Unlock Your Potential with the Rotman Executive MBA

With the One Year Executive MBA (EMBA) program at the Rotman School of Management, we’re focusing on helping managers and executives discover their true leadership potential. The EMBA curriculum is dedicated to real life application and taught by a world renowned faculty who are experts in the field.  Jasmine Wong, EMBA 2017 shares her experiences with the program.

Share Your Experience

Jasmine Wong

Jasmine Wong, Senior Manager, Planning, Office of the President, Rogers Communications

Jasmine is a Senior Manager, Planning in the Office of the President at Rogers Communications. Her work revolves around executing visions through key initiatives such as regional planning and delivering the strategic agenda of the organization.  “I always wanted to do an MBA, so it was always about the timing. I had some of the business theory through my undergraduate degree in Commerce but I felt I needed the industry knowledge to make the most out of the MBA so that I could bring those experiences to the classroom.” The Executive MBA Class of 2017 had on average 15 years of work experience and nine years in a management position.

“One of the best things about the EMBA program is the teaching style. Instead of learning a theory and when to use it, the EMBA program focuses on sharing our work experience, and drawing on how they apply to the theories and the lessons that we can learn from each other. It’s a great combination of discussions, lecture and case-based learning.”

Leadership Development

Students in this program will master the fundamentals of business strategy, operations, accounting, finance, marketing and human resources. “I was expecting to gain analytical and business knowledge out of the program which I did but I feel the true value of the program lies in its leadership development initiatives.”

Incorporated into the curriculum is the Leadership Development Program (LDP) which provides tools, one-on-one coaching and experimental learning to facilitate growth and leadership skills. “By getting feedback from my managers and peers, it helps me understand my strength and weaknesses and how I connect with people. Through the LDP program, I’ve gained a better understanding of where I can grow and my leadership style.”

Flexible Schedule

The structure of the program is designed to maximize learning for working professionals while minimizing the time away from work. There are four one week residential modules in downtown Toronto followed by classes every other Friday and Saturday over 13 months. “One of the reasons I chose Rotman’s Executive MBA was its unique format compared to other programs. With this schedule I’m able to have classes at regular intervals and keep in touch. Also by having classes on the weekends, I am able to immediately take what I’ve learned and apply it on Monday morning.”

“I highly encourage the program to anyone who is looking to becoming a better leader. Rogers has been extremely supportive of my EMBA journey.” Jasmine highlights that good communication and time management skills are key drivers to success in the program. “It’s important to set clear expectations and communicate with both my team at work and my classmates. If I need to travel for work while a project is due, I make sure that I let my classmates know ahead of time. It’s an intense program for sure, but the rewards at the end are definitely worth it.”


To learn more about the One-Year Executive MBA Program, visit our website.

 

Balancing a Master’s degree with a family

Pursuing a Master’s degree is a large decision to make and starting a family is an even bigger one. Imagine trying to both now; that is to undertake a Master’s degree program while continue to working and raising a family. It’s tough, but it’s not impossible.

At the Rotman School of Management, we make a continued commitment to all our students in supporting their professional development but also personal growth. We spoke to Jinzi Zheng, MBA 2017 on how to balance her time between raising a family, pursuing an MBA and working at the same time.

Prior to joining Rotman, she obtained her Bachelor of Applied Science in Biomedical Engineering and also has a PhD in medical biophysics and is currently a scientist at UHN and assistant professor of Biomedical Engineering. She is also the Co-Founder of Nanovista Inc., a startup dedicated to developing new technology that can help with patient care.

New Priorities

During her 2nd year in the program, she decided it was time that she wanted to raise a family. “Having a child changed a lot in my life but I’m grateful that everyone in the program was super supportive. Because of that, I didn’t have to lose any time to complete my MBA. All the faculty and staff’s willingness to be flexible has allowed me to progress smoothly through this journey.”

Time management was also an essential skill to successfully balancing the MBA and family. Jinzi says that her situation was not too different from other part time students. “All of us in the program have a full time job that we are managing. I like to think of myself as having just that extra bit of commitment with my family. Because of the cohort nature of the program, we all have the same challenges but by working together, we’re able to overcome these obstacles and build a better relationship while doing so.”

Her advice for those in similar situations is that “there’s never a best time to have a child so if you feel now is the time to do a master’s degree, it’s best to pursue this degree sooner rather than later. There’s no better place to do a part time MBA than at Rotman. The school’s strong reputation and convenient location to Canada’s business hub made it an easy choice for me. Remember that doing an MBA and starting a family are not mutually exclusive.”

Journey of a Lifetime

After completing her MBA, Jinzi hopes to use the knowledge she has gained from the program to continue to run her successful company as well as leveraging her network to grow professionally. “Through this program, the people that I have met and the connections I’ve made have definitely changed my career. It’s great to be part of the Rotman family. The entire experience has been amazing for me.

To learn more about our programs for working professionals, visit our website.

Business Design: A Human Centered Approach to Problem Solving

Stephanie Grimbly is a current Rotman Morning MBA student. In this 2-part blog series, she shares her experiences in the Business Design Accelerator Series at Rotman.

Stephanie Grimbly, Rotman MBA '19

Stephanie Grimbly, MBA ’19, Channel Account Manager, Avaya

After many months contemplating exactly what it was that I was looking for in an MBA program I had an “ah-ha” moment when I discovered Rotman’s Business Design major. The concept of Business Design checked a lot of boxes for me in terms of the kind of work I wanted to get involved in – creative problem solving of complex issues – and therefore the kind of knowledge and skills I wanted to bone-up on via an MBA. I already knew I enjoyed the process of brainstorming and “ideation”.

Now two semesters into the program, I’m very pleased to report that my expectations of what the Rotman Morning MBA program would offer have been exceeded. My favorite aspect of the program is The Business Design Accelerator Series offered by Rotman’s DesignWorks.

Rotman DesignWorks


Designed for, and offered to MBA candidates who work full-time, the Business Design Accelerator Series is exactly the kind of extra-curricular opportunity an MBA student hopes to take advantage of while in school.


This six-part series is a step-by-step introduction to Business Design principles and tools (quite literally the building blocks of the problem-solving framework I was looking for!) The idea behind the series is that participants walk away with a better understanding of what Business Design is, and the value it can offer any professional looking to get creative and innovate at work. The absolute best part of this series is that, as working professionals, participants can immediately apply some of these principles and tools to the work they do today.


One of the primary reasons I decided to do a part-time MBA instead of full-time was I valued the opportunity to immediately apply what I was learning at school in my full-time job.


And this is exactly my intention for the strategies, exercises and protocols introduced during the Accelerator Series – to apply them in my current job!

Regardless of role, responsibilities or industry, Business Design Theory is inherently valuable to the individuals and teams who leverage it because it is a multi-dimensional problem solving methodology. When the problem is too complex, unprecedented or is actually the amalgamation of many smaller, intertwined issues, the most prudent approach to tackling that problem is not with broad strokes in management style, organizational structure, financial finessing or economic intervention – at least not right away. Instead, it begins with a thorough investigation into the factors that make up the problem, a systematic breakdown of primary factors into the human needs and emotions that perpetuate them followed by rapid iteration of many possible resolutions and, finally, a critical evaluation of each prototype to assess its viability.

The bottom line is that complex, unprecedented problems demand intricate investigation, creative consideration and deliberate solutions.


Stay tuned for part two of Stephanie’s blog posts on the Rotman DesignWorks Business Design Accelerator Series. Interested in exploring the Morning MBA at Rotman? Contact us to learn more!

Design Your Future with the Rotman Executive MBA

As we close in on the end of another academic year, our graduating classes had a chance to reflect on their time at Rotman. Rodney Cheung, Executive MBA Class of 2017 is just one of many who are excited to leverage the knowledge and skills he’s gained to make a real world impact. Prior to joining Rotman, Rodney obtained his Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc) in Systems Design Engineering with the Management Sciences option at the University of Waterloo. We had an opportunity to talk with him about his experiences in the Rotman EMBA program.

Rodney Cheung, EMBA 2017

Where are you currently working? Currently, I am the Chief Information Officer (CIO) at MediSolutions.  At MediSolutions, we are working to create a brand-new business model. We are taking a startup mentality within a 34-year-old company and our executive team is creating a brand-new business model based on technical Machine Learning innovation to integrate pharmaceutical companies and advertisers to enhance patient care worldwide.

What is a fun fact about yourself: I’m an arts lover in particular with foreign films and live music performances!

Why did you choose the Executive MBA program at Rotman?  Rotman has all of the characteristics of a leading EMBA program including world class faculty, reputation for excellence and alumni network.  One unique aspect is Rotman’s Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) which focuses on developing massively scalable startup ventures.

What did you enjoy most about business school in general? Throughout the program, the most enjoyable aspect was how the class grew together during the year to form strong bonds and help each other. It’s like we became an extended family.  I was not expecting this aspect and am thankful for the great experiences shared with all my new friends from diverse backgrounds whom I can continue to learn from in the years ahead.

What were some of the extracurricular activities you were involved with at Rotman?: I’m a member of Rotman’s Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) which is focused on value creation and capture through building massively scalable technology startups with focus on Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI). I’ve been a recipient of the John Harris Award for outstanding performance in the CDL program in 2016/17 for students who have demonstrated entrepreneurial ability through curiosity and by transforming ambition into action.

What was your favorite MBA course and what was the biggest insight you gained about business from it?  Coming from an engineering background with concentration on technology, I had thought that the quantitative courses would be the most enjoyable for me.  Instead, the many qualitative courses on leadership were my favorites with one of the many highlights being John Oesch’s Business Problem Solving (BPS).  From understanding the role of one’s hidden biases to understanding the role of congruence amongst all aspects within an organization, I gained many insights.

What is the biggest myth about going back to school?  That it is not worth it once you’re at a senior level.  It is reasonable to believe once you have reached a certain level of success within your career that you have the answers and know how best to proceed. The reality is that it is just the opposite.  Although you have reached an advanced level in your career with a great skillset, let your confidence open you up to new avenues of learning.  An Executive MBA program opens your mind to new capabilities and new options which will provide even more opportunities to advance you career, help others grow, and help organizations succeed.

What is your best piece of advice to an applicant hoping to get into the Rotman Executive MBA program? As senior management, you’re likely living inside an extremely busy schedule already so you’re probably thinking about how can I cope with all of this additional work. One aspect that worked for me early on was the changing of your mindset from “I have to do this” to “I get to do this” which puts things in an entirely different light.  Instead of coping and thinking of ways to get by, you believe that you have this exceptional opportunity to learn and to have fun. This reshaping of your mindset can be the root for new development.


Interested in our EMBA program? Contact us directly at emba@rotman.utoronto.ca. The deadline to apply for this year’s incoming class is June 1.

To learn more about the Executive MBA program visit our website.

An early look at our Morning and Evening MBA Classes of 2020

It is at this time of the year when Morning and Evening MBA classes really begin to take shape ahead of the August start. Here we look at a few of the candidates who are looking forward to embarking on their MBA later this year.

As you will see they all have a number of years of work experience and come from a variety of industries. With different backgrounds come different ideas and perspectives which is one of the great things about the classes for the working professional programs – you learn not only from the Rotman faculty but from the experiences of your classmates as well.

Interested in being part of the working professional MBA class starting this September?

