January 2021

Placing Third at a National Stock-Pitch Competition

Group photo of ACIIC team

Reaching top three and learning from others along the way

Tips for High School Students Who Are Participating in the Financial Literacy Competition


Challenge your financial literacy skills this winter

Meet Janagan R.| Business Owner & Full-Time AFM Student


This fourth-year University of Waterloo student has a passion for helping brands scale.

Work-life balance is no easy feat. Throw a full course load and a thriving business into the mix, and the equation gets even more complicated.

A Sweet and Sustainable Victory

strive team pic

Hello UWaterloo Community!

We are Evelyn (bottom left), Joanne (top left), Philbert (bottom right), and Ceanna (top right), and we competed in the STRIVE National Case Competition in the upper-year student level and we emerged with a first place win!

The importance of time management in your university life

Jolie, AFM student

Time management is crucial in achieving a work-life balance!

Why I decided to pursue a PhD in Accounting at UWaterloo

Jonathan Y., PhD in Accounting student

The key is to know what the right fit is for you

Waterloo Ready - Beyond the summer and into first year

picture of Mr Luka

It's pretty clear what we in the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) Outreach & Ambassador Program (SOAP) and all of the SAF mentors would recommend to incoming students: get involved with the School’s activities!

Adjusting to university life through Waterloo Ready

picture of Sisi

Navigating the nline learning environment with help from upper-year students

Using school resources to prepare for university

picture of Ms Rida

Starting university off on the right foot, with help from upper-year students and exposure to tips and resources.

What I would tell my first-year self

Author - Mehek B.

You can’t expect to know things until you’ve experienced them.

Feeling welcomed to UWaterloo as a new student

Mischa H., 1A, AFM student

Transitioning from high school to university on the right foot with Waterloo Ready.

What I would tell my first-year self

picture of Alexandra S., 2A, AFM

Hi, I’m Alex, and I’m a current 2A Accounting and Financial (AFM) student! A little background about myself, I love plants, reading, and am an avid coffee drinker. There are many lessons I wish I could have told my first-year self, but here’s my chance to share what I’d consider the most important one: Celebrate the wins!

Advice I would give to my first-year self

picture of Jared C., 2B, AFM

Entering university can be both exciting and intimidating but you certainly don’t have to struggle on your own.

What I would tell my first-year self

picture of Darshan S., 4A, AFM

Learn what you are studying and learn how to study.

Interview with Dr. Mozaffar Khan inspires me to pursue a career in sustainability

Neha L., AFM student

A sustainability-themed conversation with Dr. Mozaffar Khan, Director of ESG Research and Quantitative Senior Research Analyst at Causeway Capital.

Interview with David Namdar, CEO, Entrepreneur, and Crypto Investor

a picture of Jia Lei Lin

An intriguing conversation with David Namdar, Co-Founder of NFT.com and General Partner at Coral DeFi.

Interview with Marissa Poole

Evelyn K.

An insightful conversation with Marissa Poole, the US General Manager at Sanofi Genzyme.

An interview with John Neppl

Jeffrey Q.

What the CFO of Bunge Ltd., an industry leader in agribusiness, has to say.

Co-Chair of the Accounting & Finance Orientation Week (AFOW) Committee reflects on this year’s impact

Darshan S., AFM

What it was like being a part of a collaborative committee that helped 350 first-year students transition to university this fall.

5 Tips I Would Give My First-Year Self

an image of three students sitting undera tree and chatting

I just entered my fourth year here at the University of Waterloo, and it’s got me reflecting on my time as a first-year student. I’ve learned a ton about being a university student over the past few years, and I wish I could go back to my seventeen-year-old self and give him so much advice.

Tips and Advice for Prospective University Students

A photo of students on campus in fall term

A current UWaterloo student offers tips for finishing high school strong and getting ready for university

 Hi! I’m Matt, and I have just entered my fourth year of the Honours Arts and Business program here at the University of Waterloo. I have worked at the School of Accounting and Finance in previous co-op terms, and have recently returned as a part-time employee. I wanted to take this opportunity to offer some tips for surviving the university application process.

