Tag Archives: Tips & Advice

Career Services for the ME MBA and Master of Finance

At the Rotman School of Management we want to accelerate the careers of our students. As one of the largest MBA career teams in business education we want to maximize your learning experience. The list of services available to students is extensive and varies by program, but includes one-on-one coaching, 24/7 online resources and workshops and speaker events. Our career coaching model is highly personalized. Students are paired with a career coach in their first year and remain connected throughout their time at Rotman. You will also learn how to leverage your degree within your organization.

We provide career services for working professionals.

Your Career Services team is dedicated to supporting all Morning and Evening MBA and Master of Finance students throughout your journey at Rotman and beyond. Our goal is to equip you with a lifelong toolkit you can use to take ownership of and manage your career and professional development.

Whether you are looking to advance within your company or switch to a new industry, we are here to assist you in developing your Career Management Plan to achieve your career goals. This Plan will be based on an understanding of your interests, values and strengths, coupled with knowledge and awareness of career opportunities that you will explore and target. We provide one-on-one coaching, advice on how to position yourself in the market, targeted workshops, plus a wide variety of online tools and resources to help you achieve your career goals. Professional goals are a priority, we have a full week dedicated to career preparation. This includes over 100 hours of career workshops and skill building sessions.

Our career services include individual career counselling appointments which includes a self-assessment, resume and cover letter review, networking techniques, interview preparation, behavioural mock interviews, job offer and negotiation advice, to name a few. We also provide professional development workshops about defining your career objectives, branding and positioning, crafting your network pitch, developing a job search strategy, workshops and speaker events. Finally, there are our online career resources which are job postings, career development guidelines, research tools and the alumni database.

We help you refine your career goals, market yourself efficiently and learn to network. As a member of the Rotman community, you have access to a global network of prosperous alumni. We provide carer support throughout your journey at Rotman and beyond.

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Advice from Rotman students and alumni

There are many different sources of information when it comes to getting advice and making most decisions in life, and choosing the right Master degree is no different.  In researching Rotman Master degree programs, you will most likely have viewed our website a number of times, hopefully attended an event or spoken to someone involved with the program – whether someone on the recruitment team, or a member of faculty.

One great source of information are current students and graduates – they would have had similar questions to you before starting and now have the answers to those questions (and perhaps ones you have not thought of before).

We asked the question ‘what advice would you give to someone considering choosing a Rotman program’ to students/graduates from the Executive MBA, Master of Finance, Global Executive MBA and the Morning and Evening MBA programs. We’ve highlighted a few of their comments below.

Rotman Executive MBA

“What advice would you give to someone considering choosing a Rotman program?”

“The relationships with your classmates are as important as the academics. Prepare to work hard, and have fun.” Eghtedar Manouchehri, EMBA ‘15

“My experience at Rotman exceeded my expectations. The program is a well-rounded academic experience and Rotman offers amazing opportunities to connect and network with industry leaders, both past, present and future.” Ashley Warburton, MFin ’17

“My advice: engage early and often with career services. They were instrumental in helping me choose my next career, prepare for it, and land the job I wanted.” Cole Lepine, Morning MBA ‘17

“Take advantage of extracurricular activities including clubs, lectures, workshops and case competitions. Rotman offers fantastic learning and networking opportunities outside of your coursework in the MBA.” Vanessa Perry, Morning MBA’18

“The support within the class is incredible. Inspiring professional women and role models help you thrive as colleagues and friends.” Gavinder Bhatia, EMBA ‘15

“I was impressed with the emphasis that Rotman places on leadership excellence – both organizational and personal. There is no substitution for great leadership in the corporate world.” Rachel Huckle, GEMBA ‘17

“I have acquired new friendships with like-minded people in all corners of the financial market. For anyone who wants to further their career in the financial markets while working full-time, this program is undoubtedly at the top of my recommendation list.” Richard Wong, MFin ’12

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 2018 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 strengths 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.”

Rotman Executive MBAFlexible 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 for 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.

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.

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.

 

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.

 

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.

 

 

 

 

 

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.

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.

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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!”

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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.

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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!

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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.

 

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

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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.

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.

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.

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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. 

 

Tips to Ace Your Master of Finance Application Written Essays

As you prepare the written portions of your Rotman Master of Finance application, your undergrad days when you last wrote essays may seem like a distant memory. Have no fear! We’ve talked to some of our current MFin students who came up with great advice on how to complete the written essays for your Master of FInance application.

In your application, you have to demonstrate that you have a record of academic excellence and relevant work experience. You also have to demonstrate your communication skills and suitability for the program through application items such as the written essays.  Here are some tips to help get past your writer’s block:

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Focus on content. While style and grammar are important indicators of your ability to communicate effectively, on your written essays you should definitely focus on content—what you want to communicate to the admissions committee.