Send your resume and transcript to Rummy Gill, Assistant Director, Morning & Evening MBA who would be happy to discuss how a Rotman MBA could help you reach your career goals ahead of the next application deadline.

Image of Bradley Leufkens

 

Bradley Leufkens

Senior Principal, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
8 years of work experience
BSc in Physics, University of Guelph

 

 

 

Image of Cecilia Cheng

 

Cecilia Cheng
Senior Consultant, Toyota Canada Inc.
6 years of work experience
Bachelor of Environmental Studies, University of Waterloo

 

 

 

 

Image of Nirusan Rajakulendran

 

Nirusan Rajakulendran
Industry Analyst, MaRS Discovery District
7 years of work experience
BSc Cell and Molecular Biology, , University of Toronto
Master of Biotechnology, University of Toronto

 

 

 

Image of Hande Akseki

 

Hande Akseki
Senior Analyst, Pratt & Whitney Canada
6 years of work experience
BEng, Istanbul Technical University
Master of Applied Science, McMaster

Introducing Our Executive MBA and Global Executive MBA Programs!

The Rotman School of Management offers degree programs for working professionals at all stages of their career. For senior management professionals looking to take their careers to the next level, we’re pleased to introduce our One-Year Executive MBA and Global Executive MBA programs to this blog. You’ll get an inside look into these two programs and read about current students and alumni as they take you through their transformative journey at Canada’s top business school.

The One Year Executive MBA is more than just a degree, it’s a hands-on leadership experience that will change the way you think and lead. Over 13 months, a combination of an innovative curriculum, world renowned faculty, and participation in our Leadership Develop Program will give senior decision-makers the tools to reach their true leadership potential.

Taught through in-person classes on Fridays and Saturdays twice a month and four one-week residential modules, the program is structured to minimize time spent away from work while maximizing learning.

Visit the One Year Executive MBA website to learn more.

The Global Executive MBA is an 18-month program for working professionals that takes you on a journey to key business hubs on 5 continents around the world. This program allows students to grow their leadership on the global stage. In between residential modules, students work on assigned readings, and team-based and individual projects.

As globalization continues to dissolve business boundaries, obtaining an internationally recognized degree from one of the world’s most prestigious universities sets you up to make an immediate impact in your career and organization.

Visit the Global Executive MBA, website to learn more.

We’re excited to be bringing you content from these two programs in the near future.

Test Out Your Skills With Case Competitions

A combination of academic excellence and a global reputation makes the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto Canada’s top business school. There are so many ways for MBA students to customize their experience at Rotman. One excellent way is through case competitions where students can test their skills and knowledge in real time. Chris Daniel, Morning MBA Class of 2019 competed in the MLSE Case Competition in October. In this blog post, he shares his enthusiasm about the value of case competitions and how they enhance the learning experience beyond the classroom.

Apply Your Knowledge

In the MLSE Case Competition hosted by the Rotman Marketing Association and the Rotman Sports Business Association, teams of five students pitched new partnership opportunities for the sporting franchise giant. Teams had one week to analyze and prepare recommendations to MLSE executives. Out of the 15 teams that competed, one team was comprised of entirely Part-Time MBA students.

The Part Time MBA Team finishes in the top 5! (From left to right, Suraj Bhardwaj, Morning MBA 19, Fraser Scott Evening MBA 19, Mihae Ahn, Evening MBA 19, Aditya Ramesh, Morning MBA 19, Chris Daniel, Morning MBA 19)

Although he had just begun the program a month prior, the skills and concepts from the core courses were immediately applied throughout this case. During his first intensive week, Chris took RSM 2607: Managerial Negotiations. He described it as “extremely relevant in my role.” The case involved understanding different organizations that MLSE would be in contact with and developing the right approach to the negotiation strategy for each of these parties.

The knowledge from this course and others is also extremely valuable to his day-to-day professional life. For example, Chris is “constantly negotiating for internal and external resources depending on the project that I am working on. After taking Negotiations, I learned how to approach these conversations more effectively.” Another example of utilizing knowledge that was gained was with RSM 1360: Leading People in Organizations. “The one thing that stood out for me from leading people in organizations was the decision making process. Having a framework of best practices has “helped make my meetings more efficient by using concepts learned to ensure that the right decision makers are in the room at the right time.”

Different Perspectives

During the MBA core curriculum, students are placed in groups based on their education and work experience which brings diversity and multiple perspectives to tackling any problem. The Morning & Evening MBA Class of 2019 students has working professionals with established roots in the industry noted by an average work experience of 6 years prior to starting the program. Chris explains that this is so beneficial “since the Class of 2019 has a great mix of experiences, personalities, and backgrounds, we all work extremely well together.” This was highlighted by the composition of the Part-Time MBA team in the case competition which comprised of two marketing managers, an insurance underwriter, an engineer and a consultant.

There are many reasons why the Rotman Morning MBA attracts diversity. Palak Sharma, Morning MBA Class of 2019 comes from an engineering background which lends to a strong foundation in critical reasoning and logic building. She believes that “a Rotman MBA will help me adapt these skills to a broader range of subjects in order to become a well-rounded business leader.” The cohort structure for the first half of the program allows friendships developed to transform into a powerful lifelong network.

Showcase Your Skills

Following the case competition was an exclusive opportunity for participants to network with MLSE representatives. A career in the sports marketing industry is something that Chris is considering upon graduation and “this is what makes case competitions unique. Instead of just having a coffee chat, I’m able to showcase my thought process when faced with a specific challenge and pitch ideas to sports executives.” Competitions such as these provide a way for students to make an impression as well as allowing Rotman to showcase the high caliber of its students to potential employers.

Teams presenting in the final round of the MLSE Competition

Chris’s biggest piece of advice is that “”you get out of the program what you put into it, and more specifically to take advantage of the unique opportunities that a Rotman MBA provides you with.”

To learn more about the Morning & Evening MBA program, visit our website.

 

Empowering Women in Business

March 8 was International Women’s Day, a day dedicated to celebrating the achievements of all women as well as the progression towards gender equality. The Rotman School of Management is committed to providing women opportunities for advancement in their respective fields, for example we offer financial support throughour Women in Finance awards. We’ve seen an increasing number of female student enrol in our masters programs and are fortunate to also have dedicated faculty, staff and students who are taking the initiative to advocate for gender equality.

61st UN Commission on the Status of Women

Sabrina Wu, MFin 2017, is just one of our many students who are passionate about this cause. She was selected to attend the 61st Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) at the United Nations in New York. Sabrina currently is a member on the Board of Directors for YWCA, a not-for-profit (NFP) which promotes equality and economic security for all women. This year’s UN CSW priority theme is women’s economic empowerment in the changing world of work. During the two week commission, emerging female leaders and NFPs gather together to hold discussions as well as to hear from each other about empowering women. We asked Sabrina what she was hoping for prior to her departure to the UN headquarters. “I am really looking forward to meeting women leaders around the world on a cause that is dear to my heart.”

Sabrina Wu, MFin 2017 at the UN Headquarters in New York

The commission exceeded Sabrina’s expectations.

Throughout the week she attended many events, each giving her a new perspective and opening her eyes to the realities of the world. “I was surprised at the differences and the important issues that surround different countries. The UN CSW was the biggest international event that I have ever been to. I had this amazing opportunity to meet representatives from 193 member states of the UN and I learned so much about the different issues that are important to different regions of the world.” At the Government of Canada reception, she had the opportunity to meet elected government officials including the Minister of the Status of Women, Maryam Monsef, and participate in roundtable discussions on important issues facing young women and girls. Minister Monsef emphasized the need to empower women and girls, saying, “When we leave out 50% of the population, our economy will not grow.”

Sabrina with Maryam Monsef, Minister of Status of Women

One of Sabrina’s most memorable moments was attending a townhall with the UN Secretary General, António Guterres. In 2015, 193 member states of the UN unanimously adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which includes an ambitious set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). There are 17 SDGs with number 5 being to “achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.” Packed with hundreds of women and men from NGOs and government officials around the world, the Secretary General emphasized the importance of civil and political society working together to achieving the 2030 Agenda. This was another takeaway for Sabrina: “It meant a lot to me to hear world leaders committing to working towards gender equality.”

UN Secretary General speaking at townhall

Guiding Others

“Looking at my own experience at work and at the YWCA, I was extremely fortunate to have great mentors who care about empowering women. We need more great role models, more women on corporate boards and in senior management.” Professionally, Sabrina is a Money Market Trader for a large international bank. She benefited from having a very supportive manager who had taken an interest in guiding her. Since her first day at work, Patricia Castanheiro, Senior FX Trader and VP at The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ had been supportive and encouraged Sabrina to pursue higher education and get engaged in leadership opportunities outside the bank.

“Patriciais an incredible manager, mentor and friend to me. She will always push me to aim higher, learn more and develop my skills. It’s great to have someone like her on my side. It means a lot to me.”

Make a Difference

Sabrina’s main advice to others and prospective students is to get involved. “Though we have come a long way, we still haven’t achieved gender equality. We need to get more women to come forward and take leadership roles. Volunteering for causes brings together like-minded people. I am inspired by all the women trailblazers who came before us and made a difference in this world. Let’s join forces with them and together we can achieve our ambitious goal of 50/50 by 2030”.

Rotman has many programs dedicated to advancing the career of women across many industries through our Initiative for Women in Business.

For more information about the Master of Finance program, visit our website.

 

Build Something Massive at the Creative Destruction Lab

In today’s rapidly changing world, new innovations and technology are at the forefront of economic growth. Having recognized this early on, the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto has become a leader in developing the next generation of entrepreneurs with the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Major as well as the Creative Destruction Lab. Since its launch in 2012, startup ventures from the Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) program have generated over $1 Billion in equity value. We spoke with Yen On, Morning MBA 2016 who currently is the Course Manager at the Creative Destruction Lab. She shares more about what the CDL program is and how MBA students can get involved with the Lab.

Yen On, Morning MBA 2016

The Creative Destruction Lab is made up of three parties who work tightly together over the course of 9 months. First there are the G7/ML7 Fellows who are phenomenal and successful entrepreneurs that advise companies who go through the CDL program. Examples of advisors are Ted Livingston, founder of Kik and Tony Lacavera, founder of Wind Mobile.  Second are early stage technology companies looking to scale their idea into a high growth company. Finally, there are a group of talented MBA students who join through the CDL course where they work with one of these startups during the year.

The MBA Impact

When Yen was a student at Rotman, she was accepted into the CDL course in her third year. She initially wanted to pursue her MBA because she wanted to move up in her company.  “I discovered early on that  there were so many opportunities outside of my industry. I wanted to expand out of the corporate space and make the jump from media to technology,” she explained. The CDL course further propelled Yen to keep an open mind. “Once I was in the CDL course, I realized that my mindset was so similar to the other people in the Lab. Their roll-up-your-sleeves attitude really resonated with me. The work culture was appealing and there is a huge amount of potential in this industry.”

MBA students undertake a variety of tasks including building financial models and developing strategies to ultimately create value for the startups they are working with. With tight 8 week deadlines between objectives, these committed students are instrumental in helping startups achieve those objectives. “Having been through the program, I know how impactful MBA students can be in the Creative Destruction Lab.”