Choosing the Right University Program for You

Pathway within UWaterloo campus during fall season

With so many choices, how do you know which program is the right one?

Hi! My name is Matthew, and I’m an upper-year student in the Honours Arts and Business program at the University of Waterloo. I have worked in the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) as the Marketing and Recruitment Associate in my previous co-op work terms and have recently returned as a part-time employee. I recently wrote a blog that provided some tips about applying to university, but I wanted to expand on that and talk about how you can choose the right university and program for you. 

Three things I wish I knew as a first-year student

Ryan Trainor

As a third-year student, here are three things I wish I knew during my first year.

Making the Best Out of the Pandemic

Anika, Isabel and Arushi

The upside was that I could compete in competitions that are now virtual and make meaningful connections with other students

At the start of the global pandemic, I pictured months filled with monotony and boredom, since the most enjoyable part of being in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program was missing – connections in person with other people. Fortunately, the reality was very far from my pessimistic expectation.

Get To Know: David Ha (MAcc ’09), Professor and MAcc Co-Director

David Ha, holding Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award

With the start of the fall term, our community is getting ready to return to campus, and so it is a great time to be introduced (or re-introduced) to some of our faculty and staff. Candid, enlightening, serious, and not-so-serious, our Q&A series allows the personalities of the faculty and staff members who make up the School of Accounting and Finance community to shine.

From Challenge to Championship…What a Wild Ride!

Image of Amanda, Fatima, and Kelvin

Getting a look at a career in taxation by competing in the Young Tax Professionals Case Competition.

Looking at tax through a new perspective

Abirna G., AFM student

Lessons gained from competing in the YTP Case Competition

Hello SAF community!

My name is Abirna, and I am an undergraduate student who has recently completed her third year in Accounting and Financial Management (AFM), and even more recently joined the Young Tax Professionals program (YTP for short).

When people hear I am learning tax in school they often get confused. People assume that tax is just inputting numbers into a form and that it is easy as that. However, the taxation field is so much more and is integral to our daily lives. 

Get To Know: Tracy Hilpert, Lecturer

Tracy Hilpert and partner with dogs

With the fall term coming up, our community is getting ready to return to campus, and so it is a great time to be introduced (or re-introduced) to some of our faculty and staff! Candid, enlightening, serious, and not-so-serious, our Q&A series allows the personalities of the faculty and staff members who make up the SAF community to shine.

First up! Tracy Hilpert, Lecturer of Managerial Accounting.

What hobby have you picked up while working remotely?

The Four T’s of Business Evaluation

Photo of Zaineb

What are the important aspects to keep in mind when making an investment decision?

During my time on the Student Venture Fund (SVF), I learned tons about entrepreneurship, technology, and finance. With guidance from industry experts and faculty members in finance, the SVF is a great program where students can get hands-on training in venture capital investing. Organized into transaction teams of three to four associates and analysts, we get a chance to prepare for a career in venture capital investing through activities including reviewing potential investments, conducting due diligence, and more!

Shaping a sustainable future with Waterloo

Photo of windmills and field

Climate change is accelerating, and the world is in need of leaders to make a significant impact in the present and future. Businesses around the world are incorporating environmental and sustainable factors in their strategic plans.

As the world moves into a new norm, the only certainty is tax

Photo of Helena

Hi fellow School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) students!

I’m Helena, a Master of Accounting (MAcc) student who joined the Young Tax Professionals (YTP) program not long ago. You may be wondering, “What is a MAcc student doing in the YTP program and not preparing for the CPA Common Final Examination (CFE)?” I am here to share my experience to help you gain some insight into the YTP program and the taxation field.

Behind the Scenes: Organizing a Virtual International Study Trip Course

Photo of Jeffrey, Khushboo, and Soham

Our team members are made up of Jeffrey, Khushboo, and Soham. We are looking forward to sharing our insights and letting you in on what goes into coordinating a virtual international study trip course. Throughout the term, we, the Logistics team, have been dedicated to ensuring our class meetings and future interview meetings run optimally. Through proper planning, organizing, and being adaptable, we make it logistically feasible for the class to be able to meet diverse industry executives from around the world.

