Tag Archives: Rotman Finance Lab

Where is he now? A Master of Finance alumnus shares his experience 1 year after graduation

The Master of Finance (MFin) at the Rotman School of Management is designed to develop the next generation of finance leaders. Our graduates are examples of our delivered promise. We interviewed Tony Chan, MFin ’15 currently working as an associate of Global Corporate Securities for CPP Investment Board. Here is what he had to say:

Tony Chan, MFin ’15

Hello Tony! Thank you for sharing your experience as a student and alumnus with us.

It hasn’t been that long since you graduated, how did it feel in your second year as an alumnus not to have to go back to school?

To be honest, it felt weird! I was really busy while I was in school and I got used to it. Having to go to work and school at the same time, I had developed a routine to help me keep up with the work and also maintain an active social life. But, now that I am done, I feel as if I’m slacking. So much so that I decided to join recreational classes and activities such as cooking, badminton, volleyball and Frisbee.

What does it mean to you and your career to be an alumnus of the MFin program?

It’s hard to say at this point because it’s only been a year since I graduated, but I can say that I’m still connected with friends from the MFin program. It feels good to know that I’m still part of the Rotman community and that I have met so many people with common interest and life experiences, who are now some of my best friends.

Did the program give you a new appreciation for a different area(s) of finance?

Yes, the curriculum covered a lot of important basis and some foundational concepts that weren’t as familiar to me. This also sparked new interests. For example, before joining the MFin program I didn’t know a whole lot about investment banking and wasn’t sure if I would find it interesting. However, once I joined the program and took the investment banking course I learned to really enjoy the subject. I was surprise that I was interested in this content, but after taking the course everything in finance makes more sense to me.

How did the program expand your professional network?

One of the major benefits of joining the MFin program was the possibility of expanding my network. As a graduate, today,  I can definitively say it helped me make more connections. Think about it: because you are studying alongside finance experts and working professionals in some of the major financial institutions in Canada, you have a chance to make extremely good connections.

In today’s labour market there is a lot of emphasis on networking, and many people choose to attend conferences and events to meet people in their field. This is good, but it is definitely a lot better when you are able to get to know these people over two years of course work. After all, if you are part of the same team project, they’ll get to know how you really work and be able to vouch for you.

How have the relationships you’ve made during your program impact your year since the graduation?

I made some great friends during my time as an MFin student. I think this is mainly because we share so much in common. Before joining the program, I only had a small group of friends with whom I could actually discuss politics, finance and our careers. Thanks to my time at Rotman, I now have a really close group of friends with whom I can engage in these kinds of conversations. My friends from the program are also good people to go to for professional advice, and I think that is invaluable.

Have you been able to make a career switch or receive a promotion because of the MFin?

I did change careers during the program. What I can say with certainty is that graduating from the MFin program definitely made me a more confident professional. Ultimately, I think this will positively impact my career going forward.

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

I think everyone considering applying to a Master’s program should think of their own criteria for doing so. We all come with different experience and career goals and it is important to stay true to yourself. I would also urge applicants to do their research! They should speak with faculty members, the recruitment team and current students to really understand what the program is like and how it can benefit their careers.

 Ready to learn more about the MFin program? Visit our website or sign up to one of our admissions event and start preparing to become a finance leader.

 

 

 

 

 

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

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.

Passionate about a career in finance? This program is designed for you.

Passionate about finance and accelerating your career? The Master of Finance at the Rotman School of Management may be the perfect program for you. In our latest video, world renowned Professors of Finance John Hull and Peter Christoffersen give compelling reasons why this program will enrich your professional life.

The Rotman Master of Finance is designed for students who are already working in the financial industry. “The Rotman Master of Finance offers a deep focus on a broad set of finance topics, where the CFA is quite centered on money management. The learning style is very different as well,” says Lindsay Sinclair, CFA, an MFin alumna and Vice-President, Rates Sales at RBC Capital Markets. The depth and breadth of our curriculum will give you the finance fluency to make direct impact in your boardroom and your career.

This program will impact your career in two main ways:

First, by studying at the top finance school in Canada, you’ll have access to state of the art resources such as our finance lab and to world-class finance faculty strongly connected to industry. Often, the best schools will have ties with industry, creating a reciprocal feed of input and ideas. This is the case with Stanford and Silicon Valley, and it is also the case with Rotman and the financial industry in Toronto.

Second, this program only admits one cohort per year, which means that you’ll be taking courses with the same people and at the same time. This will allow you to build strong professional and personal relationships that will continue well beyond the duration of the program. At Rotman we have a highly active and engaged Master of Finance alumni network, often participating in events together with our current students. In this community you’ll share study notes, tips and advice and you’ll be able to grow together as professionals by sharing ideas and challenging each other to think.