John McGlynn (MFin 2017) mentions, “The essays are your pitch to an admissions representative, therefore content is the most important part of the essays.” He adds that you should make sure to:

  1. Match up the Master of Finance degree to your long term goals. Think of how the MFin program can uniquely contribute to your professional and personal growth in comparison to other programs.
  2. Demonstrate how you’ll be a great asset to the class. Consider, for example, how your academic background, work experience, and network can add value to the program and your classmates.
  3. Emphasize why you want to attend Rotman. There are many finance programs in various schools in Toronto and around the world, so let the admissions committee know why you Rotman is the best fit for you.

Write from your own perspective: the essay is not generic, it is about you! This is your chance to get personal. Both Amy Wang (Mfin 2017) and Johnny Wu (MFin 2017) point out that being genuine is key to the success of your written essays. The admissions committee wants to know what you can bring to Rotman and the MFin program, and this is your chance to tell us. Mention what you have learned at work and how your job aligns with the goals of the program. Don’t forget to include details about your professional network; remember that as students of the MFin program you will learn from each other as much as from our professors.

John also emphasized this point, mentioning that the essay should be memorable. You need to shine through the hundreds of other essays that the admissions committee reads daily.

Ask for help. If you are stuck at any point or would like some guidance, Amy reminds us that you can always reach out to our Recruitment and Admissions team. Our team is always willing to help you at any point during your application! We are here to help you succeed.

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Don’t forget to edit! Writing the essay is only half the work. Editing is just as important. A good tip from Johnny is to have others – like your family and friends – read over your essay. Having someone else read your work can often help you notice details and typos you would have otherwise missed.


Do you have any tips to share? Leave us a note below or contact us with any questions.

How to Ace the Master of Finance Video Essays

Working on your Rotman Master of Finance application? Flummoxed by the video essays? We asked our newly admitted students to share tips on how to complete and ace our Master of Finance video essays. These incoming students only recently completed their applications, so the MFin video essays are very fresh in their minds. Review their tips below and prepare to ace the Master of Finance video essays:

Screenshot from Rotman Master of Finance video essays application.

Screenshot from Rotman Master of Finance video essays application.

How you express and present yourself is just as important as what you say. As a finance leader, you’ll be expected to present strategies for success; along the same lines, the admission committee is looking to see if you have what it takes when it comes to your presence and ability to clearly articulate your ideas.

Brendon Buschman (MFin 2018) says, “Even if you feel like your response is not shaping up to be reflective of your abilities, keep focused on how you are presenting yourself non-verbally.” This thought is echoed by Jessie Hao (MFin 2018) who emphasizes that, “Even if you are at home, you should dress professionally and be ready to impress.”

Also, don’t be afraid about the content and nature of the questions. As Nicole Chang (MFin 2018) says, “the video essays questions are straightforward and personal in nature. You don’t have to worry about anything too technical or complicated. Brainstorming a handful of experiences about who you are, what you like to do, and the things that make you tick. When answering the question, be confident and get to the point directly within the given time frame.”

“Be confident and get to the point directly within the given time frame.”

Practice like you would for an interview, but don’t memorize a script. Much like a job interview, the video essays are trying to assess what you are like as a person and as a professional. This means that you can use similar job interview preparation techniques. Brendon notes that practice helped him calm his nerves during the video essays. Nonetheless, Daanish Afzal (MFin 2018) reminds us that you should definitely not memorize a script. After all, the video essays are evaluating your ability to think on your feet and communicate effectively. Instead, he suggests to focus on key points you want to highlight and how you’d like to relay this message.

Get used to a recording environment. Last but not least, all students agree that it is essential to get comfortable with a recording environment. Brendon mentions that in order to get rid of the strange feeling of being recorded, he set up his own recording environment and practiced several times through dry runs to get used to it. Jessie points out that you should definitely check for any hardware and software malfunctions. Just imagine starting the video essays and your computer running out of battery!

Following these tips will sure help you ace the MFin video essay. If you have any questions on concerns don’t hesitate to contact us or visit our website.

A Day in the Life: Rotman Morning MBA

Adam Cohen, Morning MBA '16

Adam Cohen, Morning MBA ’17

Ever wondered what it’s like to be a full-time working professional who also attends classes part-time two mornings a week as a Morning MBA student? We asked Adam Cohen, Morning MBA 2017 and Nursing Unit Administrator at Mount Sinai Hospital to walk us through a typical day.

4:00 – 7:00 am. I wake up at 4:00 am, have breakfast and head to the gym. At 6:00 am I will finish up my work-out and get ready to head to Rotman.

