler S. SAF student

Hello, current and hopefully future UWaterloo students!

My name is Tyler S. and I’m a second year AFM student currently undergoing my first co-op job search and I want to tell you a little bit about it in this blog - because soon you’ll be doing the same thing.

Learning to adapt to unforeseeable circumstances

Photo of Kiera Cz

When I started my first co-op work term in January 2020, I imagined business casual outfits, to-go cup coffee, and cute School of Accounting and Finance stationary for our team meetings; and while I was able to fulfill most of these little daydreams, I never took into account it would be disrupted so swiftly by the COVID- 19 pandemic.

Summer co-op, WFH style

Jessica School of Accounting and Finance

Acclimating to a new virtual reality while working for the Boston Consulting Group

Here are my top five tips for excelling in a co-op job while working from home (WFH)!

Registration opens for Accounting and Finance Orientation Week (AFOW)

AFOW executive team

At the beginning of every fall term, the Accounting and Finance Orientation Week (AFOW) welcomes brilliant students from across the globe to the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF)! Our executive team members were all incredibly disappointed to find out that this year’s AFOW wouldn’t be taking place in person. However, we have revamped events and activities and have worked hard to make sure the incoming class of 2025 still has an unforgettable experience.

Registration for AFOW is now open!

Becoming a peer mentor was an eye-opening experience

Anshul S.

Through the Waterloo Ready program, I have been able to assist my mentees in preparing themselves for their first year at the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF). It has brought back a lot of memories and gave me the chance to reminisce as well.

My five helpful tips for working from home (WFH)

Matthew H

I’m going to be honest; I was a little nervous about working from home on my co-op term. As someone who had gotten used to getting dressed in business casual clothing and heading into an office, I had no idea what to expect.

Chasing my career goals while on co-op

Keidon G.

Hello, my name is Keidon, and I am an undergraduate student in the Recreation and Sport Business program at the University of Waterloo. I have been a co-op student at the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) for two terms now! Fall 2019 term, and spring 2020.

Adjusting to a virtual work environment

Alysha H

This summer I completed my first and only co-op term with the University of Waterloo’s School of Accounting and Finance. For this work term, I worked as the SAF’s communications & media associate. My co-op term, like most students this summer, was virtual and included many challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Why it's helpful to know your upper-year peers

Hi, I’m Lisa, a third-year AFM student. During my time at Waterloo, I’ve been very lucky to have plenty of personal, professional, and academic opportunities for learning and growth.

Study smarter in an online study environment

Re-printed with permission from LinkedIn

COVID-19 has dramatically changed how students will learn at university. Here are 3 tips on how to succeed and make the most of this new environment:

Helping the Class of 2025 with their transition to university

Jared C AFM


My name is Jared, and I am going into my second year in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program at Waterloo. This summer, I decided to be a peer mentor for the Waterloo Ready program. You may have taken part in it, but if you didn’t, Waterloo Ready is a new initiative by the university to help incoming students with their transition to university.

Welcoming new students to UWaterloo as a peer mentor

Gloria L

Hi, my name is Gloria and I just finished my 2B term as an Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) student at Waterloo. Now that I am at the half-way point in my undergraduate degree, it is a good time to reflect on a few of my experiences so far.

My remote working experience at Microsoft

Janagan R

Reposted from Medium with permission.

Similarly, to all businesses in the past several months, Microsoft also went through a transition phase because of COVID-19 (C-19). I was about three months into my internship as a Product Marketing Manager (PMM) for Microsoft when the transition to fully remote work started.

My experience as a peer mentor


Being a peer mentor over the last few weeks has been an enriching and rewarding experience. It felt incredible to be able to help kids who are in the same position I was exactly a year ago. Over the last few weeks, my students learned about university expectations, resources, and tips/tricks to doing well in AFM.

Young Tax Professionals - Student Experience

For as long as I can remember, just hearing the word “tax” makes many people anxious, frustrated and immediately want to change topics. It wasn’t until my experience with taking my first tax course and being part of the YTP that made me look at the monstrous Income Tax Act as an exciting opportunity.