The Value of a Quality Sleep – Our IRC 2021 Experience

3rd place

The Importance of Collaboration and Curiosity.

The Importance of a Supportive Team Environment

Photo of Chantel, Lynn, Harry and Ryan

Participating in the 2021 School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) Investment Research Challenge (IRC) was an experience that broadened our business acumen and challenged us to think critically while collaborating under difficult conditions. Our team covered the Canadian Sugar industry, which allowed us to explore a new industry and expanded our understanding of macroeconomic factors and the dynamics that impact different types of businesses.

The Road to Success Is Paved by Failure

Chart illustrating how to achieve success through failure

As students, we constantly face challenges that compel us to adapt and innovate to succeed. Challenges come in many forms, whether they be exams, group projects, or just living on your own for the first time.

Our 2021 SAF Investment Research Challenge experience

Photo of Ali, Puneet, Brian and Jared

During our 2B and 3B terms in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program, we decided to participate in the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) Investment Research Challenge (IRC). We saw a great opportunity in this challenge to apply the knowledge that we gained in both our courses as well as our involvement in the Student Investment Fund.

Navigating Professional Connections Beyond the Classroom

Photo of the Corporate Relations team

Our team includes Johnson, Yahya, Evelyn, Mehek, and Waleed. We are excited to share our experiences on what happens behind the scenes when a group of bold, inquisitive, and ambitious students seek to reach out to notable executives from companies around the world. In general, our team’s main goal is to ensure that students on the virtual trip meet professionals from diverse industries to gain insights and learn from their experiences.

The Last Dance – SAF Strategy Case Competition

cascade consulting

Stories, Strategy and Compatibility!

No Challenge Is Too Ambitious

Group photo of the Chensulting team

“No challenge is too ambitious, so we believe that Peloton’s user goal of 100 million users is attainable.”

As a second-year team entering the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) Strategy Case Competition, our team’s main goals were to exercise our consulting skills and learn from the unique experiences each member brought to the team. As competition day neared, our team was most excited to witness a plethora of top-tier presentations from our upper-year mentors. Never could we have guessed that we would be amongst the teams on the podium!

Travelling and exploring Canada while on co-op

Shan T.,

Back in 2016 when I started my bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Financial Management (AFM), I was eager to explore Canada. I felt that my program’s co-op work terms would provide the best opportunity to fulfill this dream. I remember in 2018, I applied to all small cities and secluded spots for my first co-op work term. Although it was scary at first, the idea of exploring new places has always fascinated me. 

From challenge to experience…lessons learned

PPG Consulting

Lessons gained from competing at the SAF Strategy Case Competition

Over the past month, the three of us that make up PPG Consulting, have had a blast working on our presentation for the SAF Strategy Case Competition. From the first moment we heard about the competition, we knew we had to put our skills to the test.

The Journey Is More Important than the End Outcome

Katie M., Rebecca L., Danielle L., Evelyn K., AFM students

The SAF Strategy Case Competition allowed our team’s friendship to foster and grow in unimaginable ways, even while in an online setting. From meeting in SAF’s CPA Student Lounge on campus in our first year to working until the early mornings on group projects to working virtually on our case competition together — our friendship has blossomed exponentially.

Cultivating memorable international experiences

Photo of Marketing and Culture team

On our stellar team of enthusiastic and creative individuals we have Jia Lei, Neha, Samanvitha, and Stefania! Our roles in the M&C team are to create the best possible experiences for our fellow travellers by cultivating opportunities to build connections, all while showing off the amazing work being done throughout the term.

Taking initiative during a virtual conference


I recently had the opportunity to attend the DECA Leadership Development Academy (LDA) Conference, which is an interactive virtual event where students are brought together to learn from real leaders themselves. This was a worthwhile experience that helped me grow and explore career paths that I never thought I would be able to pursue.

Virtual Learning Made Fun!


Going into the DECA Leadership Development Academy (LDA) Conference in my first year with DECA, I didn’t know what to expect. With the shift to online learning, I am going to be honest; I didn’t expect anything more than another Zoom meeting, which because of the pandemic, I've gotten very used to and tired of. But I was so surprised by the wealth of information that I was able to gather from all the presenters.