Morning MBA

7:00 – 9:00 am. Class starts at 7:00 am, so I arrive at 6:45 am and chat with my classmates until then. During class, professors involve students’ experiences and perspectives to explain theoretical concepts. I find this the most beneficial aspect of the program. By 9:00 am class is over and everyone heads out to start their day.

9:30 am – 12:00 pm. My work day starts at 9:30 am, when I head out to my team at Mount Sinai Hospital and see what events have transpired overnight or that morning. At 10:00 am I check my emails and continue to work on projects. This is where I see the benefits of the Morning MBA program taking place as I apply what I’ve just learned that morning to my work. Here is an example: upon review of my surgical floor, I discovered that I require an additional regular full-time employee. Due to the new government funding reform, my organization requires rational for any new hire. Using my knowledge from the course, I am able to accurately articulate the net present value of this position. Applying new learnings to my daily activities is an extremely beneficial strategy to reinforce the lesson that took place earlier in the day. It also shows senior leadership that my decisions are based on sound knowledge

Morning MBA

12:00 pm. At noon I will sit down an eat lunch with colleagues where I share about what I’m currently learning, and future social gatherings organized through my Rotman network. My colleagues are shocked to hear that class starts at 7:00 am and at how early I wake up. I chuckle and remind them that I arrive to work at 6:30 am on a day when I don’t have class. So starting at 7:00 am is actually a 30 minute sleep in!

12:45 – 5:30 pm. After lunch I go back to my units and connect with the team leader. This is often followed by leadership meetings. I believe I have developed in my role due to my time at the Rotman Morning MBA program. I am asking questions and thinking in a way I typically would not have prior to the program. I am speaking with more confidence at work, which resulted in my manager asking me to take on projects that are beyond my current scope of practice, and that have wider organizational impacts.

5:30 pm. I finish up for the day and start my walk home, checking my messages and group chats with my friends and teammates from Rotman.

6:30 – 9:30 pm. It is dinner time and I watch a mindless show to relax. Once dinner is over I catch up on phone calls and personal emails. Reading the Rotman’s GBC weekly article is very helpful for me to gauge the different events that are occurring at school. Finally, I’ll review my notes and put a plan in place to complete my homework over the weekend or work on my group responsibilities to ensure they are complete prior to meeting up.  Given that I wake up at 4:00 am, I like to go to bed early; so at 9:30 pm I turn on my alarm and hit the sack in order to wake up and start my day bright and early!


Are you a morning person? Tell us what are your strategies to get your day moving and how these help you be more productive!

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.

The one skill that will boost your career in 2016

Whether your 2016 professional goal is to land a promotion in your company or get a new job, there is one skill that can help you: Networking.

The One Skill that will boost your career in 2016

Networking might seem overwhelming, but it’s nothing more than connecting with people with whom you have something in common, in this case, an industry or a career. It is also a critical skill in today’s job market. Research suggests that 80%[1] of jobs are obtained through networking. This makes sense when considering that, on average, companies receive 250 applications per job posting.[2] Hiring someone you know is simply a more efficient way of recruiting, making networking the key to a job seeker’s success.

From attending industry events to meeting someone for a coffee chat, there are various ways to network. But how do you get better at it?

Here are three steps to tone your networking muscle:

Engage. Attending an industry event or connecting with a former colleague? Be engaging to be memorable. Use LinkedIn; prepare questions and answers—remember that this should be a two-way conversation. It is certainly important to have an elevator pitch ready, but you can’t forget to listen. Listening can help you find out how you can be useful to others and create a stronger connection.

Reciprocate. Sometimes helping others is the best way to create connections that will turn into job success in the future. You may connect a friend or former colleague with someone you know; in turn, they may also be introduced to new people through this connection that you previously didn’t know, potentially extending the reach of the overall network for your colleague and yourself.

Appreciate. Whatever you do, don’t forget to say thank you. This is especially true after attending informational interviews or coffee chats. People have taken time to meet with you, so you should demonstrate that you value their time and what they’ve shared with you. It is always a good idea to send a thank you email or, even better, a thank you card.

As a working professional studying at the Rotman School of Management you can count on tailored Career Services and resources that can help you improve your networking skills. Be sure to connect with us or attend one of our events to learn more.

For these and other tips check our blog regularly this year.

Best of luck in 2016!

[1] Click here to read the article.

[2] Click here to read the article.

Happy Holidays from the Rotman Admissions Team!

Happy Holidays from the Rotman Admissions Team!

Happy Holidays from the Rotman Admissions Team!

We wish you a very happy holiday! This past year has been an exciting one as we welcomed into our midst Rotman’s newest degree program: the Master of Financial Risk Management (MFRM). Check out their blog too for tips and the latest program updates.

