University of Waterloo, School of Accounting and Finance Demonstrate Financial Savviness at CFA Institute Research Challenge Local Competition

TORONTO – 19 February 2021 – Congratulations to the students from the University of Waterloo, School of Accounting and Finance for their compelling research which earned them the winning title for the local level of the CFA Institute Research Challenge Award. The student team members, Brendan Mick, Anna Shen and Noah Yabrov, each will receive a thousand dollar prize and will be advancing to the sub-regional competition of the CFA Institute Research Challenge. Winners of each sub-regional level will advance to the regional semi-finals on 15 - 16 April 2021. 

“Over the last five months, our team has put countless hours into researching Empire Company. Despite being entirely online, our team has never felt closer. Like all teams, we faced adversity along the way, but these only made us stronger. The day of the competition was extremely nerve-racking. After weeks of preparation, our hard work paid off as we presented to a panel of experienced industry professionals. We owe a large portion of our success to the unwavering support we have received from our Faculty Advisors and alumni network. We could not have done it without them, especially Steve Balaban and Jeannine LiChong. Sub-regional, here we come!" said Brendan Mick, University of Waterloo team member.

MicrosoftTeams-image (2)

“Brendan, Anna and Noah showed a strong commitment to the competition by working countless hours to create a detailed research report and a well-articulated presentation. In the final round of presentations, it was clear from the question-and-answer period that the students were extremely prepared to back up their recommendation with extensive analysis that included primary research. I was especially impressed by the team culture and the way that the students worked together to support each other. As well, we would not have been able to achieve this success without the incredible support of our Industry Mentor, Jeannine LiChong.” said Steven Balaban, CFA, Faculty Advisor.

The CFA Institute Research Challenge is an annual global competition that provides university students with hands-on mentoring and intensive training in financial analysis. Students work in teams to research and analyze a publicly traded company, and each team writes a research report on its assigned company with a buy, sell, or hold recommendation.

“The CFA Institute has created an exciting opportunity for students to gain a better understanding of capital markets, preparing them for future careers. We were pleased to be chosen as the research company, share our story with these students and see their perspectives on Empire Company. We would like to congratulate all students for their tremendous efforts, with a particular commendation for the winning team.” said Michael Vels, CFO, Empire Company Limited.

Student teams from around the world will meet at the global finals of the competition on 22 April 2021 where they will present and defend their analysis to a panel of industry professionals. Students learn from experienced industry experts and peers from the world’s top business schools.

We were given a glimpse of the future leaders of our industry. Each participant exemplified the CFA Institute’s ethos of education, excellence, and ethics through the meticulousness and quality of their research. The judges were impressed by the poise and grace of each team’s presentation. Our warmest congratulations to the University of Waterloo. We wish you success in the sub-regional round of the competition. Our sincere thanks to the staff and volunteers of CFA Society Toronto and CFA Society Ottawa, faculty advisors, industry mentors, and our subject company, Empire Company Limited, for making this year’s competition a success.” said Sunny Guo, CFA, judge and Vice Chair of CFA Society Toronto’s Awards & University Relations Committee.

For more information visit CFA Institute Research Challenge

Media contacts
Jonathan Mai
CFA Society Toronto
Marketing & Communications Manager 
Phone: (416) 366-5755 X 235
Twitter: @cfatoronto 

About CFA Society Toronto
Founded in 1936, CFA Society Toronto is part of the worldwide network of CFA Institute member societies that lead the investment profession globally by promoting the highest standards of ethics, education and professional excellence for the ultimate benefit of society. CFA Society Toronto represents the interests of over 10,000 investment professionals in the Greater Toronto Area through advocacy, education, events, and professional development.  For more information visit or follow us on Twitter @cfatoronto and on LinkedIn CFA Society Toronto.

Chartered Financial Analyst® and CFA® are registered trademarks owned by CFA Institute.



Back to top arrow