Explore Innovative Opportunities

At Rotman, students learn top management practices from a world renowned faculty but also gain an opportunity to apply their knowledge to real world business problems. The Creative Destruction Lab is a risk free way to experience working in a startup. “People who want to create their own company but don’t know how to can have a trial run and get an inside look at the effort it takes to propel a startup.” It also provides a way for students to explore areas outside of their comfort zone and gain exposure to leaders who have revolutionized their respective industries. “Rotman is truly amazing. I love the fact that we can always be inspired by other people at the school.”

For more information about the Part Time MBA program, visit our website.

Advance Your Career with the Morning MBA

Making an immediate impact is just one of many benefits of the Morning MBA program at the Rotman School of Management. Offered over 32 months, the Morning MBA program allows high achieving working professionals to maintain their work schedule while earning their degree. This blog features current students as they share their thoughts about why they chose to pursue the Morning MBA program.

Match Your Lifestyle

For many students in the program including Pallavi Armoogum, Morning MBA 2019, balancing family commitments while pursuing an MBA posed a challenge. The solution to being able to do both? Rotman’s Morning MBA. Pallavi explains that “I have a family as well as a very demanding full-time job. The morning MBA worked beautifully with my rather frantic schedule.” She also comments that “I get a feeling of satisfaction when walking out of class at 9 a.m. knowing that I’ve already maximized the utility of the first few hours of my day.”

By attending classes in the morning, not only does it not affect students’ work commitments but it frees up time in the evenings to participate in social events.

Palak Sharma, Morning MBA 2019

Palak Sharma, Morning MBA 2019 agrees with this. “I consciously picked the Morning MBA program as I am more productive and efficient in learning new concepts when my mind is fresh. Also because I have classes in the morning, I have my evenings free to do various things: whether it is socializing or pursuing my other passions.” Heather Trommels, incoming Morning MBA 2020 shares her thoughts “I’ve always been a morning person so morning classes suit my schedule really well.” Since students are able to maximize the early mornings with class, it makes it easier to plan the rest of their day knowing that they have already completed class for the day. The Morning MBA program provides schedule flexibility to our working professional students.

 

Real World Applications

Students in the Morning MBA also gain the advantage of instantly applying what they’ve learned as they make the transition from the classroom to the boardroom. Palak highlights this as an advantage because “as I have class in the morning, I’m able to apply the concepts I’ve just learned right away to my job.” Pallavi says that “every class I’ve taken that is related to building leadership skills has had an immediate and profound impact on my perspective at work.”

The MBA Curriculum is designed to teach future business leaders a new way to think. It provides a solid foundation in business fundamentals and Rotman’s integrated thinking methodology allows our students to tackle some of the toughest business problems.

Endless Opportunities

Although it is demanding, the benefits and career development opportunities from the Morning MBA program are certainly well worth it. “Since I am in a classroom with working professionals from a wide range of background and experiences, I’m not just learning from my professors but also a lot from my peers.” explains Chris Daniel, Morning MBA 2019 “We’re able to share our perspectives and experiences which makes the Morning MBA even more valuable.” With an average of 6 years of work experience, the MBA for working professionals has a cohort of more senior students.

Throughout the program, students will gain a strong business acumen and realize their leadership potential all while translating their knowledge to make real impacts in the industry. “It’s always useful to have people from different industries thinking of things you never thought of and how you can incorporate that change into your own work.” comments Heather.

To learn more about the Morning & Evening MBA program, visit our website at http://www.rotman.utoronto.ca/Degrees/MastersPrograms/MBAPrograms/PTMBA

 

MFin 360 – What’s it like to work for a Master of Finance student?

Interview with Diana Shynkarenko, CGA, CPA

With a robust program structure and curriculum, the Master of Finance (MFin) is designed to help finance professionals not only become technical experts, but also inspiring leaders.

Jose Rivas, MFin 2017

This week we spoke to Diana Shynkarenko, CPA, CGA a Financial Analyst at the Canadian Diabetes Association. Her supervisor is MFin candidate Jose Rivas, MFin’17, CPA, CGA. Read below to get her take on the benefits of the MFin program.

We are excited to hear about your perspective on the value of the MFin and your experience working with one of our students. Could you tell us a little bit about your work with Jose?

Jose was recently promoted, actually. But, up until a few months ago, he was my manager at the Canadian Diabetes Association where I am a Financial Analyst, working under the accounting umbrella. I reported directly to him for over a year and worked on several initiatives that he implemented for our team since he started the MFin program.

Have you noticed any difference since he joined the MFin program?

Definitely. I’ve seen him implement quite a few changes that have made a positive impact on the way our team works, and ultimately on our organization. There is no question that Jose’s leadership has helped build a more collaborate and professional team. In fact, soon after he joined the program, he introduced new team huddles where we discuss our work and figure out how we can work better as a team.

As a bonus, in every meeting we get to choose a professional topic for discussion, and one lucky person gets to present on the topic for professional development purposes. To choose a topic of discussion we would all take a vote. I found these professional development sessions so valuable that I actually lobbied for topics that I’m extremely interested in. Fortunately, I was successful and got the team to learn about the Beneish manipulation index—a concept Jose explored deeply during the MFin program.

In your day-to-day have you experienced any moment when the knowledge and skills that Jose has acquired through the MFin program impacted the work of your team?

The MFin has made Jose much more aware of every-day inefficiencies at work and the ways he could turn them into opportunities for improvement. He got our team to implement procedural and technical changes that enhanced our reporting database to the point that our month-end became more efficient and accurate. This is a very exciting fact in the world of accounting!

Have you seen your work improve through mentorship you’ve received from Jose since he joined the program?

Yes, absolutely! Jose really likes to challenge his team. There’s never a dull moment when you are part of his team. For example, I was working on a complex project for cash forecasting. It was exciting and challenging at the same time. In order to support me in the project development, Jose took the time to look at my progress and pointed to areas where I could find answers to successfully complete the project. Instead of just giving me the answers, Jose taught me ways to think about the problem and its solution.

As a manager, he is aware of what his employees know and how they work, and that’s important. He knows what it takes to do our jobs and how to support us when in need. At the same time, though, if we came up with a better way to do something, he would listen and would encourage us to take the lead.

Through the MFin program students often get to expand their network inside and outside their workplace, have you seen an example of this in your work with Jose?

At work we definitely work more closely with HR and IT since Jose joined the program. I think his experience with the MFin has allowed him to see the key benefits of working across teams to implement sustainable change. In finance, much of the change will ultimately impact other teams and require the support of subject-matter experts within the company. For example, when making changes to payroll systems you need to collaborate with both IT and HR.

Outside of our company, we noticed that Jose made quite a few connections with consultants who he then brought along to evaluate some of our processes at work to find ways to improve them.

 

Inside the Morning MBA Classroom

You can find Canada’s only Morning MBA program at the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto. Here, ambitious working professionals learn from a world class MBA from 7-8:59AM twice a week before work.

We recently had the opportunity to speak with Ain Ansari, Morning MBA Class of 2018 who gave us an inside look into the classroom of a Morning MBA student. He shares his insight into courses, work life balance and the integrated thinking method at Rotman.

Intensive weeks

As part of the program schedule, students partake in 3 different intensive weeks. This is where students take part in a course that is condensed into a one week timeframe. During an intensive week, students take the entire week off work and are fully dedicated to school and immersed in their studies. The schedule is packed, typically running from 9AM- 4PM. As Ain describes, “Intensive courses are case-based, it’s not as much lecture and textbook readings, but instead based on case and in class discussions.” Students are taught concepts through lecture based-learning and then apply them in a case-based scenario. The week is fast paced and requires students to be on top of all readings and to be prepared to actively participate in class.

Morning MBA Students celebrate after the Winter 2018 Intensive Week is Over!

Ain took RSM2607: Managerial Negotiations with Professor Glen Whyte for his first intensive week. He described it as “an extremely practical course. We had a different case every day that we would discuss and act out in role-play.” For example, one situation had students divided into 6 different parties where they had to negotiate the best deal. Strategies that were taught included union, B2B, employer and government – business negotiations.

Customizing your degree

During a school semester, students take two courses, one on Tuesday and one on Thursday, both from 7AM – 8:59AM. During the first half of the program, students take the core courses required in the curriculum. Throughout the remainder of the program, students can pick from over 90 elective courses from 16 different majors to fully customize their MBA experience based on their interest and career goals.

Our MBA students are focusing intently during a lecture

One of Ain’s favorite course thus far in his MBA journey is RSM 1310: Economic Environment of Business taught by Professor Walid Hejazi. The course focuses on the economic drivers that go into making a decision as well as how current global issues are impacting Canadian business. While the course covered many tangible topics, it was “[Professor Hejazi] who made the experience so good. He was engaging, enthusiastic and had many real world experiences and examples to support the class.”

Strategy in a global context

During another intensive week, Ain took RSM1301: Fundamentals of Strategic Management with Professor Will Mitchell. He discovered that when developing a strategy, there is a lot of quantitative reasoning involved. There were a lot of examples in Canada as well as emerging markets that highlighted relevant cases. The course forces students to think critically and ask questions that a normal investor would not ask.

Designed for working professionals

As a working professional in the Morning MBA program, Ain notes that “It’s definitely challenging to dedicate both time to school and work and to succeed in the program; time management is key. Work life balance can be done but you have to manage your time well.”

His best tip for prospective students is to “Do your research. The quality of education, reputation and location of the school and the quality of professors is very important. Rotman is at the top in all these categories. The Rotman brand carries a lot of weight.”


To learn more about the Morning & Evening MBA program, visit our website.

MFin 360 – Leadership begins with teamwork

Interview with Celina Li, Hedge Fund Accountant

The Master of Finance (MFin) at the Rotman School of Management develops leaders who are also key team players at work. Elizabeth Ren, CPA, CA, MFin ’17 is a great example. Recently, we interviewed Celina Li, Hedge Fund Accountant at SS & C Technologies and Elizabeth’s colleague, who emphasized the benefits of working alongside an MFin student.

Elizabeth Ren, MFin '17, Fund Accountant, SS&C Technologies

Elizabeth Ren, MFin ’17, Fund Accountant, SS&C Technologies

Hello Celina! Thank you for chatting with us. We are excited to hear your thoughts on what it’s like to work with a Master of Finance student. Could you tell us a little bit about your work with Elizabeth?

Thank you for reaching out, I am happy to tell you about my work with Elizabeth.

We currently work under the same director, but for different funds. Essentially, we have the same position, but we work with different clients. However, we work in a team environment, so we have opportunities to collaborate with each other on such things as financial reporting. We also engage in discussions during our monthly team meetings.

Do you find that your discussions at work are different with Elizabeth?

The technical knowledge she shares with us during meetings and when working on team projects helps solve issues that benefit the whole team, not just her clients. For example, she is currently in charge of setting up a new fund and, as a colleague, I get to learn from her experience and the creative solutions she brings to develop this fund. Ultimately, it is a learning opportunity for the whole team.

What would you say are important skills that she’s been able to learn and integrate in her work since she became an MFin student?

She’s been able to learn how to prioritize and manage her time to reach a high performance level at work as well as in school. In fact, she always comes to work early to avoid missing any deadlines while she is completing coursework.

Do you find that teamwork is different since Elizabeth joined the program?

Elizabeth is a very effective and collaborative team player. I think this comes from having to work on group projects during her MFin program. Recently she was tasked with training two new colleagues; she’s doing a stellar job at mentoring them and explaining the ins and outs of our work.

Has her experience in the MFin program impacted your own work in any way?