Understanding the bigger picture: Debunking myths about the world of taxation


Hi, I’m Isabel, it’s nice to meet you! I’m a fourth-year student studying Biotechnology and Chartered Professional Accountancy. I value understanding the world around me and learning from people of different work/educational backgrounds, hence my choice in pursuing this program!

Logistics Team NYC 2020

Logistics team

Hello Fellow Students!

We are the logistics team reporting from our virtual International Study Trip course classroom. Our team, consisting of Cedric, Dawson, Matthew, and Michael, has been working extremely hard to make sure the organization of our virtual trip goes smoothly and seamlessly.

Adventures with the Corporate Relations Team

cr team

Hello Everyone!

            Coming to you from our virtual International Study Trip course classroom, we are the Corporate Relations Team: Owen, Roseline, Jack and Kaif. Today we will be sharing our insight into a behind the scenes experience for the International Study opportunity to NYC.

CFA Institute Research Challenge (IRC)

Mitchell H. at the CFA IRC competition

Reprinted from LinkedIn with permission

My Journey to the CFA Research Challenge Big Stage

Why pivoting during covid-19 is important for businesses

Iris G, AFM student

We proactively responded to the COVID-19 crisis by pivoting and seeking global opportunities, which was a huge success with so many organizations from diverse industries agreeing to meet with our International Study group.

Meeting and interviewing industry professionals


After meeting Minghao Ji, from Bain & Company, at the UWMCC competition, I asked him if he would like to be a speaker at our class during a virtual coffee chat. Not only did he agree, but he also brought a private equity partner, Andrew Edwards, and a Waterloo alumnus, Cameron Capel, to help maximize our learning experience. This opportunity became a truly amazing interview.

We’re Young, We’re in Tax, and We’re Professionals

Deborah SAF student

Isolated cubicles and endless hours of routine number crunching – that’s the impression many people have of what working in tax entails. Through the Young Tax Professionals program, I learned how the profession continues to evolve with emerging technology and changing laws. What became crystal clear to me was that the opportunities in tax are truly endless and are not one-size-fits-all.

Learning from John Nicola, CEO of Nicola Wealth

Anna S. SAF Student

I had the opportunity to lead our meeting with John Nicola, the Founder, Chairman & CEO of Nicola Wealth. With a background like no other, I found his insights, as well as the delivery of those insights to be extremely unique.

International study course prepares for virtual trip

mc pic

Coming to you from our virtual International Study Trip course classroom, we are the Marketing & culture team: Abirna, Jennie, Katie, and Rebecca. Today, we want to share with you - our behind the scene experience of planning our International Study Opportunity to New York City.

Preparing for the global stage

Isaac Wong

Isaac, a 4th year AFM student met with SAF to talk about his experience with this program and how it prepared him for the recent CFA Institute Research Challenge (IRC). "Every student coming into SAF had heard about the 2016 team’s win on the CFA IRC international stage with Canadian Tire. As a result, I was always keen to represent Waterloo on a larger stage and knew this was a great opportunity."

The road to regionals

Mitchell, 4th year AFM

Mitchell, a 4th year AFM student met with SAF to talk about his experience with this program and how it prepared him for the recent CFA Institute Research Challenge (IRC). "It was the hard work and commitment that our team put in which ultimately made the difference. Our team members during that time were either on co-op or exchange and so it took a lot of planning and dedication for us all to stay connected."

Marrying a passion for teaching with a passion for finance


Shortly after graduating from the University of Waterloo, I began my full-time career in the investment banking group at TD Securities. I obtained this opportunity thanks to the University of Waterloo’s fantastic co-op program

Learning about the port operating industry from the CEO of PSA Halifax

Gabriel Yeung

As part of our International Study Trip we were lucky to have a meeting with Kelvin Tan, Deputy CEO of PSA Halifax who has over 18 years’ experience working in the logistics industry.

What it was like working for the Ontario Public Service (OPS) during the pandemic

Vaishaaly, AFM

Putting the knowledge I obtained from SAF to the test 

I spent my last co-op work term as a business finance co-op student at the Ontario Public Service, more specifically, the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. I didn’t work directly with Premier Doug Ford, but I did receive a few emails from him!