There is simply no question that this program can help you achieve your goal to become a future finance leader.

Want to learn more about the program? Contact us or attend one of our upcoming events.

Energized to meet our prospective new students! Open House 2015 Recap

Rotman Open House 2015Rotman’s annual Open House on Saturday, October 17, 2015 was an energizing success! It is the Rotman School of Management’s biggest annual recruiting event where prospective students can get a feel of the quality of education at U of T, and also get a chance to chat with current students, alumni, faculty and recruiting and admissions staff to see which master’s program is the right fit.

Rotman Morning & Evening MBA students, alumni and staff ready to greet our Open House visitors.

Rotman Morning & Evening MBA students, alumni and staff ready to greet our Open House visitors.

6 programs were on showcase including the Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance for working professionals, plus our newest graduate program, Master of Financial Risk Management.

The school was already buzzing at the earliest part of the Open House during our Programs Fair. Student ambassadors, alumni and staff from each of the programs were on hand to give perspective and information. Prospective students also had a chance to tour the Rotman building.

Michael Hyatt on the set of Next Gen Den.

Michael Hyatt on the set of Next Gen Den.

Michael Hyatt, our keynote from the Next Gen Den, immediately followed with a dynamic presentation on Opportunity.

Rotman's Professor Peter ChristoffersenRotman's Professor Glen WhyteThe main events of Rotman’s annual Open House took place thereafter. There were information sessions on each of the master’s programs; sample classes like Professor Peter Christoffersen‘s class on New Techniques for Managing Market Risk; Professor Glen Whyte‘s case study illustrating Effective Negotiating ; round table discussions on women in business, and more sessions that truly gave a flavour of all that is available to students of the Rotman School of Management.

If you missed the Open House, there are still opportunities for you to connect with our admissions staff, and to find our more about the programs that interest you. Visit our website and keep an eye out for our next Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance admission events. We look forward to meeting you at one of our upcoming events!

6 Master’s programs to check out at Rotman’s Annual Open House

Rotman's Annual Open House. Join us October 17, 2015.

Rotman’s Annual Open House. Join us October 17, 2015.

Rotman’s Annual Open House is fast approaching! Come explore what Rotman has to offer by attending an information session, sampling a class, trying out our BMO Financial Group Finance and Trading Lab, and meeting current students and alumni.

This year, 6 Rotman Master’s programs will be showcased:

Make the most of it by planning your day in advance using the online schedule.

Michael Hyatt on the set of Next Gen Den.

Michael Hyatt on the set of Next Gen Den.

Latest news! Our keynote speaker is Michael Hyatt. He became a self-made millionaire at just 25, when he built two highly successful tech firms valued in the hundreds of millions. Today, he ranks as one of Canada’s top entrepreneurs, is a celebrated “Dragon” on CBC’s new online sensation Next Gen Den, and is a weekly Business Commentator on CBC News Network. Michael is also a Founding Partner at the Rotman School of Management Creative Destruction Lab, and on the CEO Board of Advisors at Georgian Partners. He is a finalist in Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award, a recipient of the Top 40 Under 40™ Award and chairs his family’s charitable foundation.

Our Master’s admissions teams will be in attendance and available to answer any questions about our programs, the School, and application processes.

Register now and we’ll see you on October 17 at Rotman’s Annual Open House.

In the spotlight: Thaksa Sethukavalan, CPA, CA, Auditor & Rotman MFin Candidate

Thaksa Sethukavalan, CPA, CA, Auditor, Office of the Auditor General of Ontario. Rotman MFin candidate and Master of Finance Women’s Excellence Entrance Award Recipient.

Thaksa Sethukavalan, CPA, CA, Auditor, Office of the Auditor General of Ontario. Rotman MFin candidate and Master of Finance Women’s Excellence Entrance Award Recipient.

We’re now deep into building our Master of Finance 2017 class. The calibre of applicants are impressive professionally and are remarkable in the clarity of their drive to succeed.

In this blog post, we’re highlighting another recipient of the Master of Finance Women’s Excellence Entrance Award. Congratulations to Thaksa Sethukavalan, CPA, CA who will start the program this September.

How did you hear about the Rotman MFin?

Before applying to the MFin program, I had spent several months researching graduate business programs in Toronto. I had been feeling the itch to go back to school for some time by that point, but I wasn’t initially sure which graduate degree was right for me. Originally, I was leaning towards an MBA, but through my research I came across the MFin program. It appealed to me a lot more as I read more and more about the program.