Definitely. As she creates the new fund for her client, I get to learn the strategies she implements to arrive at a solution. It is also inspiring to see her become a leader as she trains and mentors new colleagues.


Are you an aspiring leader at work? Join us at one of our admissions events or contact us to learn more about the Master of Finance at the Rotman School of Management.

Think critically with Rotman’s Morning & Evening MBA

At the Rotman School of Management, the Morning & Evening MBA is not just another business degree. It is also an opportunity for you to strengthen your critical thinking skills in a business environment—essential as you move up in your career.

In this week’s interview, two of our students’ employers share their thoughts about the Rotman MBA program and what they think has been one of the most valuable skills their employees have gained: critical thinking.

Run Yu, Rotman MBA '18

Run Yu, Rotman MBA ’18

Dennis McCatty, Director of Sales at Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Run Yu’s (MBA ’18) employer, believes that Run’s existing professional capabilities can take her far in her MBA career. Since joining the program, he noticed a substantial improvement in the way Run approaches problems in the workplace.

Asked about his reaction to Run’s interest in joining the Rotman MBA program he said:

When Run was thinking about joining the Rotman MBA program she approached a number of people in the organization, including myself. Because I already thought that she was a great professional with a lot of potential, my first reaction was to say that she didn’t really need an MBA. After all, many executives have gone a long way without the degree.

However, once Run explained that she wanted to join the program and the Rotman community to confront new challenges and gain new perspectives in the business field, I was on board with the idea. As a learning experience, the MBA program can reveal new frontiers, pushing you to think in a different way and from different business angles.

Bojan Grabovac

Bojan Grabovac, Rotman MBA ’17

Similarly, in our interview with Guillaume Paradis, Manager of System Planning at Toronto Hydro and Bojan Grabovac’s (MBA ’18) employer, he emphasized the importance of the critical thinking skills gained through the MBA program:

I think the MBA program at Rotman is helping expand Bojan’s vision and is strengthening his thinking process. Since he started the program, Bojan has begun to look at the broader context of the business and not just the technology we work with at Toronto Hydro.

As an Electrical Engineer, one could fall into a tendency of focusing too much on the technical aspects of the job, and not enough on other variables that may be affecting our work and our overall business. However, through the MBA program, Bojan has had exposure to different industries and fields, ensuring he analyzes problems critically and within their broader context.

These employers also agree that the ability to think critically in their jobs has not only been evident through the way they tackle business issues, but also in the creative and innovative practices that these students have come up with in their projects at work.

In fact, Dennis McCatty said:

With Run, I’ve noticed a willingness to truly understand the nuts and bolts of our products and our issues in order to proactively create solutions and add value to the team. She doesn’t only focus on the ‘what’ of our business, but digs deeper to understand the ‘why’. For example, in her work for the Business Development team, if she notices a decline in sales, she looks into all the variables to understand what the real issue is that causes this decline.

Guillaume Paradis also commented on Bojan’s use of creative thinking in the workplace when he mentioned:

When analyzing how our business and projects are moving forward, Bojan has tapped into the knowledge he has gained at Rotman as well as the networks he has formed. In fact, we have recently started working on a project concerning Asset Management and Bojan has been instrumental in finding the right people to help us with this project. He has even connected with faculty members who have extensive experience in this field.

Overall, it is clear that the challenging content and stimulating environment provided by the MBA program at the Rotman School of Management gives an edge to the overall graduate business experience. Through their participation in the program, both Run and Bojan have been able to gain the skills and knowledge to power important solutions and changes in their work.


Can you see yourself in their shoes? Contact us today or sign up to attend one of our admissions events to learn more about the Morning & Evening MBA program at the Rotman School of Management.

Five top tips to accelerate your career

In a competitive job market, it takes serious focus, drive and leadership skills to take your career to the next level. Our dedicated Career Services help our Working Professional students structure their career plan, and position candidates to reach their goals. Rotman School of Management students are equipped with a toolkit to use and to take ownership of and manage their career management plan beyond their time at Rotman.

Annette Filler, Careers

Annette Filler,
Lead, Career Services,
Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance Programs

We asked Annette Filler, Lead, Career Services for Working Professionals for her Five top tips to accelerate your career.

Tip #1: Set goals
Set specific career goals and gain focus. What industry or function do you aspire to progress within? What would success look like?

Tip #2: Do your homework
Do your homework on the roles that interest you, and that you aspire to. Research the market, companies of interest, and job requirements.

Tip #3: Start building from Day 1
Be prepared to start building your Career Management Plan on Day 1 at Rotman – not when you pick up your graduation gown!

Tip #4: Invest time
Be ready to invest time. It takes time and energy to switch or progress careers. You’ll have put in the hours to learn about your new function, or sector. Network and target your pitch, resume and LinkedIn profile to appeal to recruiters and hiring managers.

Tip #5: Be accountable
Be accountable for your progress and eventual success. Use resources available to you, including Career Services at Rotman. Be sure to meet with your Career Coach.

Careers Services at the Rotman School of Management

The Career Services team is committed to working closely with students to refine career goals, help position and market candidates effectively and develop networks with people w who are in a position to help candidates achieve their goals. Career Services provides students with career support through a range of offerings:

Individual career counseling appointments in person or via telephone

  • Self-assessment
  • Independent job search strategy
  • Resume and cover letter review
  • Networking techniques
  • Interview preparation
  • Job offer and negotiation advice
  • Career advancement strategies (leverage your Master of Finance or Morning & Evening MBA within your organization)

Career Management workshops, webinars & speaker events

  • Defining your career objectives
  • Branding & positioning
  • Crafting your networking pitch
  • Developing a job search strategy
  • Interview preparation
  • Negotiating an offer

Online career resources

  • Tools & templates
  • Videos, webinars, podcasts
  • Career development guides

MFin 360 – Building strong leaders with the Master of Finance

Interview with Patricia Castanheiro, Vice President & Senior FX Trader, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ

As a part-time program for working professionals, the Master of Finance (MFin) at the Rotman School of Management is designed to help students reach their full potential while at work. This means that we want our students not only to prepare for their future careers, but also to gain the confidence and practical skills to support their current teams as finance leaders. Putting our program to the test, we’ve interviewed Patricia Castanheiro, Vice President & Senior FX Trader at the The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi to tell us a little bit about what it’s like to work with Sabrina Wu, MFin’17, who works as a trader in Patricia’s team.

Sabrina Wu, MFin '17, FRM, Money Market Trader, Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ

Sabrina Wu, MFin ’17, FRM, Money Market Trader, Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ

Thank you for taking the time to share your insights. Could you tell us a little bit about Sabrina’s current role and relationship to you at work?

Sabrina has been working with me at the Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ since 2013. She is currently a Money Market Trader and works on the trading floor reporting to me and another colleague. We have a mentor-mentee relationship and I’ve seen her grow tremendously since she started working with me.

What did you think when Sabrina informed you that she would be completing the MFin program while working fulltime in your company?

As part of our strategy to keep our talent motivated, we try to get our young professionals on the trading floor to work on each desk and expand their knowledge that way. We have a total of 8 traders and, as I mentioned before, Sabrina is currently on the Money Market side. Knowing that I am a big promoter of professional development, when deciding whether it was a good idea to start the MFin program, Sabrina came to me for advice and to find out if it would be possible to get funding from our organization. Right away, I told her she had my full support and lobbied to get our company on board as well.

Have you noticed any immediate impacts the program has had on Sabrina’s work? What would you say has been the added value so far?

I’ve definitely seen her analytical and research skills improve since she started the MFin. For example, we get our traders to write a weekly report providing their opinion on what’s happening in the market and Sabrina has been in charge of putting together the Money Market Weekly Report for quite some time now. I’ll be honest, when she first started it was not amazing; but 6 months down the line she got 100 times better! I’m certain it’s because of the program.

She’s certainly gained greater depth in her way of analyzing changes and variables in the market. Now, you can really tell that she observes and evaluates all the information she gathers through a critical lens in her classes at Rotman.

Would you say Sabrina’s experience as an MFin student has impacted the team when working collaboratively?

Sabrina has always been very collaborative; in fact, I would say that she’s extremely team oriented. Thanks to her participation in the MFin program, she expanded her network outside of the bank itself. We often share our thoughts on this matter, as she’ll bring her questions to me in order to decide strategically how to best expand her network.

When comparing the MFin program to other programs such as the MBA, do you think that the specialized content of the MFin program has been noticeable in Sabrina’s work? 

Considering the industry we’re in, the MFin is much more relevant to our work than other graduate programs in business. I have hired other young professionals that have completed an MBA or the CFA, and Sabrina’s MFin advantage is clear because she is able to apply what she learns directly into her job every day. For example, when she is working on a case study at Rotman, she is learning to respond to events that are happening in the market right now; so, it’s much more useful for us.

Have you noticed any knowledge or skill become a differentiating factor or competitive advantage for Sabrina since she started the MFin program?

Even though she was already well-spoken before joining the program, I still believe her communication skills have improved substantially. She also gained leadership skills and greater confidence from participating in group discussions and projects at school, which is incredibly valuable for her current job and future career.

The best thing is that this is not only evident at work, it also shows in her activities outside of the office. In fact, recently, she was selected to become one of the youngest board members of the YWCA! She is certainly becoming a well-rounded leader, which I can see having a great impact on her career.

How do you think this program will impact her career going forward?

She has a world of opportunities and, where she goes next, is up to her! At our bank, we have internal programs where you can move for a year to another country if there is an opening. Someone like Sabrina can take advantage of this opportunity and work in offices in places like NYC or Hong Kong. For now, she is working on finishing up her program at Rotman, but it’s safe to say that the MFin has opened many doors for her. I’m excited to see what the future has in store for her!


Looking for a graduate program that will charge your impact on your finance career? Visit our website or sign up to one of our admissions events and learn more about the Master of Finance  program.

Happy Holidays From The Rotman Team

With snow covered streets and festive lights everywhere, it can only mean one thing: the holidays are around the corner! As another year comes to a close at the Rotman School, we can celebrate this year’s achievements and look forward to milestones in the new year.  We’re excited to be celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Master of Finance program in 2017. As well, we’ve admitted our first students to the Morning & Evening MBA for the class of 2020.

After the holidays, we have a list of three things to consider as part of your new year’s resolution:

  1. Learn More About Our Programs For Working Professionals: At Rotman, we have four diverse degree programs that can help you advance in your career. Attend one of our admissions events in the new year for the Morning & Evening MBA, Executive MBA, Global Executive MBA or Master of Finance
  2. Read about our students’ experiences at Rotman: Our Working Professionals Blog gives you an exclusive insight into how our students are leveraging their Rotman degrees in their daily lives.
  3. Apply!: Are you ready to take the next step in your career? Apply to Rotman today!

Our offices are closed from December 21, 2016 to January 2, 2017. We look forward to seeing you in 2017.

ra-holiday-photo1

From all of us at Rotman’s Specialized Programs Recruitment and Admissions team, we wish you all happy holidays!

Why the Rotman Evening MBA? An incoming student shares

Our first Rotman Morning & Evening MBA application deadline for next year’s class recently came and went.  We’re thrilled by the diversity in industry and experience that we’re already seeing in this early crop of incoming students. Today we spoke with Max (Yimin) Ma, Category/Product Manager, Canada Computers, and one of our first incoming students for the new academic year.