Learning to adapt to unpredictable environments


From office to home, the new working reality amid COVID-19

To prospective UWaterloo students, I would like to share a recap of my Winter 2020 co-op experience as one that was very unexpected, yet valuable. The skills I developed as a student in the AFM program prepared me for the new working reality during my first work term.

Managing the new normal: Working from home (WFH)

woman taking notes

Like many of us, Miljana Prelic, Performance Measurement Analyst at SAF is learning to adjust to the new remote workplace. A big difference for Miljana is that she has a new co-worker, Oliver, her toddler at home. We wanted to catch up and find out how she is managing the new normal and if she has any insights to share.

Gaining insight into business trends and operations around the globe

Yash Heda

Due to complications arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, the plan for the winter 2020 International Study Course shifted several times. I was a member of the meals and culture team, and our team was responsible for creating a presentation for the class to learn more about our original destination, Singapore. This included its history, cultural diversity, government structure, etiquette, laws, and points of interest. This allowed all our classmates to be knowledgeable about what they were to expect from the trip, and how they should be interacting with the speakers in our meetings.

Beyond the classroom


As a co-op student at the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), “the new normal” was a phrase that I and many others were not expecting to experience during our work terms.

Becoming bilingual in French and tax on my co-op term

Murtaza Zaidi

Bonjour! Si vous parlez français, pouvez-vous faire ma déclaration de revenus?

To be honest, I wouldn’t have been able to understand half that sentence either if it weren’t for my co-op experience at Deloitte as a tax analyst…yes, a tax analyst.

Only a video call away

Jillian, PhD Accounting

Presenting research virtually, taking online classes, and staying connected to SAF faculty – a student’s account of the last few weeks in the PhD Accounting program.

"With a month left to go in the winter term of my first year in the PhD Accounting program, we were told to pack up our offices and prepare to not be back on campus for a while… little did I know that I was about to experience one of the most challenging yet reflective times of my life."

My co-op job as a forensic accountant during COVID-19

Dhanusha Sathiyaseelan

When I was debating between two co-op job offers, one as a forensic accountant at a public accounting firm, and the other as a financial analyst at a software company, I met an industry professional at a networking event and had a great conversation with him that helped me decide.

From the office to home, a new working reality

 Aravinth K

We’ve all heard on many occasions that co-op work terms are a great representation of the real world. It gives students a perspective on how our lives will be after we graduate.

A letter to our past selves in high school

Richard, Johnson, Khanh, Fangyu, Ryan and Lynn, AFM

We know you must be very nervous coming into university. It’s a challenging transition — but don’t worry, because you’ll meet awesome classmates and friends from your Crew.

SAF Crews: A bond that motivates and pushes us to do better

Serena, Sukhbirl, Amy, Jake, Jeyanth and Haneen, AFM

The bond we built allowed us to motivate and push each other to be better. We want you guys to know that even the smallest get togethers or moments with your Crew can make a big difference when it matters.

What I wish I knew in high school about first year and SAF Crews

Tyler Street, Shyam Bhatt, Davin Ching, Thomas Kraemer, Suki Su, Cassandra Wan

Dear high school students, you might be scared of the prospect of university, so here are five lessons we learned that we wish we knew back when we were in your shoes.

Learning how to cohesively work together in our SAF Crew

Jane L., Srija M., Jia., Ayden S., Harry S. and Danial Z.

Working in Crews has taught us so much, ranging from learning how to cohesively work together as one, to finding all the best places for Shawarma in town. On a more serious note, teamwork is one of the best attributes of the Crew system in the School of Accounting and Finance.

SAF students invest in their teamwork skills

Umair, Livia, Jason, Harrison and Jialu, AFM

We know that a lot of people might think, ‘it’s easier to work on my own’ or ‘other people are unreliable.’ Contrary to those beliefs, the people in your team are your greatest assets. When we were accepted into the Accounting and Financial Management program at the University of Waterloo, to be honest, we were afraid of not knowing anyone in our classes—but then we were introduced to our SAF Crew.