Can you tell us a bit more about your professional background as you certainly are a unique candidate for the MFin program.

My professional background is actually in accounting and audit. After university, I spent three years working at Deloitte LLP in its audit practice and earned my Chartered Accountant designation with the firm. My focus was on financial statement audits. I can honestly say that I learned a lot while I was there, and was able to work on a number of interesting and complex audit engagements. At present I work for the Auditor General of Ontario, where my focus is on value-for-money audits of the provincial government and its ministries. It is very interesting work!

What is your favourite thing about finance?

My favourite thing about finance is the fact that finance itself is such a broad and wide-ranging topic. There are so many different specializations or focus areas that an individual could choose to get into or pursue, based on their own personal interests. I love the fact that you can never really be done learning about finance – there is always something new that an individual can choose to understand.

What made you decide to apply to the MFin?

As a Chartered Accountant, I’m always looking for ways to differentiate myself from my peers. With the recent merger of all the Canadian accounting designations into the CPA designation, I really felt like I needed a graduate degree to help set myself apart from other CPAs and to move into more upper management type roles. I’ve also always had an interest in finance in particular, and having already come from an accounting and audit background, it made more sense for me to complete a Master of Finance degree over an MBA. I also enjoy challenges and truly love to learn – I really felt as though the Master of Finance degree would help me become a better, stronger and more well-rounded business professional than any other type of graduate degree.

Did you attend any MFin events that helped you to make your decision?

I was fortunate to attend quite a few MFin events that helped me make my decision. The Rotman information session was able to provide me with some background information on the program, the curriculum and the workload involved with the MFin degree. There were some past and current students that attended the event and I was able to speak to them about their experiences with the program. I was also able to attend some Rotman networking events (the MFin market simulation sample class as well as the TD & Rotman Women @ Work Symposium) which really gave me a good feel for the culture and network at Rotman. I was also fortunate enough to be able to sit in on a Wednesday evening class and speak to some current students who spoke highly of the program, which also helped me make my decision to pursue an MFin degree.

Additionally, Alexandra MacKay, the Academic Director of the Master of Finance program, was kind enough to put me in contact with several Chartered Accountants who had already completed the program or were in the process of completing it. All of them had very good things to say about the program, the material and courses, as well as the quality of professors that taught in the program. They all told me it was a very challenging program, but well worth their time and effort, which is something that really resonated with me.

What made you decide to accept your offer of admission?

For me, there were several factors that helped guide me to accept my Rotman MFin offer. First and foremost, having sat in an MFin class and having spoken to several past and current students, I was really impressed by the material being taught and what past and current students had to say about the program. No matter who I spoke to, everyone spoke highly about the program, the curriculum and the professors, which really impressed me. I was also impressed by the close-knit network at Rotman and the high calibre of graduates from the program. Everyone I spoke to was really eager to help answer my questions about the program, which was very appealing to me. I decided that I want to a part of this community. Also, being awarded with the Master of Finance Women’s Excellence Scholarship was a very pleasant surprise and helped seal the deal.

Do you have any advice for students thinking of applying to the MFin program?

The only piece of advice I would have to give is to do your research. The MFin is an incredible program, but it’s really important to make an assessment as to whether the program is the right fit for you at your stage in your career. I recommend attending information sessions and Rotman networking sessions to see if you could benefit from the program. I also recommend getting in touch with MFin alumni and current students and talking to them about how they found the program. Doing this will help ensure you make an informed decision about pursuing an MFin degree.

Final question: what are you most looking forward to in the program?

Other than bettering my understanding of finance, I am really looking forward to meeting and networking with my future classmates. I have heard great things about the calibre of students that are admitted into the program, so I look forward to learning and working with them.


Our next Rotman Master of Finance application deadline to start September 2015 is fast approaching on April 1, 2015. If you have any questions about the program or the application, please contact us. We would be pleased to help.

In His Own Words: Professor Tom McCurdy, Founder & Director of the Rotman Finance Lab

In this blog post the Founder and Director of the Finance Lab, Professor of Finance Tom McCurdy, talks about the BMO Financial Group Finance Research and Trading Lab’s vision and operations. He teaches in the Rotman Master of Finance and MBA programs, along with several other programs at the University.

As a Rotman Morning & Evening MBA or Master of Finance student, you’ll have classes in the lab that let you take full advantage of this high-tech facility that puts the global financial community at your fingertips.

Tom McCurdy, Bonham Chair in International Finance, Finance Lab Founder and Director, and Professor of Finance

Tom McCurdy, Bonham Chair in International Finance, Finance Lab Founder and Director, and Professor of Finance

Thanks for taking the time to talk with us! Can you tell us a little about the Finance Lab and your vision for founding it?