Max Ma, Rotman Evening MBA 2020, Category/Product Manager, Canada Computers

Max Ma, Rotman Evening MBA 2020, Category/Product Manager, Canada Computers

Welcome to Rotman, Max. Can you tell us why you chose the Evening MBA program at Rotman?

In order to further advance my career and to increase my management knowledge, an MBA degree is essential. I also believe the Rotman MBA program is an excellent way to build a stronger professional network. I’m looking forward to meeting classmates with deep experience in different industries. That Rotman is the number one MBA School in Canada according to Financial Times also factored into my decision. I want to learn from the best!

The part-time nature of the Evening MBA program is definitely key to choosing Rotman. It’s important to me that I can continue to work, advance my career and support my family while fitting a Master’s degree into my schedule.

Did you receive any advice while you were researching MBA programs?

Yes, I consulted with a couple of my friends who either completed the MBA at Rotman or are currently taking the program. Their experiences were all positive. They were especially enthusiastic about the great class profiles, the friendships they made and the incredible quality of Rotman’s faculty. Their feedback helped make it an easy decision to apply to the Evening MBA at Rotman.

What do you hope to accomplish during your time at Rotman?

My short term career goal is to advance to become a Senior Product Manager in a technology company, during my time at Rotman. In the long-term, I hope to become a VP of project management, CEO of a technology company or to start my own business in the technology industry. The knowledge and networks that I hope to gain at Rotman will be central to accomplishing these goals.

What course are you most looking forward to taking?

I am looking forward to the entrepreneurship courses at Rotman as owning a brand and opening my own chain stores have always been my dreams. The management knowledge and networks at Rotman will be key to achieving these goals. I am particularly interested in branding courses which will be helpful not only for my current job as Product Manager, but also for my long term plans.


Interested to learn more about how Rotman’s Morning & Evening MBA programs can help meet your career goals? Visit our Rotman MBA website for more information, or check out our current Rotman Morning & Evening MBA class profile.

Where is he now? A Master of Finance alumnus shares 5 years after graduation

Interview with Yasir Mallick, MFin ’11, CPA

Yasir Mallick, MFin ’11, CPAThe Master of Finance (MFin) program at the Rotman School of Management strives for strong connections with our alumni network. Not only do we think it’s important to see how our former students are doing – we believe in paying it forward.

In this second blog post of our series, Where are they now?, we checked in with Yasir Mallick, MFin ’11, CPA, Director, Manager Selection and Portfolio Construction at the University of Toronto Asset Management Corp. (UTAM).

Thank you for speaking with us, Yasir. Tell us what it means to you and your career to be an MFin alumnus.
I applied for the MFin program after the 2008 financial crisis – I viewed it as a way to enhance my technical background given my work experience in the financial services sector. As an alumnus, I have definitely experienced direct educational and professional benefits from the program. Beyond these benefits, I am also proud of being an alumnus because I am part of a much broader community at the University of Toronto and at Rotman, a highly-regarded centre of knowledge in the Toronto financial community.

It’s been a while since you graduated; is there anything you miss from the program?
While I can’t say I miss attending classes and studying as a working professional, the program certainly reinforced my intellectual curiosity. During the program we were constantly exposed to interesting academic papers and empirical research that challenged our knowledge of finance. I have now replaced the intellectual stimulation of class with the intellectual challenges I face in my day to day role at UTAM.

Did the program give you a new appreciation for different area(s) of finance?
There were actually two areas: risk management and long-term portfolio management. These courses have provided a great foundation for my work ever since I graduated. I draw on this material daily to better understand new complexities and to execute my job.

Aside from that, what would you say have been the immediate impacts from completing your degree?
In my last year of the program, I was trying to make a career transition and I’d say that completing the MFin was critical in helping me achieve this goal. Not only did the program give me the necessary knowledge and technical skills to become a strong candidate for jobs in the industry, but it also gave me the confidence to apply to a more executive role in the pension fund management industry. I knew that, without the MFin, I would have likely been screened out by recruiters. I believe that, often, all you need is that first opportunity to meet with the hiring manager, and the MFin allowed me to get my foot in the door.

How are you involved with the MFin community as an alumnus? How do you foresee getting involved moving forward?
I’m still in touch with various professors, as I often connect with them when I see they have published new work in my area of interest. In fact, there’s a chance that I may be a guest lecturer for Rotman in the future.

In terms of the student body, I have also met with many prospective or current students to share my insights or tips as they consider their choices in the program and in their careers. I plan to continue my involvement in this capacity, as I believe it is important to share our experiences and help others.

Do you have any words of advice for future students or anyone thinking of applying now? 
Two things…

  1. Whatever course you choose to take, make sure that you are truly engaged with the material and passionate about it. As a working professional and part-time student you are pushing yourself to learn and work very hard. To keep yourself motivated, it’s important that you find the material useful and intellectually stimulating.
  1. On a more professional note, I certainly think that it’s important to have a loose outline of what you want to do with your career. However, keep an open mind! Be aware that this outline may not resemble anything close to where you end up, which sometimes, can also be a great thing.

Yasir Mallick, MFin ’11, CPA, has seen the benefits of being part of the MFin community. Since graduating 5 years ago he has been rewarded with two promotions and a job at a new organization. Intrigued by his career path? Visit our website or sign up to one of our admissions events and get ready to become part of the MFin community.

 

 

Annual Rotman Open House Draws Huge Interest: A Recap

With over 300 prospective students at the Rotman Open House on Sunday November 6, the event was nothing short of a great success. The event was an exciting opportunity for attendees to learn more about the 6 programs that Rotman has to offer through engaging sample classes and information sessions.

me-mba-networking

Morning and Evening MBA students are more than happy to answer questions from prospective applicants!

The programs that were represented at the fair were the Morning and Evening MBA, Full Time MBA, Executive MBA, Global Executive MBA, Master of Finance, and the Master of Financial Risk Management.

Making Connections at the Programs Fair

As guests began to arrive, they eagerly headed to the buzzing programs fair. Representatives for each of our Master’s programs provided information regarding admissions details and program structures. Current students were also more than happy to share their own Rotman experience. There was something new for everybody to discover about the school. One of our attendees commented that “I know I registered for one program of interest, but with such a wide range of programs that Rotman offers, it was hard to pick just one!”

open-house-programs-fair

The programs fair is in  full swing

A New Way to Think

Rotman’s Annual Open House formally kicked off with a keynote speech by Don Tapscott, CEO of The Tapscott Group, and one of the world’s leading authorities on the impact of technology on business and society. He also happens to be an Adjunct Professor here at the Rotman School of Management, and was ranked the 4th most influential management thinker in the world by Thinkers50.

tapscott-speaking

Don Tapscott kicking off the event with a keynote speech

He provided us with his thrilling insight into how blockchain is becoming an industry disruptor. Don concluded by challenging our audience, the future leaders in management, on how we can develop solutions to new technological, social and economic problems.

Mix and Match to Customize Your Day

Attendees mixed and matched the sessions that were of most interest to them. With a wide selection of 17 different sessions to attend, it was definitely not an easy choice to make.

Each session brought a unique perspective and experience for our prospective applicants. On top of the information sessions led by our recruiters about what applicants needed to get in and to succeed at Rotman, there were also unique interactive sessions. In our BMO Financial Group Finance Research and Trading Lab, prospective students had the opportunity to get involved in an exciting trading simulation where they made decisions under different scenarios. There were also a number of sample classes showcasing the world renowned faculty that teach at Rotman and their research strengths. Professor Brian Golden’s sample class on Strategic Management was energizing, overflowing and was even followed enthusiastically by an international audience via our live stream!

briam-golden-sample-class

Brian Golden presenting a sample class on Strategic Management

The Perfect Fit at Rotman

The Rotman Open House is not only a great event for prospective applicants to learn more information about the admissions process and to get their questions answered, it is also a chance to meet with our recruitment team to network and build a one-on-one relationship.

On behalf of the entire recruitment and admissions team, thank you to each and every individual who took the time to come out and learn about all the graduate programs that Rotman has to offer. We hope you had as much fun as we did!

To learn more about the Rotman School of Management, visit our website at www.rotman.utoronto.ca

Meet Emily Mancuso: New Rotman Master of Finance Assistant Director

Emily Mancuso, Assistant Director, Recruitment and Admissions, Master of Finance

Emily Mancuso, Assistant Director, Recruitment and Admissions, Master of Finance

We are delighted to introduce Emily Mancuso, our new Rotman Master of Finance Assistant Director of Recruitment and Admissions!

Thinking about how to accelerate your finance career? Emily will be able to answer your questions and help you find the right fit at Rotman. Please feel free to contact her directly with any questions about the Rotman Master of Finance program.

Here are a few fun facts about Emily:

  • She has a degree in Fine Arts and she enjoys printmaking in her free time
  • She has travelled to 60+ countries
  • She ran three half-marathons and is training to run a fourth race in spring 2017
  • She loves quiz nights and usually ranks as MVP in the music, arts and culture categories

The Time is Now – Prepare your application for the Morning & Evening MBA program!

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Now that we are in November, we are approaching our first deadline, November 20 for the Morning & Evening MBA program. Pro tip: the earlier you apply the better your chances are to become part of our next MBA class for working professionals. While the application process may appear daunting, we have compiled a number of tips that will help you prepare your application with ease. Read below and get started right away to secure your spot in Rotman’s  Morning & Evening MBA program.

Talk to the recruitment team. First and foremost, you need to make sure that this is the right program for you. One major advantage for the Morning & Evening MBA program is that it allows you to work and study towards your degree at the same time. Talking to a recruiter from the program can help you better understand how the Morning & Evening MBA program fits your career. In addition, the team can also shed some light on different aspects of the application and share tips with you to help you make sure to have satisfied all requirements. Our recruiters are eager to help, so don’t hesitate to contact them to set up a coffee chat.

Submit your documents early on. The application process requires you to fulfill a number of steps, some more time-consuming than others. Getting your transcripts and references is often relatively easy. As a result, we recommend to start by submitting these documents right away so that you can focus on other aspects of your application.

 Ace your GMAT. We know that the GMAT/GRE requirement can often cause anxiety in students thinking of applying to an MBA. That’s why at Rotman we help you prepare with our GMAT Review webinars. The next one is coming up on November 17th and you can sign up up today! Remember also that if you have completed all three levels of the CFA, you may be exempted from this requirement altogether.

When writing your essays, focus on content. To submit a complete application to our Morning & Evening MBA program you are required to complete two written essays. Remember when writing these essays to reflect back on your knowledge and experience and to focus on the content rather than the length of your piece. This is a way for the recruitment team to assess fit for the program; show them why you are meant to be part of the Morning & Evening MBA community.

These are just some of the tips we’ve collected over time from our experts, students and alumni. For more information on the program and the application process, contact us or sign up to one of our admissions events.

Ready to apply? Visit our website today and start your application today.

 

Where is he now? A Master of Finance alumnus shares 2 years after graduation

Where are they now? Where have their careers taken them since their days at Rotman? In our new series, Where are they now?, we seek out Rotman Master of Finance alumni and ask them to review their careers since graduation.

In this first blog post, Michael Hayes, MFin ’14, CFA, Director of Structuring and Credit Risk, BMO Corporate Finance took the time to share his wide ranging insights as an MFin alumni.