From Solving Puzzles to Viewing Different Career Pathways

Photo of Purnata

The DECA Leadership Development Academy (LDA) was an amazing experience where I was put on a path to increase my knowledge about what it means to be a leader while being able to communicate to my peers and make new friends.

DECA LDA: Strengthening Leaders of the Future

Photo of Mayumi

As someone with a curious personality, I’ve always wanted to experience what it would be like to enhance my knowledge in leadership and business with others who think alike. I can assure you that the DECA Leadership Development Academy (LDA) Conference gave me the perfect opportunity to do so.

How to achieve success, through hard times!

picture of Mr Lochan

DECA LDA inspired me to believe in myself

Hello everyone, my name is Lochan and my blog is about the DECA LDA conference run by the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF). Firstly, I would like to give a big thanks to DECA for accepting me into this program with open arms.

I would like to start by explaining the events that led me to the LDA.

Impact, Influence, and Inspiration!

Photo of Inayat

Hi everyone! My name is Inayat, and as a first-year DECA student at North Park Secondary School, I decided to take part in the DECA LDA Conference earlier this year! This conference was one of the best opportunities I’ve ever taken part in, as I was able to learn so much about not only leadership, but business in general.

My learning experience at DECA LDA

Picture of Mr Brandon

“While I am stuck in isolation,

Keeping my distance and staying away,

Two things brightened my pandemic stay:

One was my XBOX Madden NFL gameplay and the other,

The fantastic learning through DECA!!”

One Team One Dream – CFA Ethics Challenge

team pic

The importance of teamwork in a virtual setting

The CFA Society Ethics Challenge was a commitment over the course of several months, starting in late 2020 and carrying on into May 2021. The various rounds involved preparing for case studies, writing reports, creating presentations, and ensuring we were performing to the best of our abilities in order to succeed.

How the hEDGE Conference elevated women’s voices


hEDGE inspired me to believe in myself.

Finishing first in the Achieve Case Competition

team pic

Today’s accounting and finance professionals face many adverse challenges, now more than ever. Attending and competing in the 2021 Achieve Case Competition while representing the University of Waterloo and the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) was not only a great learning experience but also a time to showcase courage in redefining the future and overcoming challenges. 

A three-year long journey of leadership development, character building, and self-growth

Photo of Jennie

I admit I am a little sad to be signing off from the hEDGE Financial Services Conference executive team. These past three years I’ve spent organizing the conference have been one of the most rewarding yet challenging experiences. However, I would not have had it any other way. The hEDGE experience has forever transformed the way I think, lead, and work within a team — and it was definitely for the better. There were three key lessons I picked up over the years that I know will accompany me for the rest of my career.

How We Made it to the Global Finals

team pic

After five rounds of elimination, our CFA Institute Research Challenge (IRC) team moved on to the Global Finals, making us the only 3-person team and the third Canadian team in history to make it to the top 5 worldwide.

First-Time Challengers at the Global Finals – An Exhilarating Experience

Photo of Yigga

The Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC) at the regional level was an exhilarating experience. Now a month later, we were doing it all over again — on a global stage. In retrospect, I want to talk about a funny phenomenon at the competition. You’ll often hear about the “power of three” in fairy tales, and I like to think that we were riding on some powerful “three” tailwinds as we pursued a “top three” placement. To begin with, we organized three advisory meetings, aligned with three faculty advisors, and did due diligence on three start-ups over three days of competition.

Competing in a U.S.-style Venture Capital

image of Mr Tony

After winning first place in the Canadian division of the Venture Capital Investing Competition (VCIC), our team was fortunate enough to participate and move on to the global finals.

The Great Ad-Venture: VCIC Global Finals

picture of Ms Megan

After winning the Canadian finals of the Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC) back in March of 2021, my team and I were very excited to move onto the global finals in April. It was definitely a very fun and unique competition!

My Unique Co-op Experience at Elections Canada

Photo of Obafemi

Exploring my interests and preparing for a VUCA World

During the Winter 2021 co-op term, I worked at Elections Canada (EC) as a data scientist on the Enterprise Architecture (EA) team. This position was my first experience in both the data science field and the federal government public administration industry.