As we’re winding down for the holidays, we’re also gearing up to meet you in the new year. Please visit our Rotman Morning & Evening MBA or Master of Finance admissions events pages to sign up for one of our many upcoming 2016 events.

Our offices will be closed for the holidays from Dec 23, 2015 to January 1, 2016. In the meantime, check out our websites for more information.

Have a wonderful holiday and we wish you a prosperous new year!

Top 3 Application Tips For Working Professional Master’s Programs

Given the unique criteria that differentiates Rotman’s part-time programs from full-time programs, applicants often wonder about the factors that are most important in their application. While we take a holistic approach to the admissions process and consider all aspects to be important, this is still a good question. There are certainly ways to ensure that you have a competitive advantage, and here we offer our latest top 3 application tips.

Rotman Morning MBA Team Attollo, Hult Prize 2015 finalists, use their areas of professional and academic expertise to develop a system to delivery early childhood education for marginalized children. Image from @AttolloSE.

Rotman Morning MBA Team Attollo, Hult Prize 2015 finalists, use their areas of professional and academic expertise to develop a system to delivery early childhood education for marginalized children. Here with UT – Mississauga Principal, Prof. Deep Saini. Image from @AttolloSE.

  1. Exhibit your soft skills. Although a graduate program in business requires students to have strong technical skills, we cannot forget the importance of communication. Your ability to succeed in your career will also depend on such soft skills. Therefore, when reviewing your application, we will be assessing your ability to communicate effectively. You’ll first get a chance to showcase your writing skills in three essays. Remember that aside from grammar and spelling, we will be looking for a clear writing style that can tell us why you think an MBA or Master of Finance (MFin) is right for you.  If you are called to the interview stage, this will be another chance to show us your ability to communicate your story persuasively.
  2. Demonstrate the value of your work experience. As programs for working professionals, the Morning & Evening MBA and MFin require applicants to refer back to their work experience. On average, our students have worked for 6 years. For your application, it is important to emphasize the relevance of this work experience to your studies and future career goals. So, when preparing your CV and statement, remember to refer to your achievements and progression during these years. Your resume should focus on results rather than job tasks.
  3. Have great professional references. When asking for references, don’t focus on titles. Instead, a good professional reference is one that can speak of your track record and your potential for professional growth. Your two professional references will be assessing your ability to think, to work in a team, and your ability to work with integrity to positively impact your organization. Therefore, before including them in your application, make sure you are asking individuals who can effectively strengthen your application and that they can refer back to specific examples of your achievements.

Overall, remember that these programs are significant investments, so you want to make sure the program you choose is a good fit for you. While you prepare your application be sure to research the program, attend one of our Morning & Evening MBA or Master of Finance info sessions , or sign up for a coffee chat. Last, but not least, remember to start your application early! Bonus tip: the earlier you apply, the greater your chance of receiving an entrance award.

Launching the New Part-Time Master of Finance Application Cycle for Fall 2016!

Welcome to the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto.

Welcome to the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto.

The beginning of September marks the start of the school year with our new Master of Finance students arriving on campus! We are thrilled to have them with us, especially after many months of reviewing great applications and conducting admissions interviews. In addition to welcoming our new students, September also marks the launch of our new admission cycle to recruit the best students for our part-time MFin program starting in September 2016.

We have 4 deadlines throughout the recruiting year to allow you to work towards a timeline that works best for your schedule, however, we do suggest that you apply as early as possible as this gives you the best shot of admission and entrance awards.

The Rotman MFin program grants Entrance Awards that range from $5,000 – $20,000 to a select group of students from the incoming class who demonstrate exceptional merit. Again this year, we will have four Women in Business Excellence Awards valued at $20,000 each.

Master of Finance Application Deadlines for 2015-16
December 1, 2015
February 1, 2016
April 3, 2016
June 15, 2016

International Applicant Deadline
January 20, 2016

What’s New This Year
New this year, we will be requiring applicants to record their answers to two video questions. The video interview component is designed to give all candidates guaranteed “face time” with the Admissions Committee. What we want to achieve with this video interview is to make your application come to life, and to find out more about you which will help us to evaluate whether this is the right program for you.

Prior to submitting your application, be sure to come out to some of our admission events as we hold a great variety of information sessions, coffee chats, panel discussions and sample classes throughout the year. These events will give you the opportunity to explore what Rotman has to offer and to figure out whether our MFin is the right program for you. To view our upcoming events and to register, visit Master of Finance Events

Rotman Open House, October 17, 2015. Join us at this free event.

Rotman Open House, October 17, 2015. Join us at this free event.