The Finance Lab is managed by myself, the lab manager, Marco Salerno, and Eric Kang. We’re also supported by a stellar team of lab assistants.

We were established more than 17 years ago with an aim of teaching finance while taking account of uncertainty in an explicit way. In the classroom, we sometimes discuss cases as if we have perfect foresight; but I want to also consider practicing a probabilistic viewpoint. What can and cannot be forecasted, and how do we make good decisions when facing uncertainty? Many successful strategies depend on good forecasts or at least an understanding of what can or cannot be predicted and with what degree of confidence.

One could teach probability theory and do forecasting in a very statistical way. But even if some students don’t have that background, I have found that they learn to think probabilistically by practicing making decisions across the range of possible outcomes. We use this simulation-based learning so that our students learn to make good decisions in complex situations for which there is considerable uncertainty.

Would you say the Finance Lab and its associated products like the Rotman Interactive Trader and Rotman Portfolio Manager are developed with practicality at its core?

Absolutely! When we are developing our simulation cases we talk to industry experts about their required skills, the nature of the decisions they have to make, and the risks and uncertainties associated with those decisions. As a result, our cases are designed to help students to prepare for their careers.

Rotman BMO Financial Group Finance Research and Trading Lab

In fact, one of the world’s largest companies is using our market simulation platform and its associated learning-by-doing cases to train their own employees worldwide. They are in the commodities field, so we developed a sequence of highly-relevant, true-to-life cases that start from understanding how commodity and derivatives markets work; and then proceed to cases that are specifically designed to train participants for their required tasks and practice the decisions they have to make. For example, for crude oil, managing costs such as storage (cost-of-carry), production (refinery) decisions, transportation (pipeline or shipping) costs and associated strategies such as transportation arbitrage, news trading, and risk management (e.g. extreme weather, pipeline breaks, market price risk, etc.). Our cases really reflect the experiences of actual companies so naturally they have important benefits for teaching.

We have developed a large number of cases to practice decision-making under uncertainty across a wide range of business problems. Whenever we are developing new cases – such as specific cases on market microstructure with multiple exchanges and new trading technologies – one of things that I have to do is keep up on innovations in markets, new securities for enhanced risk management strategies, etc., so that our cases reflect best practice in industry but also add value for learning about new approaches. Of course we benefit from the knowledge of our MBA and MFin students, many of whom are working or have experience working in companies facing those problems.

How else do people use the Finance Lab?

Some students come to the Lab to research companies because they have an interview coming up and they want to know everything about the company. Most students use our Lab to collect up-to-date information and analyses for doing their course assignments. There is a wide range of activities happened in the Lab.

Beyond being an information portal, at the Finance Lab students can use our custom applications to integrate theory and research with practice. They can link their classroom lessons and discussions to real-time market information to get immediate feedback on their understanding and mastery of the relevant questions. That evolution to a dynamic learning center is really why our Lab has been successful.


Try out the Finance Lab in one of our fun and exciting market simulation events.

Register here.

Get Practical at Rotman’s Finance Lab

Fancy yourself as a trader? Or are you a market enthusiast? Want to learn to be one?

When you choose Rotman, whether as an MBA or a Master of Finance student, not only do you learn management theory from some of the world’s foremost experts, you also get your hands right into mastering real-life simulations.

Specifically, our school has developed the BMO Financial Group Finance Research and Trading Lab. It’s a high-tech, state-of-the-art facility that enables you to interact with the global financial community and its resources. The Finance Lab grants you real-time access to global financial resources and rival research databases like Bloomberg and Thomson-Reuters, to allow you to link classroom lessons to actual securities and markets.

Rotman BMO Financial Group Finance Research and Trading Lab

Our custom-designed suite of instructional products (Rotman Interactive Trader and Rotman Portfolio Manager) use interactive simulations to help you develop your skills for making good financial decisions when faced with uncertainty about future outcomes.

For working professional students in our Morning & Evening MBA and MFin programs, the impact is immediate – you’ll be able influence your workplace by practicing what you’ve learned right away.

On February 24th, 2015, get your chance to participate in an exciting trading simulation that will give you a taste of what the Finance Lab, and Rotman School has to offer. Register for free here.

Rotman sample class. Market Simulation in the Rotman Finance Lab. February 24, 2015, 6:30 PM.

Rotman sample class. Market Simulation in the Rotman BMO Financial Group Finance Research and Trading Lab. February 24, 2015, 6:30 PM.