During your first year in SAF, teamwork is everything

Isha, Rissalie, Karanbir and Nicole, AFM

Your Crew is essentially your team for first-year. There’s four to six of you, and you get to share plenty of classes and other team-building experiences with one another. Working in Crews has made us comfortable sharing our ideas and opinions more openly, and it has made us more responsible. When you know someone is counting on you, you’re much more likely to put your best foot forward. Our Crew also keep us accountable.

A built-in support system from the start

Sabrina, Jerry, Mohamed, Yammunna, Rajvi and Adam, AFM

Making the transition from high school to university can be daunting. All six of us had common fears like ‘am I going to be able to find friends?’, ‘will I be able to succeed in a new setting’?

Why SAF Crews are important for intrapersonal and interpersonal growth

Nirthika, Claire, Dimple, Jay, Erielle and Edwin, SAF

In our first year, SAF placed us into small groups (four to six students) referred to as Crews which acts as a support system, providing each other with support regarding academics and personal growth. What are the dynamics of our Crew you ask?

The Most Important Lessons I Learned in My First Year of University

UW entrance sign picture with Ryan's photo beside

During my COVID-19 home quarantine I have had some time to reflect on my first year of university. Below are the three most important things that I learned:

From SAF to the CFE, Helpful Tips by Tina Jin

Tina Jin

Ever since being named to the Common Final Examination (CFE) Honour Roll, I have this new-found confidence in my career path. Although I still have a long process of figuring out exactly what my long-term career goals are, this reassured me that I can succeed in whichever path I choose to pursue, as long as I put in the effort.

Being the Best I Can Be

Daniel Mahne School of Accounting and Finance

My aspiration in life is, and always has been, to be the best practitioner I can. With the experiences I’ve gained from the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) and making the Honour Roll for the Common Final Examination (CFE), I feel like I’m well on my way.

Thinking of taking the CFE in the future? Become a SAF graduate!

Nishi Shah School of Accounting and Finance

I always try to give 110% in everything I do and push myself to complete the best work I am capable of. This approach was no different when preparing for the Common Final Examination (CFE). While I gave 110% when studying for the CFE, I never thought I would make the honour roll. Much to my surprise though, I actually did! Though I probably wouldn’t have been able to do it without the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF).

Sitting down with Andrew Giles

Andrew Giles School of Accounting and Finance

In September 2019, over 6,000 candidates passed the Common Final Examination (CFE), moving them towards their profession as a chartered professional accountant.

One Night with CFE’s One Percent

CFE Honour Roll recipients

On February 20th 2020, the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) faculty, staff, alumni, and members of CPA Ontario gathered in downtown Toronto to celebrate the successes of SAF graduates in their Common Final Examinations (CFE) to become a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA). The National Cub on Bay Street graciously held the event for us in their front room, which immediately made me forget that we were in the middle of Toronto and not a century old English manor house.

The Big Beautiful World of Tax

Fei Teng School of Accounting and Finance

To put it simply, I love tax.

I initially got into tax because of my courses at the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF). I found that the professors that taught had an immense amount of experience and credibility straight from the industry.

Having a chat with Ram Subbiah

Ram Subbiah School of Accounting and Finance

In September 2019, over 6,000 candidates passed the Common Final Examination (CFE), moving them towards their profession as a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA).

Passion, Professions and the CFE

Bill Lin School of Accounting and Finance

I have always had a creative streak in my life. I love sewing, music, the arts— and I even used to be a piano teacher. However, I also love accounting and finance.

The Importance of Experiential Learning

Hanning Cai School of Accounting and Finance

It’s no secret that the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) is one of the best of its kind in the country. The Accounting and Financial Management program (AFM) and the Master’s of Accounting programs offer so many courses in accounting, tax, financial management, and more.

Samantha Kan on the CFE and SAF

Samantha Kan School of Accounting and Finance

In September 2019, over 6,000 candidates passed the Common Final Examination (CFE), moving them towards their profession as a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA).

Christopher Houng’s SAF Experience

Christopher Houng School of Accounting and Finance

In September 2019, over 6,000 candidates passed the Common Final Examination (CFE), moving them towards their profession as a chartered professional accountant (CPA).