You might also want to consider coming to our annual Rotman Open House on October 17th. It’s an excellent way to get a feel for all things Rotman and to meet faculty, alumni and students as well as the entire Working Professionals’ team!

As always, feel free to connect with us. You may fill out this Contact Us form with your details and questions, or, contact me, Breanna Brooks, Assistant Director of Admissions & Recruitment for the Master of Finance program. We look forward to hearing from you!

Why the Rotman Master of Finance program?

Roger Brown, MFin '16

Roger Brown, MFin ’16, Relationship Manager, Commercial Real Estate Banking, Scotiabank

Hear it straight from the source. In the midst of his busy work, life and class schedule, one of our Rotman Master of Finance current students, Roger Brown, MFin ’16, had a chance to reflect on his experiences in the program so far. This is what he has to say:

“I chose the Rotman MFin program because of the world-class recognition of the Rotman brand, the part-time curriculum structure and the impressive deep and diverse financial expertise of its students and alumnus.

“The part-time structure was a key deciding factor for me. I wanted a program that was of top-notch quality and also accommodated my work schedule. The proximity of the campus to my workplace coupled with Rotman’s industry connections to Bay Street made my decision seamless.

“Being enrolled in the program gave my supervisor and senior management the confidence to assign more challenging projects to me. Six months ago, I was assigned to manage a larger loan portfolio with approximately $500 million in assets. This has given me the opportunity to operate at a higher level while working with more sophisticated clients. Also, I continue to strategically expand my professional network through my engagements in industry events organized by Rotman.

“The most valuable part of the program thus far would be my application of in-class experience at work. There were several occasions where I was able to lead my team at work on specific projects due to the expertise I bring from the MFin program. Another highlight so far was being part of the Rotman MFin winning team for this year’s Master of Finance CFA Ethics Competition. There is so much that the program can offer both in and out of the classroom.”


Get more insights directly from current students, including Roger, who will be one our of student panelists, at our upcoming Rotman Master of Finance Information Session on May 5. Or, contact Breanna Brooks, Assistant Director, Rotman Master of Finance Admissions to chat one-on-one about the program. We would be happy to hear from you.

5 Tips for Completing Your Rotman Morning or Evening MBA Application

Eva Hughes, Director, Recruitment & Admissions, Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance

Eva Hughes, Director, Recruitment & Admissions, Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance

Our spring 2015 Morning & Evening MBA application deadline is quickly approaching on April 12, 2015. To help you prepare, we have some tips for you to help complete your application:

  1. Unofficial Transcripts are acceptable for a conditional offer of admission. Official copies can be sent after.
  2. Highlight how you meet and possibly exceed the work experience requirement for the program. A minimum of 2 years work experience is required.
  3. GMAT scores can be submitted after your online application. We will keep in touch and guide you until all documents are received.
  4. Essays should be clear and concise, linking your experience to aspects of the MBA program. Highlight what you will bring to the class, not only what you want to gain.
  5. Professional references are best when obtained from managers who have supervised you and can speak highly of your work.

If you have any questions, feel free to connect with Rummy Gill, our Assistant Director of Recruitment & Admissions of the Morning & Evening MBA programs. Or, join our upcoming webinars and information sessions.

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.

Impact and Intiative at Rotman

This post is an excerpt of an original post from the Rotman Admissions Blog (Full-Time MBA).

On Monday February 2nd  the Women in Management Association (WIMA) student club at Rotman launched the annual WIMA Top 10 gathered to celebrate the achievements of Rotman alumnae.

In the following categories we recognized 10 women who have made outstanding contributions in their field:

  • Business Industry
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Professional Services
  • Public Services
  • Social Impact
WIMA Top 10 Award Winners with Dean Tiff Macklem

WIMA Top 10 Award Winners with Dean Tiff Macklem

How did this all come about? Fourteen years ago, two women saw a gap in women in leadership at the school and decided to do something about it and founded WIMA. Fast forward to today, the WIMA executive saw a gap in recognizing and celebrating the many achievements of our female alumni and WIMA Top10 was born.

This type of leadership is natural for Rotman students; see a ‘problem’, take initiative, and solve it. When we review future applicants to the program we look for the same things. Where in your life have you seen a gap, an issue, or a problem and done something about it? A work example, an extracurricular example, even a personal one all count. The theory goes, if you’re wired this way to have an impact in one area in your life, the likelihood is that you will do it again and again.

Impact is an emerging theme at Rotman. Our Dean Tiff Macklem recently wrote that his vision for the next 5 years is focusing on this very thing. We’ve spent the last number of years with a phenomenal growth story, now we’re turning that into a growth and impact story. Our impact story is the impact of Rotman graduates around the world measured by their success in leading companies, starting companies, the value and jobs they create, the businesses they reinvent and the leadership they provide in society. Additionally, we mean the impact of Rotman thinking and scholarship at management and board tables around the world.