Fast Pace to the Case, a new challenge!


Through the School of Accounting and Finance’s External Subsidy Program, my teammates and I were selected to compete in the Fast Pace to the Case Competition. This was an Ontario-wide accounting case competition that put our case writing and teamwork skills to the test.

Taking every opportunity to learn

Photo of Aliana

Amid a global pandemic, virtual competitions have gathered inspiration from our current circumstances. The A4S International Case Competition (A4SICC) challenged us as students to develop a sustainable solution that addressed supply chain resiliency, which is a critical issue impacted by COVID-19. That’s a big ask!

Our introduction to the exciting world of mergers and acquisitions (M&A)

Photo of Gursimran, Julia and Murtaza

The case competition was on March 11, 2021, and we had around one week to read the case, review the details, create a slide deck, and create a presentation where we assumed the role of investment bankers aiding in a potential acquisition bid. The case was based on a real acquisition that took place in the late 2000s, which added to the realism of the case.

The CFA IRC is a marathon, not a sprint

picture of Mr Noah Yabrov

For most of us, when we ask ourselves why we went to university, the overarching answer is to best prepare for the real world. To do so, we must all experience personal and professional development. During my time at the University of Waterloo, I have found that while school, extra-curricular activities, and co-op experience are all critical components to one’s learning, competitions cannot be overlooked.

A VC simulation like no other

picture of Mr Sean Mark

Throughout my university experience, I was exposed to a variety of learning environments from the classroom to co-op to the Student Venture Fund. In all these environments, I learned from my professors, faculty members, managers, and industry experts. At the Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC), I was given the opportunity to learn by leading.

Waterloo Wins Canadian Finals in Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC) for Second Year in a Row and Advances to International Finals

team headshots

On March 5th, 2021, for the second year in a row, students from the University of Waterloo Student Venture Fund (SVF) captured the 2021 Undergraduate Canada Regional Finals Championship for the Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC). The University of Waterloo claimed the title over the University of Alberta (2nd) and Acadia University (3rd) and has advanced to the International Finals being held on April 10.

Being proactive in co-op

Photo of Shashwat

Hi, I’m Shashwat, a School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) student and I was on my first co-op term during Winter 2021. Boy was it a weird time to be working! I was working as a Financial Analyst at a Data Analytics company and some of my responsibilities included developing financial performance projections and preparing the financial statements for year-end.

The road to success is always under construction

Photo of Abhishek

What started out as a volunteer experience in 2017, has ended up becoming one of my most memorable co-op terms. The idea of providing basic life necessities to those in need has always been something I’ve supported in some shape or form. Thankfully, my co-op term with Habitat for Humanity (HFH) Canada has allowed me to get one step closer to achieving this goal.

Challenging Each Other and Competing Together at VCIC

Photo of Yigga

Going into the undergraduate Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC), I was nervous. What if I wasn’t prepared enough? I mean, I was working in venture capital, was that enough? And then there was our team — I wanted us to work well.

The VCIC Reinforced My Passion for Investing


Lessons gained from competing on a national stage

Having participated in numerous entrepreneurship programs before university, the dynamics surrounding growing companies have always fascinated me. After getting involved with the University of Waterloo’s Student Venture Fund (SVF) during my second year in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program, I combined my background in operations with a newly found interest: early-stage investing.

Venture Capital Learning on Hyper-drive

Photo of Brendan

Before participating in the Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC), I had very limited knowledge, if any, about venture capital. I was surprised at the responsibility to represent the University of Waterloo’s School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) in our graduate team, but I jumped at the opportunity, nonetheless.

Venturing out to win first place at VCIC

an image of Mr Tony

Experiences from an unusual Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC)

Earlier this month, I was fortunate enough to participate in the Canadian Venture Capital Investment Competition as part of the University of Waterloo’s undergraduate team. While the event is usually held in Halifax, Nova Scotia, it was moved to a virtual setting because of the global pandemic. This presented a new set of challenges for us to face and overcome.