So, it’s been two years! How does it feel?
It feels great! I feel grounded in my career in finance since completing the Master of Finance (MFin); the program has a lot to do with my current success.

Michael Hayes MFin '14, CFA, Director of Structuring and Credit Risk , BMO Corporate Finance

Michael Hayes MFin ’14, CFA, Director of Structuring and Credit Risk, BMO Corporate Finance

Why did you choose to do the MFin instead of an MBA?
I’ve always been a big believer that credentials are ever more important in mature industries like banking. As I wanted to remain in this sector, I knew that I needed highly qualified credentials to my name in order to advance significantly and remove any potential future career barriers. I already had a Bachelors of Commerce and my CFA, but knew that it wouldn’t be enough.

When you realize that, you need to ask yourself: why am I going back to school? Is it to further develop skills necessary in my current field or to move industries and land a job in a different area?

If your answer is like mine, and you are looking to become an expert in your field, then your best bet is to stay in your job and complete the MFin. With my work experience and previous education, for me, it simply didn’t make sense to do an MBA. I was more interested in the technical skills and depth of finance knowledge that could best be obtained through the MFin.

What would you say have been the immediate impacts of being part of the MFin community?
When I first joined the MFin program, I was managing a book of commercial clients in Toronto as a Relationship Manager. I needed a change and starting the MFin program gave me the confidence to reach out to executive leaders and to talk about my career goals. This was a great decision, as just two months after joining the program I was promoted with an opportunity to work as an Associate in Investment & Corporate Banking in Chicago, USA.

Since then, I’ve advanced another two times within the same institution, with my most recent promotion in June 2016 when I became the Director of Structuring and Credit Risk for BMO’s Corporate Finance Division. I can certainly say that joining the Master of Finance was a catalyst for my first upward move.

What does it mean to you and your career to be an MFin alumni?
I am exceptionally proud not only of being a Rotman alumnus, but also of being a graduate of the MFin program. I take a lot of pride in being part of the highly-skilled and experienced community that is made up of MFin alumni. The Rotman MFin is a challenging program that admits students with work experience in finance. Many of my classmates already possessed designations such as the CFA or CPA.

What we learn and the networks that we build are extremely valuable to our professional and even our personal life.

How has this network impacted your life?
I have worked with some of my classmates at BMO, and there’ve been times when we leaned on each other for career advice. More importantly, some of my best friends today are from the MFin program.

You’ have to realize that in the program you not only meet people who share your passion for finance; you also meet people who share similar life experiences, whether it means being a working professional and part-time student, or having kids for the first time. In fact, aside from the intellectual stimulation present in the program, getting together with my classmates during our lunch break or after class is probably what I miss the most from the program.

How do you foresee getting involved with the MFin community as an alumni going forward?
I think it’s very important to stay connected. Every single graduate of the MFin program can give back and increase your scope. For example, working in a bank for quite sometime, I hadn’t been exposed to the perspectives of finance leaders who are non-bankers. During the MFin program, I met several classmates working in insurance companies and pension funds, which made me recognize the bigger world outside of banking.

As alumni, we have a responsibility to pay it forward and connect with current students looking to learn about our work and opportunities in our field.

What advice would you give to someone considering starting the program now?
First, recognize the importance of your community of classmates who will be your connections for life. Make connections with as many people as you can. As a tip, the easiest way to do that is to never sit in the same seat twice.

Second, remember that going back to school is a family decision. As a working professional and part-time student you’ll be sacrificing some of the time you spend with your family. Recognize their importance, and ensure they are on board with your plans.

Third, challenge the status quo. As a graduate student, you are here to learn and push the boundaries, so don’t just settle for what’s in the textbook. The best classes take place when students challenge the concepts reviewed in class and put them to the test.


Interested to learn more about what our students and alumni have to say about the program? Our upcoming Open House on November 6 is the perfect time to speak with students and alumni. Or, sign up for an upcoming admissions events.

6 Master’s Programs, 1 Open House

Rotman's Annual Open House. Join us November 6, 2016.

Rotman’s Annual Open House. Join us November 6, 2016.

Rotman’s Open House 2016 – mark your calendars!

Rotman’s Annual Open House takes place on Sunday, November 6, 2016. Check out all six of our Master’s programs to see which program is the right fit for you. It’s the perfect day! Attend an information session, sample a class, try your hand at a trading simulation, and meet current students and alumni.

MBA programs at Rotman

Specialized degrees at Rotman

Don Tapscott, CEO of the Tapscott Group and one of the world's leading authories on the impact of technology. He is also an Adjunct Processor at the Rotman School of Management.

Don Tapscott, CEO of the Tapscott Group and one of the world’s leading authorities on the impact of technology. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the Rotman School of Management.

Don Tapscott, keynote

Our exciting keynote speaker is Don Tapscott, CEO of The Tapscott Group. He is one of the world’s leading authorities on the impact of technology on business and society. He has authored over 15 books including Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything which has been translated into over 25 languages.

Don’s most recent and ambitious book was co-authored with his son, startup CEO and bitcoin governance expert Alex Tapscott. Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology Underlying Bitcoin is Changing Business, Money and the World was published in May 2016 and is, according to Harvard Business School’s Clay Christensen, “the book, literally, on how to survive and thrive in this next wave of technology-driven disruption” and, “likely to become one of the iconic books of our time.”

In 2015, Don became a member of the Order of Canada, and was ranked the 4th most influential management thinker in the world by Thinkers50. He is an Adjunct Professor at the Rotman School of Management, an Associate of the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, and Chancellor of Trent University in Ontario. Don is the Founder and Executive Director of the $4M Global Solution Networks investigation of multi-stakeholder models for global problem solving and governance.

It is hard to imagine anyone who has been more prolific, profound, and influential in explaining today’s technological revolutions and their impact on the world.

Register now to meet Don and our Master’s admissions teams on November 6, 2016 at Rotman’s Annual Open House.

The Fall 2017 Master’s programs application cycle is now open!

Start your application for one of Rotman’s Master’s programs for working professionals today!

Study while you accelerate your career. At the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, we have four flexible options for ambitious working professionals looking to boost their potential through part-time Master’s programs.

Whether you are thinking of making changes at work or expanding your professional network, now is the time to take charge of your career.

Applications are now open for all our Master’s programs for working professionals at Rotman. Take a look at each of our four Master’s programs for working professionals and get ready to apply to the program that is the right fit for you.

Master of Finance

Rotman Finance Lab

Do you:
• work in the financial industry?
• have solid technical skills?
• want to become an expert in the finance field?

Consider the Master of Finance. Attend one of our admissions events to learn more about the program or start your application today. The first application deadline is November 15, 2016.

Check out the profiles of some of our students and alumni.

Morning & Evening MBA

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Our Morning & Evening MBA program is perfect for those who have started their careers and want to broaden their leadership skills to strengthen their presence in the boardroom. Learn more about the program requirements through our admission events and start planning your submission for our first application deadline on November 20, 2016.

Executive MBA

rotman-sept-2012-650

At Rotman, we designed the One-Year Executive MBA program with senior industry leaders in mind. As an executive leader, this program will give you the tools to lead your team into success with confidence. Come to one of our information sessions to learn more or start preparing your application; the first submission deadline is on November 16, 2016.

Global Executive MBA

East Asia-Rotman18 months. 4 continents. Career Transformation.

In today’s global market it is imperative for leaders to understand the complexities of doing business across border. With Rotman’s Global Executive MBA program you’ll gain the practical skills and international experience to respond to the demands of today’s globalized world. The first application deadline is on November 16, 2016. Visit our website or attend one of our information sessions to learn more about the program.


Excited about the possibility of joining the Rotman community in 2017 but still unsure which program is right for you? Come to Rotman’s Open House on November 6 where you’ll be able to meet with alumni, current students and recruiters for all of our programs.

This is your chance to start building connections and learning all that there is to know to ensure you prepare a great application and start your part-time Master’s program in Fall 2017. Don’t wait, register now!

Bonus tip: the earlier you apply, the greater your chance of securing an entrance award.

MBA or MFin? Choosing the program that is right for you

MBA or MFin? Counting on our record of excellence from our cutting-edge Master’s programs, the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto is a key destination for ambitious working professionals looking to advance in their careers. Given the choice of top Master’s programs, the question often then comes down to: which program should I choose?

If you work in finance, you may be wondering whether the Rotman Morning & Evening MBA or the Master of Finance (MFin) program is right for you. We spoke to Rummy Gill and Emily Mancuso, our Assistant Directors of Recruitment for the respective programs, to put together key tips and considerations that will help you choose the program that is most appropriate for your career goals.

Rummy Gill, Assistant Director, Morning & Evening MBA, Recruitment & Admissions

Rummy Gill, Assistant Director, Morning & Evening MBA, Recruitment & Admissions

Consider your background. Have you worked in finance for some time? Or, did you major in finance in your undergrad? The Rotman MFin program requires a strong foundation in finance.  In fact, over 60% of students have already passed the CFA I, II or III examinations by the time they are admitted into the program.

On the other hand, if you are interested in working in finance but your educational background does not have a strong foundation in this field or you need to gain more work experience in the sector, an MBA may be a better option. In fact, completing the Morning & Evening MBA and majoring in Finance would be a great choice for someone looking to transition into finance from a different functional area.

Emily Mancuso, Assistant Director, Recruitment and Admissions, Master of Finance

Emily Mancuso, Assistant Director, Recruitment and Admissions, Master of Finance

What kind of leader do you want to be? If you’re considering both programs, then, it’s likely you already have a strong finance background. In this case, you’ll need to ask yourself whether the skills that you need to do your job better include gaining in-depth finance expertise or whether it may be skills associated with general management.

The MFin focuses on further developing the technical know-how and strategic thinking that is needed to become a leading finance practitioner; even people with a CFA will feel challenged in this program.

On the other hand, the Morning & Evening MBA is about broadening your perspective. It has classes in Innovation & entrepreneurship, business design, consulting & strategic management. Our  grad Ciara Wakita makes reference to this in her interview with us. People whose immediate or mid-career goals include attaining a senior leadership role within their organization, therefore, might find this program a better fit.

Consider whether you are looking for breadth or depth. While in the Morning & Evening MBA you can choose from various majors and have the chance to pick from over 115 elective courses, the MFin program is designed to provide you with in-depth finance knowledge. Most courses in the MFin are finance specific. This means that you, your peers and your professors can expect a certain level of foundational knowledge and skills from the class and can move faster through the course. This also means you’ll be learning from a richer depth of material.

Think of the network you’d like to build. Given that the MFin is planned as one cohort of 35 to 50 students all the way through the program, you’ll be able to tap into a strong tight-knit network of finance professionals. The expertise that comes with such a group will certainly impact class discussions as it will be centered around finance and will be guided by the perspective of finance practitioners.

ME-MBA-IntensiveWeek1
In the Morning & Evening MBA program, your peers might come with a different background, influencing a multi-faceted perspective and network. Think of it like this: if your career goals include staying in finance but moving companies, the MFin could help you meet the right people to connect you with these kinds of opportunities; instead, if you were hoping to explore positions in other functions, you might want to consider the MBA, where you’ll meet people from all backgrounds and function areas.

Ultimately you’ll have to ask yourself, what are your career goals for the next 5-10 years? We recommend that you do your research to understand positions you’d like to aspire to and what people in these roles have done to get there. Consider, speaking to your HR department to learn about the future of your industry and what qualifications may become necessary or give you an advantage in the job market.