Start thinking about your impact story. Your resume, references, essays are all great ways to signal ways you’ve taken initiative and had an impact.


Our Winter Morning & Evening MBA application deadline closes on February 15, 2015 and we would love to see in your application your impact thus far in your life.

The earlier you apply, the greater your chance of an entrance award. For more tips on submitting a powerful application, review our post on “Inside Scoop on the Professional MBA Application“.

5 New Year’s resolutions you should make (and keep) in 2015

Eva Hughes, Director, Recruitment & Admissions, Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance

Eva Hughes, Director, Recruitment & Admissions, Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance

Happy New Year to all future Rotman MBA and MFin students – we hope 2015 will be a healthy and successful year for all of you. Whatever your personal and professional goals are, January is a great time for self-reflection, new beginnings and yes, you guessed it right, those new year’s resolutions!

Here are 5 resolutions for you to consider in 2015:

1)      Set exciting professional goals with milestones throughout the year

Whether you feel the need to make a big change or you are simply striving to stretch yourself as a professional, use the start of the New Year to set yourself some concrete goals. Be it a specific career move, promotion, professional designation or else, be sure your goals are exciting and something you feel passionate about. Building in specific milestones is a good way to keep yourself on track to make sure you stick to your goals.

2)      Venture out of your office & make new connections

Make this year a social one! Build new connections on an ongoing basis and not only when you need a network to help you. Set up coffee chats and lunch meetings at the start of the week before you get too involved in your work commitments. Before you know it, you will have built a fabulous professional network that will be there to support you and help you achieve your career goals.

Rotman Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance

3)      Learn something new every day

Challenge yourself out of your comfort zone to keep learning. At the Rotman School, we pride ourselves on thought leadership and continuous self-development. Our students are exposed to new ideas and ways of doing things on a daily basis through our innovative curriculum, exceptional faculty & peers and vibrant industry events. Keep an eye on the Rotman Speaker Series  and our exciting Admissions sample classes on the Rotman Self-Development Lab & Rotman BMO Financial Group Finance Research & Trading Lab .

4)      Get involved

Be it a professional association, Board of Directors or a Charity event – there is so much out there to participate in. These activities can be incredibly meaningful for you as a person and also as a professional by helping you build new skill sets, expand your network and resume while having fun.

5)      Explore Rotman and our array of programs for working professionals

You may have been thinking of pursuing graduate studies for a while or perhaps you just started considering further studies. In any case, doing your research on what program fits your needs and personal circumstances is paramount. Explore our wide array of programs at the Rotman School and join in the info sessions, coffee chats, sample classes and GMAT prep courses to learn about what is awaiting you as a working professional at our vibrant School.

We look forward to hearing from you and being part of your plans for 2015!

 

Rotman Deadlines and Entrance Awards: What You Need to Know

Eva Hughes

Eva Hughes, Director, Recruitment & Admissions, Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance

As we approach our first deadlines for our three part-time working professional programs (Morning MBA, Evening MBA and Master of Finance) at Rotman, here are a few handy tips you’ll need to know:

  1. Morning & Evening MBA application deadline: November 30
  2. Master of Finance application deadline: December 1
  3. An MBA or an MFin? How do you choose? It comes down to your experience and your goals. The MBA will equip you with all round business knowledge, while the MFin allows finance professionals to focus solely on the different areas of applied finance.
  4. New entrance awards! We recognize your commitment and dedication as a working professional and announced these entrance awards in addition to those already existing. Entrance awards range from $5,000 to $30,000 each.
    • Tip: the earlier you apply, the greater your chances of securing our new and existing entrance awards.
  5. Get the inside scoop on what the Admissions Committee actually look for in your working professional MBA (and MFin) application. Check out these tips from our Managing Director.
  6. Want to get a feel for the Rotman experience for yourself? Meet David Goldreich, Associate Professor of Finance at our upcoming sample class on Market Efficiency, November 20. It’s appropriate whether you’re interested in the Morning or Evening MBA or the Master of Finance.
  7. Ready to apply? Review our Morning & Evening MBA admissions criteria or our Master of Finance admission requirements.
  8. Start your profile and application today!

As always, if you have questions about our part-time working professional degree programs, contact us!

Inside Scoop on the Professional MBA Application

Elizabeth Duffy MacLean, Managing Director, MBA and MFin, Masters Part-Time Programs, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto

Elizabeth Duffy MacLean, Former Managing Director, MBA and MFin, Masters Part-Time Programs

We often get asked, “What are the most important factors in assessing an application for a part-time MBA program? What matters most?” While, at Rotman, we really do look at each one on a case-by-case basis and assess the 7 criteria, together holistically, there are still fundamentals that can help you get a competitive edge in the application process.