The Great Ad-Venture

picture of Ms Megan

On Friday, March 5th, I had the opportunity to participate in the Canadian Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC). With hard work and preparation, my team was able to place first overall! This competition was an enjoyable experience where I was able to gain insights into the venture capital space as my team attended pitches, led due diligence sessions, and pitched a deal.

A Day as a Venture Capitalist

Photo of Julee

It had been four years since I last competed in a case competition, so naturally, I was hesitant when I was invited to join the School of Accounting and Finance’s (SAF) graduate team for the Venture Capital Investment Competition (VCIC). During the competition, we played the role of Venture Capitalists for a day, assessed start-ups, and presented and delivered an investment strategy in front of a panel of judges.

Inspiring student initiative shaping the future of women’s participation in the finance industry

Women in Finance executive team

Striving to bridge the gender gap within the finance industry through an engaging conference

Hi everyone! I’m a 1B student in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program and I knew when I first started university that I wanted to get involved with an initiative that I was passionate about and made a real impact. After attending a lunch and learn event hosted by the UWaterloo Women in Finance (WIF) initiative, I realized I had found my match!

A Competition Like No Other

picture of Ms Anna

Participating in this competition was an opportunity to represent the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) and the University of Waterloo on a global stage, learn from the best, and become an expert on one special company. While we faced our fair share of ups and downs, there were a few aspects that were key to our success.

I.C.B.C - A journey to remember...

Photo of Anna, Kyle and Sabrina

Anna, Kyle, and Sabrina met in their first year of university as Associates in the ACE Consulting Group. Their collaboration started three years ago working on delivering consulting engagements to start-up clients, and later on leading the ACE team. The three of them worked well together, had a passion for strategy, and enjoyed the thrill of case competitions. After a successful run at the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) Strategy Case Competition, they decided to collaborate again at the International Collegiate Business Competition (I.C.B.C.) hosted by Queen’s University. 

A social venture to educate and empower young women, First Letter International


Since a young age, my parents instilled in me and my siblings the importance of giving back to our communities to create a positive impact in whatever way possible. From a young age, I remember joining my brother and father in various random acts of kindness by offering food to the homeless in underprivileged neighbourhoods in Pakistan. These acts of kindness remained important to us as we all grew older and busier with our lives.

Balancing school, co-op and a virtual case competition

Photo of Shubhankar

The competition day was super quick – we delivered a 10-minute presentation which was followed by a 10-minute Q&A period. A lot of preparation culminated in only 20 minutes of time! Personally, this was the first time I participated in a completely virtual competition and as a result, I had to adjust to working remotely.

How the Fellowship Program has broadened my perspective


In my first term, it has already given me many opportunities to meet industry professionals and attend a variety of workshops and events.

A Virtual Fellowship Program

image of the campus

Once I attended UW, I was then offered the opportunity to join the Fellowship program. At first, I didn’t know what to expect, but today I can proudly say I have not regretted signing up for the program once.

How the Fellowship Program has empowered me to give back

an image of Valerie N

The Fellowship program is amazing in that it provides you with the ability to connect with like-minded individuals who are both friendly and supportive.

An inside look at being a SAF student within the UWaterloo community


Advice for grade 12 students who are nervous about starting university.

First place at the CFA Institute Research Challenge Ontario Finals!

Photo of Brendan, Anna, and Noah

On February 18th, three students representing the University of Waterloo’s School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) competed at the 2021 CFA Institute Research Challenge (IRC) Ontario Finals. Led by Faculty Advisor, Steve Balaban, student team members Brendan, Anna, Noah - all upper-year Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) students - competed against teams from Brock University, Carleton University, and York University and won first place!

Making real contributions to early business objectives through the BETS program

Edmond H. Math/CPA student

At first, I was scared of entering my first ever co-op because I had no real work-experience prior, however, the BETS program really came in clutch and helped me enter my first co-op placement extremely prepared.

Insider Look at Being a SAF Student


I’m what you call a battle-tested, seasoned veteran. No, not because I’m an Ace Pilot who has an airport named after me, but because I’ve been in your shoes, breaking a nervous sweat while wondering what life would be like past high school. (Spoiler: It’s pretty sweet!)