Still not sure which one is right for you? Visit our website or contact us and we’ll help you choose the program that is right for you.

International Study Tour to Japan: Rotman Master of Finance

Sabrina Wu, MFin '17, FRM, Money Market Trader, Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ

Sabrina Wu, MFin ’17, FRM, Money Market Trader, Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ

Opportunities to expand your experience and network internationally beyond the classroom abound at Rotman. Sabrina Wu, a current student in our Master of Finance program for working professionals recently embarked on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Study Tour to Japan. Here is her account of her time on this once-in-a-lifetime experience:


In April this year, I was chosen as one of two Rotman students to join a delegation of Canadian graduate students on the Trans-Pacific-Partnership Study Tour to Japan. It was a unique opportunity presented by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan aimed to foster better understanding of Japanese society, history, politics and economy. The trip focused on issues related to the Trans-Pacific-Partnership and provided exposure to several industries in Japan including Biotechnology, Agriculture, Automotive and Textile.

Rotman - Japan International Study Tour

The eight-day trip was packed with activities that included company visits, courtesy calls to local governments, lectures, site-seeing and dining. During my stay there, I visited three Japanese cities – Tokyo, Nagoya, and Kyoto. I had the privilege of experiencing Japan’s world class bullet train ¬ the shinkansen – travelling at speeds of 240 to 320 kilometers per hour. The well-developed and well-maintained infrastructure in Japan was very impressive. Its extensive and modern road network consists of 1,152,207 kilometers of highways and 6,114 kilometers of expressways.

The visit to Toyota City, Aichi Prefecture, and in particular, the tour of Toyota’s manufacturing plant was the most interesting to me. As business students, we are familiar with “the Toyota Way” – kaizen (continuous improvement), jidoka (intelligent automation) and just-in-time system. Being able to see these management concepts in action was absolutely amazing!

Our learning of Japanese auto industry did not stop there. Contrary to the assumption that industrial cities such as Toyota City must have the highest carbon footprint in the country, the city in fact led the country in low-carbon infrastructure. A visit to Ecoful Town allowed us to take a peek at what a future green society can look like. In 2009, Toyota City was selected by the Japanese government to be a model city for the environment. It set high standards for carbon reduction through building smart grids, smart homes, and hydrogen fueling stations. Each smart home is equipped with a Home Energy Management System (HEMS) to monitor and allocate energy use efficiently.

Rotman - Japan International Study TourAll serious business aside, touring around the beautiful Imperial Palace, Meiji Shrine, Asakusa, Osu Kannon, and Kiyomizu Temple was a very unique experience. Kyoto, the cultural centre of Japan, has 1600 temples. Dining and sleeping on tatami, enjoying Yebisu beer at a Super Mario-themed pub, and sampling 10 different kinds of Sake were some of the best memories of Japan.

Rotman - Japan Study Tour

Thank you to Rotman for providing the opportunity. I am so grateful for it and I look forward to sharing this amazing experience with many others!


Interested in learning more about the Master of Finance program at Rotman? Visit our website or contact us for more information.

Theory in Practice Series: Master of Finance Part Three

What is the Rotman Master of Finance curriculum like? How do our working professional students and alumni take the theory they learn in the classroom and apply them to real situations in the workplace? In this final blog post of our 3-part series on the Rotman MFin curriculum, current student Jose Rivas gives his view of the program so far.


Jose Rivas, MFin '17, CPA, CGA, Senior Manager, Financial Planning & Analysis Business, Operations, National Diabetes Trust

Jose Rivas, MFin ’17, CPA, CGA, Senior Manager, Financial Planning & Analysis, Business Operations, National Diabetes Trust

Jose Rivas, MFin ’17, CPA, CGA
Current role: Senior Manager, Financial Planning & Analysis, National Diabetes Trust
Role entering the program: Senior Finance Manager, National Diabetes Trust

The Theory:

In the Forecasting Risks and Opportunities class taught by Professor Tom McCurdy, we covered advanced methods to forecast and to assess risks in our financial models. In the Advanced Accounting class taught by Associate Professor Ramy Elitzur, we covered the use of statistical regressions to derive meaningful forecasting relationships.

The Application:

Although I didn’t use the exact forecasting models taught in the forecasting risk course (a mean reversion model), the methodology to develop a forecast and to assess model risk was meaningful as I was able to use the same techniques to create a production forecasting model. I then used the advanced accounting course material to assess the adequacy of the model (autocorrelation tests as well as the evaluation of the model’s parameters).

The end result was the creation of a forecasting model with robust documentation. After presenting my findings to my CFO and senior operations management group, I got buy-in to roll out, and to use it to forecast production, which was a deficient process in the past. Through this, we have drastically improved guidance and product planning nationally.

Breadth of Finance Knowledge

In terms of general capital markets knowledge, most people with my background and level of seniority have a soft understanding of capital markets. The Analysis of Fixed Income Markets class taught by Associate Professor Fotini Tolias gave me a much better understanding of debt products and their origination.

Certainly, the context of this course is more relevant to those who work for large firms. However, in gaining this type of knowledge, I have been able to open up conversations with senior management surrounding access to mid-markets, and to understand what financial institutions seek out of these deals.

Finance Career Bridge

All in all, my take on the Rotman MFin program is that it is not only about specific knowledge – it is also about our ability to expand what we’ve learned in creative applications beyond the classroom. The Rotman MFin program is excellent for those with a background similar to mine who want to change up their finance career path as the program truly advances your finance knowledge and bridges your knowledge or skill set gaps.


Interested to see how the Rotman Master of Finance program for working professionals can help you master your finance career in just 20-months? Learn more about the Rotman MFin program on our website, or contact us to see if the program is right for you.

Theory in Practice Series: Master of Finance Part Two

Di Shan, MFin '17, CPA, CMA, Senior Financial Analyst, Canadian Tire Corporation

Di Shan, MFin ’17, CPA, CMA, Senior Financial Analyst, Canadian Tire

Make an immediate impact at work and on your finance career. According to our working professional students, the ability to practically apply the latest finance theories learned in the classroom is one of Rotman’s Master of Finance program’s key benefits.

Half way into the 20-month Rotman MFin program, current MFin student Di Shan shares her experiences so far – the knowledge she has gained, and how she applies this to her work daily. This is the second blog post in a series of three posts about the Rotman MFin curriculum.


Di Shan, MFin ’17, CPA, CMA
Current role: Senior Financial Analyst, Canadian Tire Corporation
Role entering the program: Financial Analyst, Canadian Tire Corporation

At Canadian Tire, I work in the corporate finance area providing financial support and management consulting to the senior management of our business teams.

The six courses that we’ve taken so far in the first half of the Rotman MFin program covered a broad range of topics in finance. The Foundation of Finance and Macroeconomics courses provided a great foundation for the theories and models required to understand and analyze market movements. I was able to very quickly apply what we learned in class. I linked discoveries from our weekly news article assignments to my weekly meetings with business clients; I would provide relevant market updates such as interest rate and exchange rate movements, and engage in in-depth conversation with senior leaders.

The Forecasting Risks & Opportunities course provided many practical tools and models that I was able to use in my financial planning work where I enhanced my existing forecasting models with regressions and simulations. The Financial Analysis course provided new perspectives to analyzing and valuing a company; the experience gained from working on the final project of valuing and comparing two firms was highly valuable. Applying the same procedures, and focusing more on the quality of financial disclosure, I was able to link back to corporate strategies when performing analysis on competitors at work.


Are you a working professional in finance? Have a look at the Rotman Master of Finance curriculum and see if the program is right for you. Contact us if you have any questions or to meet us for a coffee chat.

Theory in Practice Series: Master of Finance

MFin Theory in Practice: Hank Liu, Rotman MFin '17, Senior Performance Analyst, Manulife Asset Management

Hank Liu, MFin ’17, CPA, CGA, CFA II Candidate, Client On-boarding Manager, Manulife Asset Management

The latest financial theories with direct practical applications – this is what students can expect with the Master of Finance program at the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto. Every day, our globally renowned faculty and practitioners translate their latest research and experience in the finance field into the classroom.

Over 20-months, the Rotman MFin curriculum covers in-depth topics such as Risk Management and Financial Institutions, Applications of Derivative Products, Investment Banking, Applied Portfolio Management and more. In this first of a series of three blog posts on the Rotman MFin curriculum, current MFin student Hank Liu shares his experiences in a few of the courses to date, and what this means in his everyday work, and for his career.


Hank Liu, MFin ’17, CPA, CGA, CFA II Candidate
Current role: Client On-boarding Manager, Manulife Asset Management
Role entering the program: Senior Analyst, Performance Measurement and Attribution, Manulife Asset Management

Professor Laurence Booth‘s Foundations of Finance course requires me to follow the market closely on a daily basis. Through this, I know more about what is happening around in the financial world, and this helps me better understand and predict our portfolio manager’s strategy. For instance, by closely following world news, I know when the U.S. treasury rate is expected to go up and would expect our U.S. fixed income PM to reduce our exposure to long duration securities.

Associate Professor Fotini Tolias‘ Analysis of Fixed Income Markets course is directly applicable to my work. I developed a much deeper understanding on all types of fixed income products. Part of my work is to analyze the performance, analytics, and attribution for our fixed income portfolios. By learning how to calculate average life, yield, duration, convexity, I developed an independent calculation tool/model for our team, and if there were any discrepancies on those characteristics, I have the confidence to validate them. Another example: there were some data issues with a “fix-to-floating” security held in our portfolio. As we covered it in class, I quickly figured out what caused the issues and suggested how to fix them.

Most importantly, these incredible courses offered by MFin program sharpened my expertise in financial world, and taught me how to speak the same language as professionals in other areas of finance. I now have a much better understanding of how other teams operate. For example, after taking the Forecasting Risks and Opportunities course taught by Professor Tom McCurdy, I am able discuss with the variable annuity team about their hedging strategies. The Corporate Finance and Valuation course taught by Adjunct Professor Heather-Anne Irwin was helpful for me to discuss the models developed by our finance project team.

I’m taking the MFin program at just “The Right Time”. As I am transitioning from accounting to investments, the MFin program is preparing me well for all the challenges that I will encounter in the future. Since I’m taking the MFin program as a working professional with a few years of work experience, rather than as a fresh undergraduate, I have a clear sense on “why I am taking the program”, “what I expect from the program”, and “what my plan is after the program”.


Interested in exploring the Rotman Master of Finance curriculum or want to see if the program is right for your finance career? Visit our Rotman MFin website or contact us for a chat.

Get It Done – Start Your Morning or Evening MBA Application

Do you want to start your Morning or Evening MBA at Rotman this September? Time is running out – get to it! Morning MBA 2017 student, Bojan Grabovac, spoke to us about his experience as a late applicant and came up with some useful tips for you to complete your application in time. Get started so you can have a chance to be the new addition to the Morning & Evening MBA class of 2018.

Hello Bojan! Thanks for taking time to speak to us.

As we are reaching the tail-end of application season, we want to hear about your experience as an applicant and how you managed to complete the application in just one month.

One of the reasons for my late application last year was that I took my time to figure out if the program was right for me. I was already convinced that I wanted to pursue an MBA, but I wanted to be absolutely confident that Rotman’s Morning MBA was the right fit for me. During the year I took my time getting to know the school, joining class visits, and researching everything the program had to offer so that I could make an informed decision.