  1. Your work experience is key.  Work experience is often what separates a full-time MBA applicant from an applicant for a part-time program.  Our Morning & Evening MBA applicants have an average of 6 years of experience, and want to keep working while they complete an MBA.  What we want to see in those years of experience is 1) progression, 2) a CV that focuses on results, and 3) references that support a track record (more on references in a minute).  The Admissions Committee will be looking at your work experience in the context of what it will bring to the classroom and the value of the program to you.
  2. Good communication skills are essential. You have an opportunity to showcase your communication skills in several ways.  Book a pre-qualifying meeting with our recruiting staff, so that we can get an initial sense of your ability to articulate, to listen and to clearly and concisely form your views.  A good conversation will be remembered when your file hits the recruiter’s desk.  Second, there are 3 essays that offer the opportunity to express yourself in writing.  Grammar, spelling and clear writing style is what we look for, along with a solid understanding of why an MBA makes sense for you and a level of self-awareness.  Finally, if you get to the interview stage, think about what questions you expect will be asked and how you will tell your story clearly and concisely.
  3. References matter. Your two references should be professional ones.  At least one should be a current or former boss. The references need to be able to speak to numerous attributes, many of which are work-place related.  They will be assessing your analytical skills, teamwork skills, personal integrity and the impact you’ve had within the organization, among others.  Take the time to ensure you ask your references in advance if they will be willing to be one, and tell them that specific examples are particularly valuable.

In all cases, be genuine. It will make a real difference to how you come across. And, finally, do your research before you attend a session or a pre-qualifying meeting.  An MBA is a significant investment and you want the right program in the right school.  Plus, your research will reflect a level of seriousness and maturity that is always looked upon positively.  The fundamentals discussed here also apply to other professional part-time programs like the Rotman Master of Finance.

There’s never a better time than the present to start the process!

Part-Time Master of Finance Studies, Full Work-Life Balance

Stephanie Chow, MFin '16, CPA, CA

Stephanie Chow, MFin ’16, CPA, CA

Stephanie Chow is a working professional in this year’s new Rotman Master of Finance class. Entering the MFin program, she received an entrance award* based on her exceptional merit. She is also an Investor Relations Financial Analyst with Tricon Capital Group Inc. With the admissions process still fresh on her mind, we asked her about her decision to choose our part-time program.

How did you get started in finance?

I’ve always loved corporate finance (I was a TA for the Introduction to Corporate Finance course in my undergrad) and I actually started my professional working life as an auditor at Ernst and Young. I was part of the Asset Management group where I specialized in Funds and Broker Dealers. I learned a lot about the private equity space during my three years at the firm. Eventually, I found my way to Tricon Capital Group and was part of their back office for about a year. The company has been very supportive of my career growth and management saw the potential in me to be part of the face of Tricon. I’m currently the Investor Relations contact for the company and I work closely with the CFO on all corporate finance transactions.

What is the lifestyle for you as a woman in finance?

Busy! I’m lucky in the sense that I’m not at the stage in life where I have other bigger responsibilities (such as children) so I have the luxury of flexibility. On the other hand, that flexibility made me feel as though I had no excuse to take a break. I used to work all the time and eventually I realized that jamming through the hours was not a healthy lifestyle. However, in a highly competitive industry such as finance, no one will ever stop you from working hard! I had to learn to make time for other things in life. So now, I’m still busy, but time is used more productively and I get to see my loved ones, spend some time on my hobbies, work towards a degree, and of course, sleep.

When you researched the program what events did you attend, what did you find useful in your search?

When I was researching about B-schools, I attended two conferences which were extremely helpful:

1) Forté Foundation MBA conference: I met Elizabeth Duffy-MacLean, Rotman MFin Managing Director, at this event. She was very helpful and I learned a lot about the MFin program and Rotman’s great support system for women in finance through her.

2) QS World MBA Tour: Remember to register for this event ahead of time if you plan on doing one on one interviews with representatives of different schools. I found the interviews to be very valuable as they gave me insight into the programs from around the world. I had several schools on my list and I reached out to each of their recruiting offices ahead of time. Some of them were able to arrange for an alumni to meet with me and I received great advice from these meetings.

In addition, I attended the Rotman Open House** for the MFin program. I met other professionals who were interested in the program and I was able to get a sense of the caliber of people who may become my future classmates. Needless to say, I was very impressed! Remember to get the contact info of the members in the recruiting team!

Finally, recent alumni of the program would be your best source of information. They can educate you on topics that you cannot find in a pamphlet, such as what the students are like, information on the curriculum and workload, overall culture of the school, etc.