My Participation in the CFA Ethics Challenge: Lessons Learned

Johanna W. AFM Student

Participating in the CFA Ethics Challenge has provided me with an amazing opportunity to learn about the CFA Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct and to apply these ethics standards to a real-life scenario. All the feedback from faculty and the time spent together as a team in preparing for the presentation led to our team winning the local competition of the CFA Ethics Challenge!

Tips for Students Starting University



Chances are, you probably have not taken the time to reflect and get to know yourself very well. I would encourage everyone to take the time to learn about themselves. I have found it very helpful to think deeply about my passions, the ways in which I am developing, and the lessons that I am learning throughout my extra-curricular activities and coursework.  

How the Fellowship Program has Prepared me for uncertainty and risks

picture of Ms Zareen Zaidi

Learning and receiving support and guidance from various alumni.

Learning tips and skills in the Fellowship Program

Photo of Tanvi S

My name is Tanvi and I joined the Fellowship Program at SAF in the fall of 2020, and my experience has been nothing but amazing! With meeting my peers in the Fellowship Program, to getting to meet industry professionals who’ve achieved great heights in their profession, it is clear that I have been given an opportunity to improve and grow in many ways! The Fellowship Program did keep me quite busy, however, I enjoyed each stage of it. I think along the way, the enthusiasm of the Fellowship staff and other Fellowship students really made the experience worth it for me.

More Than Just a Stock Pitch

Brendan M. MACC student

Four lessons I learned competing at the CFA Institute Research Challenge.

How the Fellowship program has positively impacted my university life

Photo of Chelsea

Hello, my name is Chelsea and I just recently graduated from the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program. I’ve just started my Masters in January and and I’m so excited about that! My three-year Fellowship experience has been a fun and helpful ride. I have definitely gained lots of valuable skills from building a positive relationship with my Honouree and taking on Fellowship roles.

Community in Action

Photo of Rebecca L

Hi everyone! My name’s Rebecca and I’m a third-year Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) student. Some of my interests and hobbies include reading manga, drinking bubble tea, playing volleyball, but most of all, spending time with my friends! I’m happy to say not only the AFM program students but all of Waterloo have been welcoming of me and my interests since joining in 2018!

Being a Fellow has opened me up to opportunities that I wouldn’t have found anywhere else

picture of Eddie

Hey everyone! I’m a 1A student who has just completed my first term at the University of Waterloo in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program. With everything going on, it was a unique experience to say the least, but thanks to the hard work of the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF), I was able to make the best out of the circumstance and still create a memorable first term.

Feeling confident and hopeful in my abilities thanks to the Fellowship Program

Photo of Alina K

Hi everyone, I’m Alina and I’m in my 1A term of the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program. Like a lot of other first-year students, I was nervous about juggling the transition from high school to university. Joining the Fellowship Program has been a big help because it gave me the opportunity to meet a lot of new classmates that I otherwise would never have met because of the pandemic.

Learning and receiving support and guidance from my Honouree

Photo of Sarah L

Hello! I’m Sarah, a first-year fellow in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program. Deciding which university to attend is a big deal and trying to do so during a pandemic is even harder. Personally, the invite to the Fellowship Program was a huge part in deciding which school to go to. The thing that really intrigued me about the fellowship program was that each fellow gets an honouree who is a successful alumnus that is supposed to provide you with advice and guidance throughout your undergrad.

My advice to future AFM students

Photo of Albert C

Hey prospective students! My name is Albert, and I remember feeling scared and confused when I was applying to universities. I wanted to know how difficult the courses were, whether or not I would have free time, and how I could succeed. One of the things that helped me was hearing about current students’ experiences. If you’re feeling scared or confused yourself, hopefully reading about my experience within the AFM program will help!

An appreciation for the Fellowship Program Café and my Honouree

Photo of Maria Y

“Stay positive and look for the good in every position you are put in.” My Honouree reiterated the importance of mental well-being and positivity in the workplace and at school, a much-needed piece of advice as I wrapped up exams and head into my first co-op term.