The Endless Possibilities

Aiwei (Ivy) Sun

Every university student’s most dreaded question is probably: What do you plan to do after you get your degree? Some of you may already know, which is great! But if you’re like me and still have no idea, that’s fine too! Even after being named to the Common Final Examination (CFE) Honour Roll, I am still not 100% sure what my professional career is going to look like.

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: Competing at the IBM Technology Consulting Competition

The IBM Technology Consulting Competition was a perfect example of how being in SAF allowed me to explore an exciting and unique experience. The competition is the largest tech-focused and student-run case competition in Canada, and in the past, over 400 participants from schools across North America competed.

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: Differentiating ourselves at the IBM Technology Consulting Competition

Back in my first-year, I shied away from case competitions because I wasn’t confident thinking on my feet—but as one of my mentors advised me, competitions are a great way to learn about a new business field and get out of my comfort zone. As you gain more experience from your co-op terms and courses, you are already prepped with all the technical knowledge you need to succeed.

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: Combining two of my passions at the IBM Technology Consulting Competition

For those who are interested in business strategy and technology, the IBM Technology Consulting Competition is second to none. I had the opportunity to combine two of my passions and develop a creative solution all while meeting industry leaders and like-minded individuals.

From challenge to championship—what a wild ride!

I strongly suggest you take part in any competition like the CFA Ethics Competition. I feel I was able to learn more about CFA Ethics in this competitive environment, than I would have through a course or project. I learned how ethics can be implemented in all types of situations—even in my daily life.

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: Applying knowledge to real-life scenarios at the IBM Tech Consulting Competition

Centered around IBM’s technology, our task was to determine the best course of action for a medium-sized bank looking to expand its operations nationally. With four hours to pull the deliverables together, we as a team were able to identify and play to the strengths of each individual. Our team was able to leverage a diverse set of backgrounds, as we’ve all completed a variety of co-op placements including private equity, accounting, management consulting and tech.

My advice on networking and standing out to co-op employers

It can be a daunting task to go up and talk to strangers. In the field of Accounting and Finance we are put in situations where we are constantly talking to employers and building our network. In my opinion I enjoy networking because I see it as an opportunity to meet friends and create relationships. My advice for networking is be to try and be unique and have a normal conversation.

Stepping out of my comfort zone

In order to be ready to take on new challenges and opportunities I must develop myself as a professional. This means stepping out of my comfort zone, building and maintaining a strong support system and sharpening my technical and durable skills. Stepping out of my comfort zone began when I was deciding which university to attend.

How revisiting DECA changed my perspective

I recently had the opportunity to return to DECA, however this time I wasn’t the nervous young girl scanning over performance indicators and stressing about Porter’s five forces – this time, I was on other side.

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: Sharing experiences to shape the future

Sometimes making our career defining moments can be difficult. As undergrads and aspiring students, it is important to take some time and really savour the moments you share.

A letter to my past self

Dear Khanh of 2018,

This is your future self – Khanh of 2020. I’m writing this letter to let you know about an interesting concept introduced at DECA Leadership Development Academy today. It has really opened up new perspectives for me and I believe for you as well.

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: My full circle journey

I still remember the days back in high school where I would put countless hours into preparing for DECA Provincials with my case partner, a business competition that most high schoolers dream of winning.

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: A letter to my best friend

Hey Rachel!

Just wanted to check in since it’s been a while. How are you? How’s Cali? I hope you’re soaking up enough sun for both of us.

Do you remember DECA in high school? Well, guess who went back to provincials!!

BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: An opportunity to be better

Dear Grade 11 Anthony,

This is your future-self sending you an email (yes unfortunately we still use email in the future) in order to help guide you in the upcoming few months. SPOILERS AHEAD!

Transitioning from high school to university as a CFM student

In high school, I was always really attracted to computer science and finance, and I have always wanted the opportunity to develop my own programs, applications, and games. Hence why I decided to join the Computing and Financial Management (CFM) program at University of Waterloo. Since transitioning from high school to university, I have definitely learnt some valuable lessons:

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