What was it that attracted you to a part-time MFin program versus a full-time option?

The part-time option was more attractive to me because I believe experience and academics are both equally important. The part-time option allows me to build experience while I work towards a degree. Additionally, I want to be part of a strong network of professionals who live and breathe finance and learn from their experiences in the working world.

Best piece of advice for a woman working in finance?

Speak up!

We all want to be super woman; I pride myself in being able to multi task and juggle ten things at a time. However, we are not super heroes. Learn to speak up and ask for help! There is no shame in reaching out to your loved ones for a bit of support. When you are well- rested and less stressed, it makes them happier as well!

This is extremely important in any industry. As women, we’re naturally great listeners. What most of us need to work on is to speak up and share your opinion with others. Unfortunately, in the finance industry, we’re usually outnumbered by men. This definitely makes it harder for us because the environment is sometimes intimidating. That doesn’t mean you should question yourself and sit in silence! Your opinion is just as valuable as that man next to you. As for the men, help us out! Next time, ask the lady next to you what her opinion is and offer her the chance to speak up.

I highly recommend the book “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead” by Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook.

* New Master of Finance Women’s Excellence Awards recently announced! Details here.
** The annual Rotman Open House is happening this year on October 18, 2014 from 10 AM – 3 PM. Register now.

Announcing new entrance awards for working professionals!

Eva Hughes

Eva Hughes, Director, Recruitment & Admissions, Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance

We’re pleased to announce new entrance awards for our three working professional, part-time degree programs. These entrance awards will be awarded to candidates starting the 2015 academic year. They are granted based on merit to recognize outstanding candidates of our Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance programs.

Morning & Evening MBA

  • New! Two Morning MBA Excellence Awards of $25,000 each*
  • New! Five Women in Business Excellence Awards of $15,000 each

Master of Finance

  • New! Four Master of Finance Women’s Excellence Awards of $20,000 each

The Women in Business and Master of Finance Women’s Excellence Awards are specifically awarded to female candidates in support of their career aspirations. The Morning MBA Excellence Awards are considered for candidates who apply to rise with sun in the Morning MBA program.

These new entrance awards are in addition to existing entrance awards. As with all of our entrance awards for working professionals, no additional application is required as you will be considered automatically based on the quality of your experiences, and your Morning MBA, Evening MBA or Master of Finance application. Tip: the earlier you apply, the greater your changes of securing our new and existing entrance awards!

Visit the Morning & Evening MBA or Master of Finance websites to learn more about the programs or about entrance awards. You may also contact us directly. We would love to hear from you!

* Apply to the Morning MBA by February 2015 to be automatically considered.

Showing Communication Skills: The Proof is in the Details

Marnie Consky

Marnie Consky, Lead, Career Services for Working Professionals

Originally posted in Vault.

Marnie Consky is Lead, Career Services for Working Professionals, Morning & Evening MBA and Master of Finance Programs.

All MBA-level jobs require you to have strong communication skills. Aside from singing your praises in your resume and cover letter, it’s even more important to demonstrate those communication skills in instances where recruiters and hiring managers are paying attention. Outside of the obvious networking sessions and interviews, here are some situations where small details count:

  • Voice mail: ensure that your voice mail message sounds professional. Imagine the recruiter is calling to tell you that you’ve been selected for an interview – your voice mail shouldn’t do anything to potentially have them question their decision. Record your outgoing message without background noise or distractions, and script it first. If you are in the process of setting up informational meetings and applying for jobs, remember to be at your “professional best” whenever answering the phone. Answer the phone “Hi, (your first name) speaking” or “Hi, this is (first name)”
  • Out of office email message: set up an out of office message if you’re going to be away on vacation or unreachable for a period of time. Thank the sender for their message and indicate when they can expect to hear back from you. No need to state your first day away, just when you’ll be back.
  • Email signature: Your email signature should include your first and last name, the year your degree will be conferred (e.g. MBA Candidate 2014), name of your school, phone number and email address. Also consider including your LinkedIn URL and ensure that your profile is consistent with your resume and cover letter.
  • Thank you note: whether you’re sending a handwritten note to thank someone for an informational meeting, emailing company representatives that you met at an information session or emailing your interviewer(s), be mindful of what you say and how you say it. Keep it short; reiterate your appreciation of their time and your interest in the company/role as appropriate.

It goes without saying that how you communicate on social media platforms (LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook) is also of equal importance. Be aware that what you post online is public and searchable, even in cases where you’ve gone some lengths to protect your privacy. Be mindful of what you’re posting and of who might be reading it.

Bottom line: your motto for communication should be “show them – don’t just tell them.”