Learning and receiving support and guidance from my Honouree

Photo of Nicole W

Hi! My name’s Nicole, and I’m a 2A student in the AFM program at UW. This is my first term in the Fellowship program, and the Fellowship Café was the first chance I’ve had to “meet” my Honouree, Krista Heuston.


Learning From My Fellowship Honouree’s Experiences

Nishika, AFM student

Hi everyone, my name is Nishika and I am a part of the School of Accounting and Finance (SAF) Fellowship program. As a member of the program, I was given the opportunity to be paired with a distinguished Honouree member of the SAF Alumni. My Honouree was none other than Russ Weir. Russ is an acclaimed industry professional who is currently the Office Managing Partner at BDO Canada, LLP.

The Fellowship Program: A fruitful learning experience


Fellowship events have added colour to the current online learning environment for me and made my transition into university an exciting one!

The Fellowship Program has been one of the highlights of my first term studying Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) here at the University of Waterloo. In addition to meeting a group of like-minded and motivated peers, I have been introduced to numerous opportunities that I would never have even heard of otherwise.

Opening myself up to new opportunities


Question: How has being a Fellow and the extra connection you have with your Honouree helped you transition to an online learning environment successfully?

How the Fellowship Program helped my career goals

Nicholas B.

Hello, I’m Nicholas B. I’m in my 1A term of the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program at Waterloo. Accounting and finance found its way into my life in high school, where I was fortunate enough to have an accounting course offered to me. Accounting doesn’t run in my family, so it was an all-new and exciting adventure into the unknown.

Fellowship Cafe - Bolstering the Honouree Relationship

Vishnu, SAF student

What’s up, Warriors! My name is Vishnu, I’m a first-year student in Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) and I’d love to share some insight into the opportunities and experiences you stand to gain as part of the Fellowship Program.

How the Fellowship Program has Impacted my Learning and Future Career Goals

Sherry F., SAF

Becoming Comfortable with Uncertainty

As a student in the Fellowship Program, my future is so clear that I can see it from 100 miles away. Did I get you? Did you believe that?

Okay I didn’t think so. The future is always filled with uncertainty and unanswered questions, but that’s the exciting part of the journey! I don’t have a clear outline for my future career, but this unknown gives me the freedom to seize any opportunities that come my way.

AFM and Sustainable Finance

image of Ms Zareen Zaidi

In my past 4 years in AFM, terms such as environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) have increased exponentially in importance and frequency when discussing any business. Given my past co-op work terms in finance, accounting, and most recently a not-for-profit organization (NPO), I was interested in how this renewed focus on sustainability would play out as we as a society continue to challenge the responsibilities and duties that a corporation should undertake.

Battling it out on Bay Street…what a wild ride!

Photo of Michael K, Roberto B, and Isaac D

In the first week of January 2021, we, Michael K., Roberto B., and Isaac D. competed at the 14th annual Battle on Bay (BoB) case competition organized by the Ryerson University Finance Society (RUFS). The BoB is a three-day event where students from more than 10 schools across Canada work in teams of three to four members and compete by developing a stock pitch and completing a crisis case.

My Co-op Search During Covid-19 Visualized


Reposted from LinkedIn with permission.

This fall, I entered my second year of university in the Accounting and Financial Management program and began to search for my first co-op job. Given the backdrop of the global pandemic, I knew that the process would be more challenging than usual.

What it was like to win Campus Brand Ambassador of the Year


A conference is only as successful as the team who plans it, and while hosting STRIVE virtually for the first time was indeed a challenging decision, it turned out to be very successful! During the summer while I was applying for the STRIVE case competition, I thought to myself, “why not take it one step further and apply for a CBA position rather than being just a delegate?” I thought it would be interesting to take on a role I had never tried in the past. After rounds of interviews with several other candidates, I was both proud and excited to be selected to represent the University of Waterloo as a CBA.

Correcting my misconceptions of hackathons

a picture of Ms Tamania

Now, first things first, as a student in the Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) program at the University of Waterloo, my knowledge of coding is pretty limited. I had the misconception that only students who knew how to code or “hack” could participate in hackathons. For anyone else with similar notions, let me tell you that you are entirely incorrect!

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