Bojan Grabovac, Rotman Morning MBA '17

Bojan Grabovac, Rotman Morning MBA ’17

Applying at the later stages though meant that I had less time to prepare my application. However, at least for me, I needed the time pressure to just get it done. I think having just a month to complete the application gave me the necessary urgency to organize myself. There was still time to complete the GMAT after the application is submitted. Rotman’s admissions team was also amazing at turning around and giving me feedback — learning whether I’ve been accepted or not.

Complete your Morning & Evening MBA Application

Were you concerned that your application would be part of a final round of admissions?

I wasn’t concerned enough to dissuade me from applying. Obviously, I had some concerns about whether the class was full or whether there’d be any awards left. But I already knew I wanted to do an MBA and I wanted to get it as soon as possible. I had to think positively and had to remind myself that if I got in, then I’d be a year ahead in terms of reaching my goals.

How did you manage? Were there any specific strategies that helped you complete the application successfully and on time?

I knew I only had one month, so my first step was to get simpler items out of the way. For example, I wanted to get the transcripts and references done as fast as possible. This way, I’d have more time to focus on more challenging aspects of the application.

For the GMAT, Rotman offers useful GMAT events like mock exams, verbal and math refreshers that can help you prepare for the exam and get a good score.* I took advantage of the free online exams to understand where I stood and where my weaknesses were. Once I had a clear picture of my weak spots, I started focusing on practicing and preparing for these areas so that I could improve my score on the GMAT and my chances of getting in the program. Keep in mind that you are not required to complete the GMAT before submitting your application, you can do so after, which gives you a little extra time to prepare.

Do you have any pieces of advice for other applicants in a similar situation?

First, I’d suggest to try to eliminate all speculation and talk to the recruitment team. They are always ready to help. Not only can they answer burning questions, but they can also help arrange class visits so you can see for yourself whether you can see yourself as a student at Rotman, and offer help with a GMAT course.

Also, if you are sure that you want to do an MBA, don’t delay! The faster you get it done, the more time you’ll have to reap the benefits of this degree. I know for myself, once I made the decision I wanted to get it done as soon as possible. There is simply no benefit to waiting another year.


Ready to apply? Have questions? Contact us, visit our Morning & Evening MBA website and start your application today!

* Check our admissions events schedule often to see upcoming GMAT-related and other events.

Master of Finance: June 11-13, 2016 in review

What a busy couple of weeks at Rotman for our recently graduated Master of Finance class of 2016 and current MFin students! More than just in the classroom, our alumni, students, faculty and staff rubbed shoulders (and noisemakers) outside of school.

On June 11, 2016, we had our third annual friendly soccer match with Schulich’s and Smith’s MFin classes. Trophy goes to Smith this year. Well played!

The day after on June 12, we had our pre-convocation MFin reception where valedictorian Morgan Pampe gave a rousing and at times, emotional retrospective of the class over the past 20 months.

Finally, the big day! On June 13, the MFin class of 2016 officially became Rotman alumni.

Check out the photos below.

2016 Master of Finance Soccer Match

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Rotman Master of Finance Class of 2016 Convocation Reception

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Rotman Master of Finance Class of 2016 Convocation

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CFA or MFin? Why not both?

If you are currently studying for your CFA Level III exam or are a charterholder, you may  wonder if you should consider completing a Master of Finance (MFin). To give you some perspective, we spoke to a number of our Rotman MFin grads who are also charterholders.

Tracy Chong, MFin ’16, CFA

Tracy Chong, MFin ’17, CFA

“While Rotman’s Master of Finance and the CFA both cover a wide range of finance topics, the MFin explores each area in much greater detail while the CFA is more focused on portfolio management.” Tracy Chong, CFA, MFin ‘17.

As Tracy points out, becoming a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) is key to certain positions within the financial sector, including portfolio management. However, the MFin will prepare you to go even further in your career. Having both is definitely an advantage, if you want to be a finance leader.

Michael Da Silva, MFin ’16, CFA

Michael Da Silva, MFin, CFA

Another recent grad, Michael Da Silva, CFA, MFin ’16, expands on this:

“Through the MFin program, you attain the technical skills needed to get an edge in any finance career—including investment banking, which is a challenging field to break into. In Heather-Anne Irwin’s Investment Banking course, you learn what it takes to be an investment banker when you produce your own M&A deal and pitch it to a panel of industry professionals.”

Omar Karim, MFin ’17, CFA

Omar Karim, MFin ’17, CFA

The practical skills learned through the MFin curriculum and the practical experience of your faculty and peers will help you take the theoretical knowledge gained during your CFA and apply it in your day-to-day. As Omar Karim, CFA, MFin ’17 says, “It is incredibly fulfilling to learn about bond theories in class one day and then apply them directly on the sales and trading floor the next day.”

Ashley Warburton, MFin ’17, CFA

Ashley Warburton, MFin ’17, CFA

Ashley Warburton, CFA, MFin ‘17 and Francois du Toit, CFA, MFin ‘16 both agreed that learning from practically-minded faculty was invaluable when exploring current events in financial markets. Ashley remembers, for example, learning about coco bonds in Fotini Tolias’ class and seeing them affect European banks balance sheets, which resulted in changes in their stock price this past February.

Ultimately, while the CFA may give you key foundational concepts to understand these events, it is in the MFin that you’ll get the deeper insights to interpret and understand the complex set of variables that impacted turns in financial markets.

Francois du Toit, MFin '16 , CFA

Francois du Toit, MFin, CFA

Without a doubt, together the CFA and the MFin will make you a strong candidate in the financial sector. In addition, if you are currently completing the CFA Level III exam and are thinking of applying to the MFin, you have the advantage of receiving a GMAT exemption, as you can automatically be considered for a conditional offer.


What are you waiting for? Put your CFA knowledge to the test, and contact us or apply now to become our next MFin candidate.

Rising Up with Rotman’s Morning MBA

Congratulations to the Rotman Morning & Evening MBA Class of 2016 on convocation day! After 32 months of hard and rewarding work, our Rotman MBA class of 2016 is graduating today and ready to expand their impact globally. It’s the perfect day to reflect on the overall MBA experience. We spoke to Ciara Wakita, about her time in the Morning MBA for working professionals.

Ciara Wakita, Rotman Morning MBA ' 17

Ciara Wakita, MBA ‘ 16

Congratulations on your graduation, Ciara! You must be thrilled to have arrived to the finish line. Looking back do you remember why you chose to complete the Morning MBA at Rotman?

Thank you. It has definitely been a fulfilling time of my life!

When I decided to enrol in an MBA program, I knew that I would do it part-time. Taking time away from my career was simply not an option for me. I ended up choosing Rotman because of its reputation in the financial services sector and because U of T is an internationally renowned school.

Once I chose Rotman, I had to decide between the morning or evening program. Because I wanted to keep an active social life and play sports in the evenings, waking up earlier two mornings a week made my days hyper-productive. After my 7 to 9 am class, I would still be able to get to work in time and put in a full day.

What would you say is your favourite aspect of the program?

I’d say it’s the camaraderie of the entire Rotman community. While you make a natural bond with people in your cohort in the first half of the program, I also made friends when I went into my electives in the second half of the program. I met amazing people from other cohorts. I didn’t the camaraderie, but there is just a very common understanding amongst everyone.

Ciara open house

Ciara Wakita (Morning MBA 2016) at our 2015 Rotman Open House

Did you develop a strong network with your friends and faculty during the program? How was this beneficial?

Yes. I feel that when you are in the program, you become part of a league of professionals who all have a common understanding about what you know. You are surrounded by super smart and overachieving people and it’s cool to talk about ideas. I have three close friends in the program who are what I call my ‘board of directors’. When I need to make a professional (or personal) decision, I go to them for guidance.

How has attending the Rotman school and completing the Morning MBA impacted your career so far?

Almost everyone in my cohort switched either jobs or roles while in the program. Even I switched roles within the same company. Just by being part of the program you become a hotter commodity in the labour market.

What piece of advice could you give new incoming students and prospects for the Morning MBA at Rotman?

Do things your way. There are so many events and clubs at Rotman, it can be overwhelming at first! Don’t feel like you need to do everything. Join clubs and events that matter to you; be selective. Personally, I didn’t get involved in student life as much as others. I don’t feel that I missed out on anything. I did what worked for me.

Congratulations again and thank you for your reflections, Ciara!


If you’re interested to learn more about the Morning MBA, contact us, visit our website or sign up for an admissions event. We’d love to hear from you. 

 

Rotman Master of Finance: A Wealth of Surprises

Today is convocation day for the Rotman Master of Finance Class of 2016! Congratulations. Our newly graduated Rotman MFin Class of 2016 is now armed with a new way to think about finance and management that will transform their careers as finance leaders.

Morgan Pampe, MFin ’16, CFA is the class of 2016’s valedictorian. He was drawn to the program for career reasons. What came as a welcome surprise was the wealth of experiences that Rotman makes possible: the professors, the case competitions, the speaker series, and most of all, the friendships. Here is a conversation we recently had with him.

Morgan Pampe, MFin '17, CFA

Morgan Pampe, MFin ’17, CFA

How does it feel to be finally done?

It’s nice to have a lot more free time. And since the weather has improved, it’s doubly uplifting. However, I do miss coming back to Rotman because I made so many great friends here.

Something people don’t appreciate or understand about the Master of Finance program is the closeness of the friendships you form here. As the program is so intensive, you end up spending a lot of your free time at the School, working on challenges together. It’s like when you’re younger and you’re doing everything together at the cabin, or going on a canoe trip.  I really enjoyed that aspect, because I was a camper and I like that idea of closely bonding with people.

That was something you didn’t expect.

Like most people, I was drawn to the program for career reasons. With regards to that, it was the right choice. But I had no idea of how much I’d like everyone in class. There are people from all sorts of different backgrounds, in terms of the country they’re from, or their professional experience or education. You get great perspective on many different things. You’re all going through the same process of working and doing school, so there’s a lot of empathy. People are smart and ambitious, and there’s also a sense that we’re all in it together.

Aside from the friendships you made, what’s the biggest take away from your experience?

I couldn’t imagine how smart the professors would be. I’d learn something in, let’s say, John Hull’s or Peter Christoffersen’s class, and the next day I would be doing it at work and showing people. I would get some blank stares or head nods, and they’d be, “That’s good.  We’ve never done that before. Keep doing that.”  I got to see how worthwhile the program is in real time.

Coming out as a graduate, you feel confident in talking to anybody about their job or their line of business. If you don’t understand it, you know how to find out. The program gives you the tools and confidence to dig deeper.

 If you were to talk to someone just entering the program, what advice would you give?

I would point out that Rotman has so much to offer. The professors are great. There’s a wonderful stream of smart people and ideas and knowledge that flow through here. There’s an incredible speaker series that brings in heads of state, professionals and industry leaders to come and share their ideas.  There’s an incredible alumni network, and always someone willing to sit down and talk to you.

That said, the opportunity is fleeting. Time is passing. It’s up to you to have the discipline to constantly try to get as much out of it as possible.  It’s like a wet towel and you need to just squeeze as much as you can out.  How hard you’re willing to do that is in your hands.

Edited. Full conversation with Morgan can be found here.


Are you interested in investing in your career with the Rotman MFin? Contact us or visit our website for more information. We’d love to hear from you.